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Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness

20 August 2020



Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) is muscle pain experienced after working out. It usually sets in after one to two days of working out. If you experience immediately after working out or while working out, it is a different kind of muscle soreness. It is called acute muscle soreness that is caused by quick lactic acid build up. This kind of pain is short-lived. Post-workout soreness tends to reach the peak after one to three days of working out.

The symptoms of DOMS are:

  • Reduced range of motion due to pain and stiffness
  • Short-term loss of muscle strength
  • Muscle fatigue
  • Muscles that feel tender to touch or swollen

Delayed onset muscle soreness is your body’s response to tearing of microscopic muscle fibers caused by high-intensity exercise. People often consider DOMS as a sign of ‘good’ workout. However, it is not necessarily true. When you start exercising or start a new routine, you experience soreness. As you continue exercising, your body and you may no longer experience soreness. This doesn’t indicate that your workout wasn’t ‘good’ enough.

How do you treat DOMS?

Time is the only treatment for DOMS, but there are various ways in which you can ease pain and stiffness. Research suggests some self-care and treatment that may help lessen the discomfort.

1. Massage

Several studies suggest that people who receive a massage of 24, 48, or 72 hours after high-intensity workout experience considerably less soreness as compared to someone who didn’t get a massage. If getting a professional massage isn’t feasible, you can self-massage your calves, thighs, arms, and shoulders. 

2. Anti-inflammatory foods

Certain foods and supplements have proven to have anti-inflammatory properties which aid in reducing muscle soreness. Some of those foods are nuts, proteins and cereals.

3. Topical analgesics

There are various topical analgesics available that relieve pain. These analgesics include heat-based and cold-based products. Depending on the nature of the pain and inflammation, you can choose the kind of treatment you’d like. Cold therapy or cryotherapy is gaining popularity in recent times due to the cooling and soothing effect that helps relieve pain. BioFrost pain relief products are based on the principles of cold therapy and are natural, effective, and diclofenac-free.

Some other treatments include taking a warm or a cold bath, and OTC medications. DOMS can be prevented by staying hydrated, warming up, and taking it slowly. DOMS shouldn’t hold you back. Your body slowly becomes used to the routine and it becomes easier.

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