If you have a hard time controlling your leg movements, you may be suffering from restless legs syndrome, also known as RLS.
RLS is a neurological disorder that affects three million more Americans every year - so you don’t have to deal with restless leg syndrome symptoms alone. Learn more about this condition and how you can treat RLS naturally.
Restless legs syndrome is a type of nerve issue according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. While it is called restless legs syndrome, it is actually more like a restless body condition. It occurs when the nerves in your legs, as well as throughout the rest of your body, become overly stimulated. As a result, you have a difficult time relaxing and settling down, especially in the evening.
According to research by the Johns Hopkins Center for Restless Legs Syndrome, the cause for this restlessness has been narrowed down to three causes:
- Brain dopamine concentrations
- Brain iron concentrations
While you can’t take a pill to make your RLS disappear, there are ways to reduce the symptoms of this disorder.
What are the Symptoms?
Most people who have RLS experience leg pain and cramping. However, you could also have an urge to move your legs, similar to a twitch or muscle spasm but on a larger scale. This makes it difficult when trying to lie down to go to sleep at night, which is often what causes people to see the doctor.
A diagnosis of restless legs syndrome can offer peace of mind, as well as pain relief from this nerve condition. In addition to being unable to fall asleep because of the urge to move, you may also suffer from sleep deprivation and daytime sleepiness due to your condition.
Remedies for Restless Leg
At this time, there is no cure for restless legs syndrome. but certain remedies can combat the symptoms. If you are in the middle of a bout with restless leg syndrome, get up and move around. Moving your legs and body can temporarily ease the symptoms. For ongoing RLS management, consider other treatments, such as lifestyle modifications and prescription drugs.
Lifestyle Changes to Treat RLS
As noted by the Restless Legs Syndrome Foundation, the least costly and most progressive method of treatment is to commit to lifestyle modifications that can lessen your symptoms drastically.
The biggest offender for restless leg sufferers is caffeine and stimulants. If you ingest caffeine or more sugar than recommended for you on a daily basis, it can aggravate RLS symptoms. Cut back or eliminate these stimulants from your diet. Also, nix nicotine as this is also a stimulant.
While you might think that being active would increase restless legs syndrome, that is not the case. RLS is a neurological disorder; it is not caused by being too active or inactive. Getting regular aerobic exercise is beneficial for your cardiovascular health – and your cardiovascular system helps to keep your nervous system in good functioning order. Additionally, exercising releases tension and anxiety from your body, while flooding it with feel-good endorphins. These hormones help you relax and reduce pain.
Try Relaxation Techniques
Speaking of relaxing, the final self-care tip for treating restless legs syndrome incorporating relaxation techniques into your regular routine, such as regular stretching, yoga postures, deep breathing, meditation, or some similar activity. This will help to reduce stress and anxiety, so that you are able to relax without suffering from restless legs syndrome. If you combine these treatments with a healthy night’s sleep, then you can reduce your restless legs syndrome symptoms naturally.
Prescription Drug Treatment
Another valid way to treat restless legs syndrome is to seek medical attention. Your doctor can prescribe medication to treat restless leg syndrome symptoms. You may also be suffering from an underlying condition that, when treated, will resolve your restless legs. Contact your medical doctor to find out more about prescription drugs for RLS treatment.