What Causes Muscle Spasms in the Arms and Legs?

Some causes of muscle spasms in the arms and legs are dehydration, muscle fatigue, insufficient stretching, spinal cord injuries and poor blood circulation, according to WebMD. Side effects from medications, such as Lasix, Microzide and Aricept, can also cause muscle spasms. Other more serious causes of muscle spasms are cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, ALS, stroke and brain injury, states Healthline.

Muscle spasms in these serious cases occur because nerve impulses that control muscle movement are damaged, notes Healthline. People suffering from ALS are often unable to walk, eat and perform everyday tasks because the nerve cells in the brain are dead.

Muscle spasms are also called charley horses and are characterized by involuntary contraction of muscles, explains WebMD. Most muscle spasms usually involve the muscle groups in the back of the lower leg, hamstrings and quadriceps, notes MedicineNet. Massaging, stretching and icing the muscle are usual treatments for muscle spasms. Bathing with Epsom salt also helps relieve the pain and stop the muscle spasm. Individuals looking to avoid muscle spasms should stay hydrated, stretch before physical activity and eat food rich in calcium, magnesium and vitamins. Muscle spasms can occur after physical activity, but if the problem persists, a person should seek immediate help from a doctor.