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The Restless Legs Syndrome Webcyclopedia @ Leg Pain Guide

This section @ the Leg Pain Guide is about Restless Legs Syndrome.

The RLS Webcyclopedia provides one of the most comprehensive set of answers (to over 100 questions on restless legs syndrome) and high quality web resources for those seeking information on latest treatment or research into RLS. 

In addition to focussing on some of the important and frequently asked questions, this page also places significant emphasis on updates for unique treatments, as well as the latest in treatment methods for Restless Legs Syndrome. 

We hope you benefit from this page.

Restless legs syndromefrom the Leg Pain Guide

Restless legs syndrome is a neuropathic disorder.

People with restless legs syndrome have uncomfortable sensations in their legs (and sometimes arms or other parts of the body) and an irresistible urge to move their legs to relieve the sensations. These problems commonly happen during night, when the person is sleeping or lying down.

This is an ailment that causes significant pain and in addition sleepless nights to millions; and one of the most complex ailments for which no cure has been found (as of 2020). However, a number of treatments have been evolving that try to mitigate and reduce the pain from RLS for the patients.

Over here, we provide a comprehensive set of useful web resources that answer the following questions about Restless Leg Syndrome:

  • What is restless legs syndrome?
  • What are the main symptoms for restless legs syndrome?
  • What are the reasons behind restless legs syndrome?
  • What are the main treatments & medications for restless legs syndrome?
  • Videos, communities, FAQs and other resources for restless leg syndrome

The guide is categorized for the following stakeholders:

  • Patients / those seeking treatment or cure
  • Doctors & medical industry, including medical equipment industry

The above categorization does not imply that the categories will benefit ONLY specified by the category name; it is more a prioritization as this portal provides hundreds of resources, so some categorization brings order.

If you wish to know all about restless legs syndrome, we welcome you to use all the sections – over a period of time of course, as it is a lot content over here!

100 questions & answers on RLS

SYMPTOMS & DIAGNOSIS

  • What are the main symptoms of RLS?

Even many medical professionals mistake restless legs syndrome for some other ailment, so it is important to get a good understanding of the symptoms of RLS.

Main symptom: RLS is mainly characterised by a complaint of an almost irresistible urge to move the legs. This is by far the most important symptom to look out for.

Those suffering from RLS have also complained of associated symptoms in legs that feel like itching, burning, and tearing sensations. Some of them have also described the feeling variously as “bees biting under the skin,” and ”insects crawling under the leg” etc.

Sometimes the sensations are difficult to explain and it’s common for symptoms to fluctuate in severity.

In fact, sometimes, symptoms disappear for periods of time, then come back.

  • What type of doctor should I consult for RLS?

You need to consult a neurologist is you suspect you have RLS.

  • How is RLS commonly diagnosed?

As RLS is a complicated ailment, diagnosis needs to be a bit nuanced.

A precise way to diagnose RLS clinically is by means of the essential criteria of the International Restless Legs Syndrome Study Group ,  They are:

  • You have a strong, often irresistible urge to move your legs, usually accompanied by uncomfortable sensations.
  • Your symptoms start or get worse when you’re resting, such as sitting or lying down.
  • Your symptoms are partially or temporarily relieved by activity, such as walking or stretching.
  • Your symptoms are worse at night.
  • Symptoms can’t be explained solely by any other medical or behavioral condition.

In order to validate the last point, your doctor may also conduct a physical and a neurological exam. Blood tests, particularly for iron deficiency, may be ordered to rule out other possible causes for your symptoms.

Beyond the above, in doubtful cases, neurophysiological examinations, such as polysomnography or a immobilisation test could be performed to confirm a clinical suspicion of RLS. (Source: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17235430/ )

Here’s also a nice diagnostic checklist you or your doctor can use – https://www.otsuka.co.jp/en/health-and-illness/restless-legs-syndrome/diagnosis/

  • Under what type of disease is RLS classified?

RLS is classified as a sensorimotor disorder. The sensory part refers to feeling and the motor part refers to movement. RLS is thus an ailment that affects feelings related to movement – in this case, movement alleviates the ailment.

