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Thursday, July 19, 2018

Restless Leg Syndrome

Are you kept awake at night with the desire to move your legs?? You may suffer from Restless legs syndrome or (RLS). This disorder affects the nervous system at the same place that offers you the urge to move the legs. RLS often is considered a sleep disorder as it interferes with sleep.

Restless Leg Syndrome causes an uncomfortable "itchy" "pins and needles" or "creepy crawly" feeling in the legs. The condition gets worst at night or when lying or sitting RLS may also cause sensation in the arms as well. The disorder can range from mild to intolerable. Just like severity the symptoms may be more or less as well.

Restless Legs Syndrome affects up to 10% of the population in the United States. The disorder can begin at any age including childhood but most sufferers are middle aged or older. Women also seem to be diagnosed with the disorder more than men. In most cases the reason why RLS is affecting an individual may be unknown but it is often related to genetics as one or more family member may all ready have restless leg syndrome. Other reasons include:

  • Chronic diseases such as iron deficiencies, Parkinson's disease, kidney failure, diabetes and peripheral neuropathy often also have the symptoms of RLS. 
  • Medications such as anti nausea drugs, antipsychotic drugs, antidepressants, and cold and allergy medications may contain sedating antihistamines that worsen symptoms of RLS. 
  • Pregnant women may experience Restless Leg Syndrome. This gets worst in the last trimester The symptoms normally go away in a short time after delivery. 
  • alcohol and sleep issues may trigger RLS symptoms and worsen the symptoms. 

For mild RLS try to relieve symptoms via:

  • leg massages
  • hot baths, heating pads or ice packs on the legs
  • developing good sleep habits
For more severe conditions there are medications that are helpful. There is no cure but treatments can help control the condition, decrease symptoms and improve sleep.

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