Restless Legs Syndrome: Seeking Help
Studies estimate that one out of 10 people suffer from restless legs, yet its not always easy to find help and support. Many people with RLS never receive proper treatment. Part of the problem is that its hard to explain and sufferers are often dismissed as being nervous. Those who havent experienced the distressing symptoms may not understand how severely they can impact the quality of your life. Even doctors may not take restless legs seriously, recognize the symptoms, or realize that they point to a real medical condition.
The good news is that recent research has increased our understanding of restless legs syndrome, leading to more effective treatments. At the same time, RLS is becoming more widely recognized. If you or your partner suffers from restless legs, theres never been a better time to find relief.
A night in the life of RLS
If you have restless legs syndrome, a typical night might go like this: You lie down in bed, ready to go to sleep, and just as your body begins to relax, the crawling, tingling, or itching in your legs begin. You try to ignore the uncomfortable sensations, hoping they will go away, but eventually the urge to move is too much. You get out of bed to stretch and pace the floor and, for a moment, you find relief. But when you lie down again, the restless sensations in your legs start all over again.
Raspberry Leaf Tea / Restless Leg
This might sound like an odd question but has anyone heard of a relationship between drinking raspberry leaf tea and worsening Restless Leg Syndrome ?I get RLS pretty damn badly anyway, but I started in on my Raspberry leaf tea a couple of days ago… just at the same time as my RLS has given a couple of exceptionally bad night and days. It got me wondering if the rasp leaf is supposed to have an effect on the uterus, effective on a big of muscles, maybe it’s having a stimulating effect on my leg/arm muscles too ????I just wondered if anyone else had a similar experience or if it’s just conincidence and it’s just being in late pregnancy ?? I am keen to help my labour in anyway, so I’m not wanting to just abandon the raspberry leaf, but then again, me being exhausted through lack of sleep won’t help with labouring much either !!
You may well be right twofalls… this is second LO and by the end last time I couldn’t get more than 1.5 hours sleep at a go due to the RLS, so it may all just be going the same way…MegB.. thank you for the suggestion, but as a long term serious sufferer I have already tried tonic water/bananas/iron/acupuncture/massage etc etc. The only things that I find help are keeping my legs cold at night, not doing too much or too little exercise, no caffiene and trying to maintain good sleep hygiene, ie not sleeping during the day unless I really need to…
The Top 6 Home Remedies For Rls
Alright, so you had to see this one coming but I swear by it. Since I began exercising for 20-30 per day I have found that I sleep symptom-free. This is because exercise increases dopamine in the body. The more appropriately balanced your dopamine levels are the better you can manage RLS.
Some of my all-time favorite routines are:
You can also go hiking, take long walks, go swimming, go biking, or do any other exercise that really gets your legs pumping. The key here is a nice feeling burn from exercise. Anything less doesnt work as well so make sure to put in some effort if you can.
Eating a diet high in processed foods and sugar can severely overburden your liver. The excess toxins from such a diet can allow excess estrogen and other hormones to recirculate into the bloodstream. As discussed above, excess estrogen depletes both B-vitamins and magnesium, two integral factors for a healthy nervous system. Lets not forget that RLS is a neurological disorder so a healthy nervous system is integral to managing it.
3. Up Your Magnesium
This one is so easy to do and I bet it will make a HUGE difference in just a few days.
My favorite magnesium supplements/topical applications are:
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Helpful Vitamins And Minerals
Since the condition is often exasperated by nutritional deficiencies, vitamins and minerals can help a lot. B complex, magnesium, and zinc are known to help in relieving restless legs symptoms by calming nervous tension. Calcium, potassium, and chromium are also useful for restless legs, as they support the nervous system.
If you suffer from restless legs syndrome, adding a broad spectrum multivitamin and mineral complex to your diet to cover all the basic nutrients, in addition to any other supplements you are taking, is a good idea.
Home Remedies For Restless Leg Syndrome
I have had problems with RLS and have found two remedies that work for me.
The first is magnesium supplementation, which I see is often mentioned on this site. When I feel the twitching, unable-to-stop-moving feeling, I get out of bed and take the recommended dose of a calcium/magnesium/Vitamin D supplement. I get back in bed and am asleep before I remember to check if it has worked. This doesn’t seem to have a cumulative effect I have to take this most nights. I might not need it a few times a week.
The second remedy I’ve found is a very healthy diet. When I eat nothing but fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans and a little fish, I never get RLS symptoms. As soon as I add unhealthier things to my diet, it comes back. I hope this is helpful to some of you out there and I hope you try some of these remedies before turning to Requip or some other drug.
I’ve had restless legs off and on since I was a child. I would get up and run around the block a few times when I was a child to relieve it. Later on I discover a remedy called Q-Rev for restless legs. They discontinued it unfortunately. But I remembered the ingredients, Vit. E & Magnesium and quinine. I take Vit. E & Magnesium as needed so the missing ingredient was quinine. You can drink a glass of Tonic Water before bedtime and it relieves the symptoms since Tonic Water has a tiny bit of quinine in it. Hope this helps.
