Treatment depends on the severity of the strain and the muscle involved.
Treatment usually includes:
- Rest—Do not do activities that cause pain. If normal walking hurts, shorten your stride. Do not play sports until the pain is gone.
- Ice—Apply cold to the injured area for 15-20 minutes, four times a day for several days after the injury. Do not apply the cold directly to the skin.
- Compression and elevation—This can decrease swelling.
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications—These are often helpful in relieving pain. They can also mask symptoms. If you still have muscle tenderness while taking these drugs, do not return to physical activity. Check with your doctor.
- Heat—Use heat only when you are returning to activity. Then use it before stretching or getting ready to exercise.
- Stretching—When the acute pain is gone, start gentle stretching. Stay within pain limits. Hold each stretch about 10 seconds and repeat six times. Repeat stretching four times a day.
- Strengthening—When a muscle is injured, it becomes weaker because it is not used. You must gradually regain strength. It is best to do this under the supervision of a healthcare professional.
If you are diagnosed with a strained muscle, follow your doctor's instructions .
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2022 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.