Hamstring muscles are located at the back of thigh, consisting of three muscles: the semitendinosus, the semimembranosus, and the biceps femoris. It extends from the lower part of the pelvis, through the femur to the back side of the knee. The main function of this muscle is to enable bending the knee. In addition, this muscle allows the stretching hips. At the front thigh the muscle that supports the balance of the knee and allows it to extend. Joint action of these two muscles provides the flexibility and stability of the knee.
The most common causes of hamstring muscle pulling are: excessive stretching, weakness and inflexibility of hamstring muscle, unevenness of strength front and back thigh muscle, suddenly performing heavy physical activities without warming up, lifting heavy objects and previous injury of hamstring muscle.
Since the pulled hamstring muscle may be a different intensity, different treatments will be applied. Severe injury involving rupture of muscle tissue require doctors help, while a mild to moderate injuries can be treated at home, which recovery usually lasts from 4-6 weeks.
Primarily, the muscles need a break, which means abstaining of strenuous physical activity at least 2-3 weeks.
To minimize the pain and the swelling, it is necessary to apply ice packs and compression bandages. However, injured person must tie the bandage in the right way. It should fit to the leg but it shouldn’t be too tight, because it can cause worsening of the pain.
Also, the leg should be elevated or stretched out to reduce swelling.
In addition, specific stretching and strengthening the hamstring muscles exercises can apply, but only after reduction of the swelling and the pain so the situation wouldn’t worsen. Stretching is done by a person sitting down with legs outstretched, trying to reach for the toes. Person should remain in this position for about ten seconds. This exercise should have 4-5 repetitions and done three times a day.
Some homeopathic remedies like Arnica cream quickly removes pain and stiffness caused by hamstring muscle pulling. It applies to the injured muscle and easily absorbs into the skin. It is completely safe for all people, regardless of age.
Although diametrically opposed, ice and heat may have the same effect on pulled muscle. Showering with warm water, using heated pads or hot bath significantly facilitate the pain. In addition, heat increases blood circulation, which relaxes muscles and thus contributes to the elimination of muscle tension.