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Other Tips For Restless Leg Syndrome
Other health conditions. Studies on restless legs syndrome show that people who have this condition are also more likely to:
- Be obese
- Have diabetesâ
- Have cardiovascular diseaseâ
By treating or preventing these conditions, you may also improve symptoms of restless legs syndrome. â
Sleep habits. You can also create a healthy bedtime routine that makes it easier to fall asleep at night.
Tips for this include:
- Keep your room cool and dark.
- Turn off all artificial lights and electronic devices like your TV and phone.
- Go to bed at the same time each night.
- Cut out caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol in the hours leading up to your bedtime.
- Get physical activity each day, like going for a walk or participating in a sportâ.
- Avoid late dinners that fall too close to bedtime.
Can Restless Leg Syndrome Be Cured With The Proper Diet
Weve all heard the saying, you are what you eat. While this is not literally true, what we eat definitely affects us in a variety of ways. This is especially true for individuals with certain medical conditions. Many people are familiar with the relationship between diet and medical conditions such as diabetes, celiacs disease, and high blood pressure, but not as many people are aware of the relationship between diet and restless leg syndrome.
Willis-Ekbom Disease, more commonly referred to as restless leg syndrome , causes discomfort in the lower legs that creates an overwhelming need to move or stretch. The condition generally causes symptoms to begin in the evening and become more severe as the night goes on. Unfortunately, this means that people with RLS often have a hard time sleeping due to the constant movement and discomfort.
Although the exact cause of RLS is unknown, researchers have determined that people with an iron deficiency are more likely to be affected by the disorder. Specifically, it is believed that low iron levels in the brain may be responsible. However, iron levels in the blood are not the same as iron levels in the brain. Unfortunately, a blood test only tests iron levels in the blood and the only way to test iron levels in the brain is by using specialized brain imaging.
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Understanding Restless Legs Syndrome
Restless legs syndrome is also called Willis-Ekbom disease. You can begin to feel it at any age, and it typically gets worse as you grow older. Restless legs syndrome makes it hard to sleep well and may interfere with your overall quality of life.â
Simple self-care steps and lifestyle changes may help relieve symptoms. Medications also help many people with RLS.â
The overwhelming need to move your legs is the main way restless legs syndrome is diagnosed.â
However, you may also have:
- Sensations in your legs that are only present when you are at rest
- Relief when you move or stretch your legs
- Symptoms that get worse in the evening or at nighât
- Uncontrollable twitching or kickingâ
Restless leg symptoms usually happen in your legs or feet. They can also affect your arms in rare cases. The symptoms usually affect both sides of your body equally.â
Many people describe restless legs syndrome feelings as:
The sensations tend to affect your actual leg tissue and not the surface of your skin. Your symptoms may lessen sometimes and feel much more intense other times. Diet may be a factor in your symptoms being better or worse.
Tip : Get Daily Exercise
Daily activity, including aerobic exercise and lower-body resistance training, can significantly reduce the symptoms of restless legs syndrome in most people. Choose activities you enjoy, especially those that emphasize using the legs. Try to exercise for at least 30 minutes on most days, although not too close to bed time.
The exercise doesnt need to be intense. Simple daily activities such as walking can often deliver all the benefits youre looking for. In fact, highly vigorous exerciselike training for a marathoncan sometimes backfire and make RLS symptoms worse.
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Banana Tea Recipe For Sleep
If you want to use this fruit for better sleep, youre going to have to make it yourself. Banana tea bags are not sold by anyone, at least not yet. Fortunately, its a super easy and cheap homemade recipe.
The prep only takes a minute. Its just the boiling which takes a while. This drink is under 20 calories with 0 grams of fat and very low sugar content.
How Else Can I Relieve My Symptoms
RLS is often at its worst when youre trying to sleep. So its important to make your bedroom a relaxing place that promotes sleep. Keep the room cool and eliminate clutter. Turn off devices that make it difficult to fall asleep, such as your computer and cell phone.
Other changes that may help relieve RLS include:
- quitting smoking
- taking a warm bath before going to bed
- massaging the affected area
- limiting alcohol consumption, especially before bedtime
- distracting yourself with a crossword or book before going to sleep
- using heat or ice on the affected area
- using a foam roller
To give yourself the best chance of overcoming RLS, stay as healthy as possible by practicing common-sense diet dos and donts. For example:
- Do eat a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, especially dark leafy greens.
- Do eat a variety of iron-rich lean meats .
- Do eat tree nuts, seeds, and legumes.
- Dont eat a lot of processed foods.
- Dont consume foods and beverages high in sugar or high-fructose corn syrup.
- Dont eat fried foods and other foods that cause weight gain.
