Muscle Soreness Without Exercises: Causes and Dealing Ways

There are more than 600 muscles in the human body which help its normal functioning. Some of the muscles have an autonomous function, which we can’t control such as the cardiac muscle, while some of the muscles such as the skeletal muscles can be controlled. Myalgia is the medical word for sore and painful muscles which can vary in severity from mild, moderate and to severe pain.  Myalgia occurs to people every now and then for many reasons. It can affect any part of the body and it can last from a couple of days and up to a couple of months. Muscle pain due to excessive physical activity is a common problem. However, pain without exercise can be related to a certain medical condition.

Muscle Pain Without Exercise, Why?

Muscle pain and muscle soreness are usually localized, affecting only one muscle or a few muscles on a specific body part, caused mostly by stress, injuries, muscle overuse or tension. Widespread muscle soreness is also possible, usually caused by a certain illness, an infection or the use of certain medications.

1. Vitamin D Deficiency

Vitamin D deficiency is known to lead to muscle soreness due to the fact that our body is made out of cells which have vitamin D receptors. When there is a lack of vitamin D, these receptors become hypersensitive leading to a nonspecific musculoskeletal pain. A lack of vitamin D has a great impact on the bone structure as well, making them become painful and brittle. As the muscles are attached to the bones, it is normal for them to become weak and sore too.

Sun exposure on daily basis for at least 20 minutes a day is very important in order to get the necessary amount of vitamin D needed. Also, there are various vitamin D supplements available when sun exposure is not possible.

2. Iron Deficiency

Iron deficiency is another common cause of muscle pain without exercise. However, eating foods that are rich in iron such as spinach, beans, nuts, eggs, mushrooms or fish can help solve this problem and increase the iron levels in the human body.

Women are more likely to have muscle pain and soreness due to iron deficiency as they tend to lose blood from heavy menstrual periods. Whenever you are concerned about your health and you think that iron deficiency might be your problem, you can always get your iron levels checked.

3. Stress

Stress is another cause of muscle pain. Normally when being under stress, the human body releases stress hormones known to cause muscle tension. Being under chronic stress can lead to having these muscles tensioned all the time. Certain relaxation techniques can help you eliminate and reduce stress as much as possible.

4. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

A chronic fatigue syndrome is a group of symptoms including weakness and extreme fatigue, muscle pain and muscle soreness, tiredness, headaches, difficulties sleeping, severe exhaustion, difficulties concentrating, etc. The above mentioned signs and symptoms should last at least 6 months or longer.

When it comes to muscle soreness, it is usually located in multiple areas of the body and not just in only one area. Regular physical activity, a good night sleep and a healthy diet can help you deal and manage chronic fatigue syndrome.

5. Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a medical condition characterized by pain and muscle soreness throughout the body. It affects the joints and other tissues as well. Anxiety, depression, insomnia, and headaches are a common problem for people dealing with fibromyalgia as well. The most affected body parts are the neck and the back. The real cause of fibromyalgia is not known and for this reason, there is no cure for this medical condition as well. However regular physical activity, a healthy diet, and a complete lifestyle change can help you manage the muscle pain and muscle soreness.

6. Disuse Atrophy

Disuse dystrophy is another cause that can lead to muscle pain without exercise. This condition develops when the muscles get weak waste away, as the muscle tissue and muscle tone get lost due to inactivity. A sedentary lifestyle is the common cause of disuse muscle dystrophy, as well as, being conducted to bed rest due to other medical problems.

7. Other Health Conditions

An imbalance of certain minerals in the body such as calcium, magnesium, potassium can lead to muscle pain too. Dehydration is another common cause of muscle pain. Flu can also lead to muscle pain and soreness throughout the body.

When to Contact a Medical Professional?

You should seek medical help in cases when:

  • Muscle pain persists longer than 3 days.
  • The muscle pain is severe and for no reason.
  • You notice redness or swelling around the tender muscle which are signs of an infection.
  • You notice a rash or a tick bite.
  • You have poor circulation, especially in the lower extremities.
  • You have recently changed your medicine doses, after which muscle pain started.

You should seek immediate medical help in cases when:

  • You have water retention and you are urinating less than usually.
  • You have suddenly gained weight.
  • You have high fever, nausea, and vomiting, a stiff neck.
  • You have severe muscle weakness and pain which prevents you from moving any part of the body.

Muscle Pain Without Exercise, How to Deal with It?

Treatment of muscle pain and muscle soreness will depend on its underlying cause. Certain medications can help you deal with this muscle pain and soreness. However, the following tips can help you deal in cases of muscle pain:

  • Stretching – Regular stretching every morning after you wake up and every evening before you go to bed can help you deal with muscle pain and muscle soreness.
  • Water and nutrients – Drinking plenty of water a day will keep your body good hydrated, while a healthy diet will give your body all the necessary nutrients for a normal functioning.
  • OTC painkillers – They are often recommended when dealing with muscle pain and muscle soreness. They will help you relax and relieve the pain.
  • Massage – This is something everybody prefers. Getting a massage is really a relaxing and enjoying thing, helping this way relieve all the muscle tension, pain and soreness as well.
  • Regular physical activity – If you are leading a sedentary life, you should stop it immediately and change your lifestyle as soon as possible. I know that moving around when your entire body is in pain is not something that motivates you, but the more you move, in less pain you will be. Regular physical activity will keep your muscles strong and even build muscle tissue. You should increase the amount of exercise gradually until the desired results are achieved. Patients who need to be on bed rest due to other medical problems can benefit from working with a physical therapist which can teach and help them exercise as much as possible in order to avoid muscle atrophy.