Orthopaedics

Aching Legs at Night

Aching legs during night may cause great discomfort and may also result in sleepless nights for a long period. Aching legs at night may affect people of all age groups. Elderly people, adults, teenagers and children may suffer from this condition. However, this decides the severity of the leg ache. Prickling and tingling like sensations, fatigue and burning sensation are often experienced by the victims of aching legs during night. Aching legs may or may not be a health problem. Read on to know about the causes of aching legs.

Aching Legs at Night – Causes

Following are some of the causes of aching legs at night:

  • Restless Leg Syndrome

    This is a constant movement of feet or legs due to burning, tingling, tickling and annoying feeling in the leg muscles. Making jittery movements and persistent fidgeting movements with lower limbs during night are the most common symptoms of restless leg syndrome. In severe cases, it may disturb their partner. There are no specific causes for this health condition. However, studies revealed that deficiency of vitamin B12 and iron may result in restless leg syndrome. Nerve damages may be the underlying cause of this condition.

  • Muscle Cramps

    Always, muscle cramps are unexpected and extremely painful. These happen when muscles of the leg contract involuntarily and can’t relax. Skeletal muscles such as the muscles in thighs, calf and in the foot arch are the most common areas for cramps. These sudden bouts of pain which include muscle cramps may resolve in a few seconds or in a couple of hours. Drop in electrolytes or lack of oxygen causes cramping. Muscle cramps in legs cause excruciating pain.

  • Peripheral Artery Disease

    This condition develops due to atherosclerosis. Arteries become narrow due to the accumulation of fat in arteries walls. This restricts blood flow to the feet and legs and makes it more stiff and prevents dilating. Hence, while exercising, pulling or walking the leg muscles to work an extra mile, lack of oxygen and blood flow tires them. One may experience severe pain in the legs while resting because the legs are deprived of blood and oxygen, resulting in aching sensation in legs. Resting and balancing exercise helps to recover from this condition. Do not consume high cholesterol food and also quit smoking.

  • Varicose Veins

    This is a condition of veins, where veins pop out of the outer skin surface due to swelling. Usually, varicose veins develop in calves. However, this may be noticed in other body parts also. As veins become varicosed or swollen, their valves become dysfunctional. Because of this, flow of blood may be obstructed, allowing blood to flow in backward direction and this causes swelling and chronic leg pain. A person with varicose veins suffer from leg pain in day time too. Leg injury, physical exertion, prolonged standing, hereditary, menopause, pregnancy, obesity and aging are the causes of varicose veins.

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