Delayed onset muscle soreness is also known as DOMS. Delayed onset muscle soreness is caused by lengthened exercise. Many symptoms are associated with DOMS. Generally the symptoms go away after 72 hours. There are ways to treat delayed onset muscle soreness. Many times people try to stretch extensively to fix the damage however this does not work.
Some of the facts about delayed onset muscle soreness can help you prevent and treat your DOMS. Being that the cause of delayed onset muscle soreness is lengthened exercise or pushing yourself too hard too soon. One of the ways to prevent this is by gradually increasing the intensity of the workout. The way DOMS or muscle fever happens is by extensive exercise that causes microtrauma to the muscle fibers. Overstretching can also cause soreness.
There are some signs and symptoms to tell if you have delayed onset muscle soreness. Your pain will be strongest in the first 24-72 hours. You will experience muscle pain and stiffness. You will feel very sore, and it will be hard to repeat the same workout. After the first 72 hours you may have some mild dull pain. The affected muscles will remain slightly tender.
Soreness and tenderness due to delayed onset muscle soreness is called muscular mechanical hyperalgesia. You can treat many of the symptoms of muscular mechanical hyperalgesia sometimes by repeating the workout at a lower intensity. The muscles are sore because the muscles repair rapidly to prevent muscle damage. When the muscles rapidly adapt to prevent future damage it is known as the ‘repeated-bout effect’. You can help along the repeated-bout effect by performing the same unaccustomed eccentric exercise. Some fitness experts believe staying hydrated and keeping electrolyte levels up will prevent DOMS, though it is not a fact.
Additionally, you can treat DOMS with things that loosen the muscles and increase blood circulation such as massage, saunas, hot tubs, and hot baths. Sometimes treatment can include immersion in cold water. Working through the pain will improve your threshold for pain. Some people believe that working through the pain is the only way to relieve pain. Delayed onset muscle soreness is generally caused by over exerting the muscles, or performing an exercise at too high of an intensity too quickly. DOMS can be prevented by slowly increasing intensity over time during the workout.