  • When does the pain or discomfort from RLS happen – time of day / night?

Symptoms commonly occur in the late afternoon or evening hours, and are often most severe at night when a person is resting, such as sitting or lying in bed.

  • Which parts of the leg are affected by RLS?

RLS mainly affects the legs and feet, which is why it gets its name. However, a similar affliction can also affects arms (restless arms symdrome) and a few other parts too.

  • Does RLS affect elders more than youngsters?

RLS is much more prevalent in people beyond 40 years of age than people under that age group.

  • Does RLS persist only for sometime or is it a chronic condition?

RLS is a chronic condition; as there is no cure, this ailment is lifelong for those who are affected.

  • Does RLS affect only one leg or both legs?

RLS usually affects both legs, but it is not necessary that you should feel the pain or discomfort in both legs at the same time. There are many instances when only one of the leg hurts at one point in time, and the same night at a different time, the other leg could suffer from RLS.

  • Is RLS classified as neuropathy?

Neuropathy is a disease or ailment of the nerves. RLS is not classified as a neuropathy disorder.

Even though neurologists deal with RLS, it is classified as a sensorimotor ailment.

  • How long does the RLS pain last during a session?

The duration for which RLS pain or discomfort lasts varies across people, and even for the same person, across days. To a certain extent, it depends on how well it is managed/treated.

RLS patients have had instances where their discomfort disappeared just a couple of minutes after being massaged a few times, while for others discomfort had lingered for over 30 minutes, and sometimes as long as an hour even after they tried out massaging, moving their feet, taking warm baths or using an RLS medication.

  • Does RLS pain increase due to high ambient temperature / summer / heat?

While hot and humid weather (the kind of climate in tropical regions) has been found to make RLS worse for some, for others RLS worsens with cold temperature. There is hence lack of correlation between ambient temperature and RLS.

It has been reported in some studies that extremes in temperature are likely to exacerbate the pain or discomfort from RLS. If this is indeed true, it is recommended that RLS patients avoid extremes in temperature, and when they can’t, use cold packs or warm baths depending on whether the ambient temperature is very warm or very cold.

  • Does RLS pain increase or decrease during winter?

While the correlation between RLS and temperature is not well established, with the current research and empirical data, it appears that RLS is more prevalent during summers than winters.

  • Does the pain or discomfort from RLS happen only at night?

RLS symptoms happen mostly in late afternoons, evenings and nights. The highest incidence of RLS symptoms is during sleep time at nights,

  • Does the pain or discomfort from RLS happen only when the legs are at rest?

Almost always, RLS happens when the feet are resting – usually when you are sitting or lying down.

  • Does RLS pain occur at one stretch or does it start and stop?

This depends.

People have experienced RLS symptoms for long duration as well as short periods. Interestingly, this applies to the same person on the same day/night – that is, in the same night, the same person could suffer a short bout of RLS system and later RLS discomfort that persists much longer!

  • Does something similar to RLS happen in other parts of the body? Restless arm syndrome?

The same principle that affects legs can affect arms too and thus we can have restless arms syndrome too. But restless arms have been reported far less compared to restless legs.

Extension of restlessness from legs to the upper limbs is reported typically  later in the course of RLS, though the restlessness in their legs being the more severe of the two for these patients.

  • Do RLS symptoms happen also while sleeping in the afternoon?

While RLS symptoms most often happens while sleeping at night, it can also happen while sleeping in the afternoon.

  • What specific parts of the leg (shin, calf, ankle etc) does RLS affect?

RLS mostly affects the parts of the legs below the knees

  • Does RLS also happen on the feet & toes?

RLS typically affects the portion  of the leg below the knee. Among these, in a minority of cases, its symptoms appear in the toes. In many cases, RLS symptoms happen in the toes some times and some other part of the lower leg at others.

  • Does RLS cause muscle pain?

The RLS condition can also cause leg pain and cramps in some cases, as the patient tries to move the legs in different directions to alleviate the discomfort or pain.

  • Can RLS pain happen above the knee too?

In most cases the discomfort from RLS happens below the knee.

