Pulled muscle from coughing
Cough is a common issue during the cold and flu season and sometimes, a cough can be severe that it can cause straining of the muscles in the chest or anywhere. Pulled muscle is an injury where the fibers of the muscle are overstretched. Take note that this injury is quite common among athletes. A pulled muscle is also common when an individual experience several episodes of vigorous coughing.
Coughing is a forceful action which can cause straining and stretching of various muscles of the body. Coughing stretches the chest and abdominal muscles. Pulled muscles caused by coughing are not a serious condition and improvement can be seen in two to three days.
Symptoms of pulled muscles caused by coughing
- There is stiffness, pain and tenderness on the affected area. With every coughing episode, the person experiences sharp and shooting pain at the area.
- Muscles of the chest, back and abdomen are affected and pain becomes severe after flexion or contraction of the muscles in the area.
- There is difficulty in bending or twisting the body.
Treatment and home remedies of pulled muscles caused by coughing
- Treat the underlying cause of the cough and when it is already treated, the strained muscles can be rested, relaxed and improved. Microscopic tears can be healed.
- Prevent the affected area from moving and the best way is by controlling coughing. It is best to seek medical care so that the doctor will provide a prescription medication to manage the cough.
- Rest the damaged muscles by controlling the cough, limit any form of movement and get plenty of sleep in order to give the muscle time to heal.
- Apply an ice pack over the affected area for at least 15 minutes every two hours in order to minimize the swelling and inflammation. Place a cloth between the skin and the ice pack in order to prevent further damage to the skin.
- Alternating cold compress with hot compress is highly beneficial in minimizing the pain and tenderness. The cold compress helps in minimizing inflammation while a warm compress or taking a warm bath can promote an increase in the flow of blood around the affected area.
- Compress the chest by wrapping it using an Ace bandage. Avoid wrapping it too tight since it can cause discomfort and difficulty in breathing.
- Elevate the affected muscles above the level of the heart by propping the body with some pillow, or by lying on the side opposite the pulled muscle.
- For two to three days after the injury, the individual should avoid alcohol, heat, running and massage in order to prevent further injury. If there is no symptom of inflammation, apply heat over the affected area, massage and move it gently.
- Take over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen to help minimize the pain and inflammation.
- Seek medical help if the pain is severe, there is tenderness around the affected area and if the symptoms still persist for many days.