Body aches are described as nagging pains felt in different parts of the body. The severity of the ache may differ depending on the pathology or cause of the ache. All of us experience body aches at different times in our lives. Most commonly we may experience body aches following a tiring day and when you have over exerted yourself like after a picnic, trek, physical exercise in the form of running, walking, jogging etc. These aches are temporary and usually you may recover from these body aches following a good rest or sound sleep. These aches are due to over exertion of the muscles and spasm of the muscles which recover after rest.
Other causes of muscle and body aches are injuries, trauma, sprains, strains, lifting heavy weights and over use of muscles. These may cause generalised muscle aches and may recover over a period of few days. You may require mild analgesics like ibuprofen and acetaminophen, which will help reduce the local inflammation and swelling.
Another common cause of body aches is vitamin D and calcium deficiency. Vitamin D is essential for the absorption and utilisation of calcium. It aids the deposition of calcium in the bones. In children, vitamin D deficiency is known to cause Rickets and in adults it causes Osteomalacia. In both these conditions the bones become soft and prone to fractures from the slightest injury. Both the conditions are also associated with muscle and body aches.
Calcium is essential for the optimum functioning of the muscles as well as of the nerves. And hence deficiency of calcium and Vitamin D is known to cause muscle and body aches. Vitamin D is synthesized below your skin following exposure to sun rays. Vitamin D deficiency is commonly seen in people today as most of us are involved in indoor jobs and sedentary lifestyles. Lack of exposure to sun rays is a common cause of Vitamin D deficiency. If you complain of symptoms suggesting Vitamin D or calcium deficiency, you may do a blood test to confirm this. In case your calcium and Vitamin D levels are low you must visit your doctor. He will suggest calcium supplements and Vitamin D supplements. Vitamin D may be prescribed in the form of either tablets or Intramuscular injections.
Fibromyalgia is another cause of widespread body aches and pains. It is commonly seen in women between the ages 20 to 50 years. It is associated with physical and emotional trauma, fatigue, depression, sleep problems and anxiety disorders. The exact cause of this disorder is unknown. You may complain of generalised body aches on waking up in the morning which may improve during the day and recur towards the evening. You may have several tender points over your back of the neck, shoulders, hips, shins, elbows, chest and knees. You may experience severe pain when these points are either touched or pressed. Some may also complain of worsening of these pains with excess activity, exertion, emotional stress, depression and cold and damp weather.
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