CAUSES

  • What exactly causes RLS?

Put in simple English, it is a communication problem, or if you wish, a misfiring by the brain.

For those who suffer from this syndrome, the brain many times sends a message to the leg asking it to move when in fact the leg is stationary, resulting in involuntary movement, pain and discomfort. This mis-communucation or mis-firing by the brain is the root cause of RLS, as per the latest research studies.

  • Is RLS hereditary?

Research so far has shown a high level of hereditary correlation for RLS. In other words, in a significant proportion of cases, RLS runs in families.

This also implies that if someone in your family, especially your mother, has it, you may want to watch out for in you.

  • Can iron deficiency cause RLS?

Yes, iron deficiency has been shown to be an important contributor to RLS. (Here’s an interesting take on the link between iron deficiency and RLS from Johns Hopkins and another on the same topic from the Harvard Medical School).

  • Can magnesium deficiency cause RLS?

Some studies have found that magnesium deficiency could be a cause for RLS. However, with the medical research’s current level of understanding about RLS, the link between magnesium deficiency and RLS is not as strong as the correlation between iron deficiency and RLS

  • Is there any link between RLS & obesity?

Obese persons have decreased dopamine (an important brain chemical) D2 receptor availability in brain, and could thus be at increased risk of RLS.

However, the relationship between obesity and RLS has not been conclusively established.

  • Is there any link between RLS & Alzheimer’s?

RLS symptoms usually occur or worsen at night. Many of the dementia-associated neuropsychiatric symptoms also get exacerbated late in the day. This does not necessarily mean a link or correlation, though the same time of occurrence of both RLS and Alzheimer’s symptoms is leading medical researchers to study any possible linkages.

  • Is there any link between RLS & Parkinson’s disease?

As restless legs syndrome and Parkinson’s disease both respond to the drug dopamine, researchers have looked for connections between the two disorders. Some studies have shown that people with Parkinson’s disease are more likely also to have restless legs syndrome than people who don’t have Parkinson’s disease.

  • Is there a link between RLS and anxiety?

Significant correlations have been found in studies between RLS and anxiety and depression in those who suffer from it.

  • What is the link between RLS and insomnia?

As RLS is prominent while people are asleep, RLS can significantly contribute to insomnia. Studies have found that insomnia in adults with RLS is twice as prevalent as it is in the general adult population

  • Can smoking cause RLS?

Smoking (and also drinking coffee) has generally been considered to aggravate restless legs syndrome (RLS) symptoms; and thus, quitting smoking have been included in the health treatment recommendations to RLS patients. However, the precise relationship between smoking and RLS is still uncertain.

  • Can drinking alcohol cause RLS?

Alcohol probably does not cause RLS, but it can make the symptoms worse. Alcohol withdrawal can mimic many of the symptoms of RLS.

  • Is there a link between RLS & diabetes?

Damage to the nerves of the feet and lower leg from peripheral neuropathy could be a direct or indirect contributor to restless leg syndrome. Previous studies have shown that restless leg syndrome is common in patients with type 2 diabetes, who can also suffer poor quality sleep believed to be associated with impaired glucose metabolism.

  • Is there a link between RLS & arthritis?

Among arthritis patients, restless leg syndrome is much more common, though no clear cause-effect relationship has been established yet.

For instance, research published in the Journal of Clinical Rheumatology found that restless leg syndrome occurred in about 28 percent of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), and about 24 percent of patient with osteoarthritis — more than double the prevalence of RLS in the general population.

See also: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3694367/

  • Is there a link between RLS and weak knee / weak legs?

There has not been any study or correlation established between RLS and weak knees or legs

  • Is there a link between RLS & pregnancy?

The prevalence of RLS during pregnancy is two to three times higher than in the normal population and is influenced by the trimester and the number of parity. The main mechanisms that are conjectured to contribute to the pathophysiology of RLS during pregnancy are hormonal changes and iron and folate status.

  • Is there a link between RLS & peripheral neuropathy?

Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a prevalent sleep disorder affecting quality of life and is often comorbid (present along) with other neurological diseases, including peripheral neuropathy

  • Does walking a lot affect RLS?

