Have you ever felt like you pulled a muscle and wondered what the heck just happened? Well, it was most likely a muscle strain. A muscle strain is the over stretching or tearing of muscle fibers. They are classified in three different grades of severity. A Grade I strain is a mild strain where only a few muscle fibers are damaged. Grade I strains most likely will feel tender and painful, but the muscle will still have normal strength.
A Grade II muscle strain is a little worse and there usually is a loss of strength. You would be able to tell if the injury was a Grade II strain if there was swelling or a bruise on the area that’s hurt.
A Grade III muscle strain is the absolute worse. This is when the muscles tears all the way through. When this happens you feel a “pop” sensation as the muscle rips away from the tendon. These type of injuries require immediate medical attention because there is usually a loss of muscle function. The Grade III muscle strain usually causes the muscle to look deformed where there is a “dent” in the muscle where the muscle fibers have detached from the tendon.
How To Heal Muscle Strains
Grade I and Grade II muscle strains can be treated with the R.I.C.E. healing method. R.I.C.E. stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Rest is very important because most muscle strains are caused by over working or over stretching the muscle. Your body is telling you to “chill out!”. While resting you should be applying ice to the injured area frequently.
Ice will help the inflammation and swelling go down. I personally recommend icing for about 20 minutes every few hours. Compression is also necessary to reduce the swelling. Keep it wrapped up with compression clothing or sleeves (you could even use an ACE bandage). You want the compression to be tight but not too tight to the point where you aren’t getting blood circulation to the area.
Lastly, it is important to keep in mind that the injured area should be elevated above the heart. This will keep the swelling down. It is pretty evident that the overall goal for allowing the muscle to heal is by reducing inflammation and swelling. This can all be done at home, but keep in mind this is only for Grade I and Grade II muscle strains. As mentioned before, Grade III muscle strains require immediate medical attention. Depending on the severity of the injury surgery may be needed. The length of recovery depends on the individual and the grade of muscle strain.
Muscle strains are caused by over stretching or over working a muscle. There are three different grades of muscle strains. Grade I and Grade II muscle strains can be healed at home with the R.I.C.E. method of healing. It is recommended that Grade III muscle strains receive immediate medical attention.
In this video Mike Lee is giving a demonstration of several different ways to do push ups to increase your upper body strength and overall fitness. Try to add this exercise to your personal workout at the gym or your home.
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Sleep is a naturally reoccurring state of mind and body, known by relatively inhibited sensory activity, inhibition of most voluntary muscles, as well as reduced interactions with surroundings. Without any form of doubt, we all know that sleep is of vital importance in having a healthy lifestyle.
It is different from being awake, by a decreased reaction to stimuli, but is, however, more reactive than being in a coma or conscious disorders. During sleep, most of the body’s systems are in an anabolic state (buildup of tissues), in order to restore the immune, nervous, skeletal, and muscular systems to their top state; this process helps to maintain memory, mood, as well as cognitive function, and also to play a large role in functioning of the endocrine and immune systems.
Sleep deprivation, on the other hand, occurs when an individual gets less sleep than they need to feel awake and alert. When a person does not get enough sleep to feel awake and alert, they begin to experience symptoms of sleep deprivation. The main symptom is excessive daytime sleepiness, but other symptoms include:
reduced sex drive
difficulty learning new concepts
forgetfulness inability to concentrate
lack of motivation clumsiness
increased appetite and carbohydrate cravings
Sleep deprivation can negatively affect a range of systems in the body, causing the following impact or effects on a healthy lifestyle:
Sleep deprivation can result in an increased risk of respiratory diseases.
A lack of sleep can affect body weight. The two hormones, leptin and ghrelin, are responsible for hunger and satiety (fullness) and the levels of these hormones are affected by sleep. It also causes the release of insulin, which leads to increased fat storage and a higher risk of type 2 diabetes.
Sleep helps the heart vessels to heal and rebuild as well as influences the processes that maintain blood pressure and even sugar levels.
Insufficient sleep can affect hormone production, which includes growth hormones and testosterone in men. Also, it also prevents the body from strengthening the immune system by producing more cytokines to fight infection. This can mean a person can take longer to recover from illness as well as having an increased risk of chronic illness.
The benefits of good sleep to a healthy lifestyle, are particularly obvious for people that are usually involved in intense physical activities such as athletes. Studies have shown that after-exercise recovery with extra sleep improves the buildup of muscle, strength, as well as increase in endurance. On the other hand, sleep deprivation causes athletes to suffer from poorer reaction times, longer recovery times, and terrible performances. Humans may suffer from various sleep disorders, including dyssomnias such as insomnia, hypersomnia, narcolepsy, and sleep apnea; parasomnias such as sleepwalking and REM behavior disorder; bruxism; and circadian rhythm sleep disorders.
In general, it is without doubt to say that sleep is essential for the general wellbeing of the body and even the mind. Therefore, it is important to ensure that you sleep well.