Similar to other muscle aches, a groin ache can occur by simply overusing or straining the muscles in the groin. In rare cases, pain may be present due to a serious medical condition. Individuals tend to experience groin aches after performing higher than usual physical activity, or a movement pattern which the body is not used to.
More severe muscle aches may occur due to a strain or torn muscle. When this occurs, plenty of icing, rest, and stretching will be required to treat the injury. Severe conditions that can cause groin aches include cysts, hernias, testicular trauma, and tumors. If pain does not lessen for several days, or appears intermittently, a medical condition may be the problem and as such, a doctor will need to be consulted.
Muscles tend to tighten as they tire. If one’s groin muscles get tired from intense physical activity, then the muscles in that area will tighten up, leading to a burning or aching sensation that radiates throughout the legs and groin. The steps to treating this condition can be done at home and are as follows: rest sufficiently, icing the affected area, and consuming enough fluids.
Experiencing soreness a day or two after physical exertion is common and to be expected. This phenomenon is known as delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) and is nothing to be concerned about, unless soreness is extreme to the point of unbearable pain. For the most part, it will simply go away after a few days of rest accompanied with some light stretching. Persistent pain may be a sign of a medical condition, or a torn or strained muscle.
Muscle strains occur when the muscle is used beyond its normal capacity. This can cause the muscle to spasm or tighten, leading to a muscle strain. Should the muscle fibers in an area stretch too far for whatever reason, the fibers may tear, causing a muscle tear. Both of these conditions can also be treated through icing, resting, and ingesting enough fluid. However, some muscle tears can be severe, requiring surgery to reattach the torn fibers. Muscle tears can lead to groin ache that is sharp and painful. Swelling and bruising can occur, and the torn muscle can clump up together at the end of the muscle.
In some cases, experiencing groin pain may have nothing to do with the muscles in the groin area at all. For women, a groin ache can be due to menstrual pain that spreads to the groin and even the legs. For men, it may be the result of testicular pain caused by an impact injury or other such conditions. More severe conditions, such as tumors and cysts, can lead to groin aches, though this is a rare case and is more likely caused by muscle strains. Should a groin muscle ache last longer than 72 hours despite sufficient rest, conditioning, and stretching, it may be prudent to see a doctor to ensure that the problem does not worsen.
Photo Credit: Colonel Killgore