If you exercise too hard — and this includes intensive walking — it may make your RLS symptoms worse. 

  • Does stress affect RLS?

Empirical evidence suggests that RLS symptoms grow worse during times of stress

  • Does waking up for urination in the middle of night increase RLS incidence?

The onset of discomfort after the person wakes up and comes back after urination has been reported in some cases, though the clear reasons for this are not fully established. One conjecture is that the need to urinate makes the person break their sleep and this break in sleep could trigger RLS symptoms.

  • Will sleeping with lights on increase / affect RLS pain or discomfort?

There is no clear correlation between room lighting and RLS, though sleeping with lights on disturbs sleep and this in turn could aggravate RLS symptoms

  • Do long periods of sitting result in RLS?

Yes, long periods of sitting can enhance RLS symptoms

  • Can RLS have anything to do with blood flow?

Recent studies have shown that restless leg syndrome appears to become more common as a person ages. Studies have also indicated that poor venous circulation of the legs (such as with varicose veins) could cause restless leg syndrome, though the correlation may not be direct.

There is in fact a hypothesis that the crucial event for the occurrence of unpleasant sensations in the legs at night could be the change of blood flow dynamics. According to this theory, acceleration of blood flow in the legs when lying down could stimulate nerve fibres which are closely located to the blood vessels. This hypothesis might explain some aspects of RLS. If this hypothesis holds, treatment utilizing vitamin E might be an easy and safe avenue for RLS compared with the dopaminergic agents or opioids usually recommended for treatment. (Source: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18464174/ )

  • Does being seated on the floor for long periods increase the pain or discomfort from RLS?

There have been no studies regarding this

MEDICAL & DRUG-BASED TREATMENTS

  • What are the side effects of prominent RLS medications?

While there are many drugs prescribed for RLS and each has its own side effects, we provide you the side effects for some of the most frequently used drugs.

Side effects of Requip

Requip (ropinirole) is a non-ergoline dopamine agonist used to treat symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, such as stiffness, tremors, muscle spasms, and poor muscle control. It is also used to treat restless legs syndrome (RLS).

Its common side effects Requip include: nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, loss of appetite, worsened RLS symptoms early in the morning, diarrhea, constipation, dry mouth, sweating, headache, dizziness, drowsiness, sleep problems (insomnia), agitation, anxiety, flushing, weakness, chest pain, leg swelling, high or low blood pressure, lightheadedness or fainting, muscle spasm, numbness, spinning sensation, abdominal pain, indigestion, gas, palpitations, fast heart rate, sore throat, urinary tract infection, or vision problems. ( https://www.rxlist.com/requip-side-effects-drug-center.htm )

Side effects of ropinirole, pramipexole, or rotigotine

Side effects of these prominent medications for RLS include impulsive behavior, drowsiness, changes in blood pressure or heart rate, and hallucinations. If you have an allergy to sulfites, you shouldn’t take rotigotine. You will most likely be allergic to it.

If the above side effects appear like too many (especially for Requip), it could be mainly because these medications try to interact with the working of the nervous system, which is always a challenging thing to do.

This is in fact why it is highly recommended that you consult an experienced medical expert before deciding on a drug for RLS. As with many neurology related drugs, the side effects from such drugs can be severe in some cases. As most people who suffer from RLS  are elderly, such severe side effects can result in serious problems. It is strongly advised not to decide on a drug based on your own research if you are not a medical expert from a relevant field (neurology and related).

  • What medications/drugs work for RLS?

RLS is a complicated ailment, and figuring out the right medication may not be straightforward – and in many cases, it has been through trial and error that the right medication or combination of medications that work best for you has to be identified.

Several prescription meds, most of which were developed to treat other diseases, are available to reduce the restlessness in your legs. These include the following categories of drugs:

Medications that increase dopamine in the brain – These medications affect levels of the chemical messenger dopamine in your brain. Ropinirole (Requip), rotigotine (Neupro) and pramipexole (Mirapex) are the ones approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treatment of moderate to severe RLS. Certain medications, such as gabapentin (Neurontin, Gralise), gabapentin enacarbil (Horizant) and pregabalin (Lyrica), have also been found to work for some people with RLS.