In many cases, RLS can improve with diet and lifestyle changes. Although your results will vary depending on the cause of your RLS, certain changes may take a while to show effects. If your RSL hasnt improved or has worsened after a few weeks, consider talking to your doctor about the risks and benefits of prescription drug treatments.
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Top 9 Diet Tips For Restless Leg Syndrome
Restless leg syndrome is commonly known as RLS, it is a problem of restlessness in your legs. Basically it is not a kind of pain but it can provide you with a severe discomfort. It can also provide you the disturbance and irritated while sleeping at night. It ensures some kind of sensations in your legs that makes them restless. It is a problem that is caused by many reasons and one of them can be the deficiency of the adequate nutrition to your body. Therefore, a lot of diet tips are explained here to help you deal with the restless leg syndrome naturally. You can include such food in your daily diet which will gradually help you to get rid of this problem.
Be Active But Don’t Overdo It
You need to be active, just like everyone else, for your best health. With RLS, you should avoid sudden changes in your activity level, such as suddenly starting to train for a marathon or quitting your usual routine.
“People who have RLS function best with the same amount of activity daily,” Asher says. Doing a lot more or less than that might worsen your RLS symptoms.
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How Does A Tens Unit Work
The devices deliver tiny electrical shocks that manage pain by activating natural opioid receptors in the body for the benefit of pain relief.1 Its a great tool for temporary relief from sudden, acute pain and Ive also found it really helpful for jumpy legs when they come on.
I simply apply the units to or around the muscle areas of most noticeable discomfort and turn them on. A cycle of tiny zaps lasts about 30 minutes. My particular device delivers several different patterns.
Things That Trigger Restless Leg Symptoms
Although RLS often develops from other conditions, lifestyle choices can trigger your symptoms, making them flare. A bad diet, especially one with a lot of refined sugar, can make your RLS symptoms worse, as can consuming alcohol or caffeine and smoking cigarettes. If you lack iron in your diet, you may develop iron insufficiency, which can lead to and trigger RLS.
Sleep deprivation often worsens your symptoms, and because RLS causes sleep disturbances, it often creates a downward spiral, as your symptoms become worse and you get less sleep because of them.
RLS also tends to flare during periods of inactivity. This may include when youre sitting watching television or lying in bed at night.
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What Makes Restless Leg Syndrome Worse
Anything that helps induce sleep can cause an increase in RLS. Stress and anxiety, nicotine, caffeine, and alcohol are some examples of what can make restless leg syndrome worse.
The medicine itself, or non-prescription and prescription medications, can exacerbate your RLS symptoms. Antihistamines, anti-nausea medicines, antidepressants, and beta-blockers are examples of this.
Tips For Restless Leg Syndrome
Two nights ago, I got a very bad leg cramp while lying in bed.
Perhaps it was because of dehydration from a recent hot yoga session, or just too much exertion at the gym, but I abruptly and unpleasantly awoke to horrible cramps in both my hamstrings and calves.
For what seemed like forever, I writhed in discomfort and clenched my teeth as I tried to relax and somehow massage away the cramps on both legs. Finally, I alleviated the cramps, got out of bed, and drank an enormous glass of water with a few teaspoons of sea salt. But the next morning, I was still sore and tired from the intense spasms.
Believe it or not, some people deal with these types of frustrating cramps, spasms, and twitches nearly every night. They are often seized by an uncontrollable urge to move their legs, their leg muscles actually twitch or jerk, and they experience the strange sensation of something squirming or wiggling under their skin. This is called Restless Legs Syndrome and it is a neurological disorder that affects as many as 12 million people in America alone!
The restless symptoms typically strike when you’re lying in bed at night, but in more serious cases, they can also flare up in the daytime, such as when you’re sitting for a long period of time. You often experience a feeling of tingling, aching, itching, or tugging deep beneath the skin of your lower legs — and sometimes even in the thighs, feet, hands, and arms too.
So what can you do about RLS? Here are 10 tips:
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Lifestyle And Home Remedies
Making simple lifestyle changes can help alleviate symptoms of RLS:
- Try baths and massages. Soaking in a warm bath and massaging your legs can relax your muscles.
- Apply warm or cool packs. Use of heat or cold, or alternating use of the two, may lessen your limb sensations.
- Establish good sleep hygiene. Fatigue tends to worsen symptoms of RLS, so it’s important that you practice good sleep hygiene. Ideally, have a cool, quiet, comfortable sleeping environment go to bed and rise at the same time daily and get at least seven hours of sleep nightly.
- Exercise. Getting moderate, regular exercise may relieve symptoms of RLS, but overdoing it or working out too late in the day may intensify symptoms.
- Avoid caffeine. Sometimes cutting back on caffeine may help restless legs. Try to avoid caffeine-containing products, including chocolate, coffee, tea and soft drinks, for a few weeks to see if this helps.
- Consider using a foot wrap. A foot wrap specially designed for people with RLS puts pressure under your foot and may help relieve your symptoms.