Opioids – Narcotic medications can relieve mild to severe symptoms, but they may be addicting if used in high doses. Some examples of opioids prescribed for RLS include tramadol (Ultram, ConZip), codeine, oxycodone (Oxycontin, Roxicodone, others) and hydrocodone (Hysingla ER, Zohydro ER).

Muscle relaxants and sleep medications – These drugs help you sleep better at night, but they don’t eliminate the leg sensations, and they may cause daytime drowsiness. These medications are generally only used if no other treatment provides relief. 

Use only those RLS medications prescribed medical professional – It is worth remembering that RLS medications need to be prescribed by a qualified neurologist. Non-pharma treatments such as massaging, applying essential oils, cold packs etc., can be tried on your own because they produce few or no side effects. Most RLS medications, as noted above, have their own side effects with many of them affecting the nerves and the brain. Added to this, RLS typically affects elder people. Uninformed choices of medications can hence quite harmful, sometimes leading to disaster.

(Sources:  https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/restless-legs-syndrome/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20377174 and others)

  • Do pills used for nervous problems have any effect on RLS?

Some of the prominent medications used for relaxing nerves are also used for RLS and have been found to be effective in many cases. Consult your doctor or a qualified medical professional before using any of the pills or medications

  • Has anyone been able to find a genetic engineering way to cure RLS?

Considerable research has been undertaken on animal and cell models that represent aspects of genetic mechanisms associated with RLS. By utilizing these models, researchers are gaining an understanding of how certain genes relate to other genes and the consequence of this dynamic gene interaction, particularly as it relates to brain regulation. Such research is also exploring the consequence of environmental stressors like iron deficiency at different ages of the animals and then look for changes within the RLS-related genes. These models provide, for the first time, a chance to actually test new compounds for this disease. (Source: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/neurology_neurosurgery/centers_clinics/restless-legs-syndrome/research/future-research.html ).

This is the extent to which genetic engineering research has progressed for RLS as of 2020.

  • Can pain relievers such as paracetamol relieve RLS pain or discomfort?

There’s no proof that generic pain relievers have any beneficial effect on RLS.

NATURAL TREATMENTS

  • Has there been any new non-drug innovation to reduce RLS pain or discomfort?

There have been quite a few. A separate section below deals with such innovations and breakthroughs for RLS treatment.

  • Do sleep timings/schedules have an effect on RLS?

Maintaining a regular sleep timing has been shown to have some alleviating effects for RLS

  • Does massaging or physiotherapy help with RLS?

In some cases, massaging the part of the leg that hurts has shown to provide relief. 

Many health organizations, such as the National Institutes of Health and the National Sleep Foundation, in fact suggest massaging as an at-home treatment for RLS ( https://www.healthline.com/health/restless-leg-syndrome/treatments#massage )

  • Can oil massages reduce RLS pain or discomfort?

Leg massages could be a simple and effective way to reduce the pain and discomfort from RLS for many. While in some cases it provides only temporary relief, in others a 5-10 minute massaging of the affected area has been shown to result in a good sleep. 

  • Can warm baths reduce RLS pain or discomfort?

Warm baths have been recommended by some experts for RLS, and for some people warm baths are reported to have been effective. But it is not clear what percentage of those suffering from RLS have actually benefitted from this treatment.

  • Can applying cold packs reduce RLS pain or discomfort?

Applying cold packs to the affected area is a less used technique and discussed relatively little compared to application of warm baths. But similar to warm baths, while this might work for some, there’s no reliable estimate of the extent to which this has benefitted those suffering from RLS.

Be it massaging, warm baths, or cold packs, one reason why those suffering from RLS can try these is because they are so easy to do and can be done from the comfort of home with very little support and at very little expense.

  • Does walking slowly reduce RLS pain or discomfort?

Any leg movement, including walking, has the potential to reduce the discomfort and pain from RLS. However, it is advised that those wishing to alleviate RLS walk very slowly, especially as RLS affects them at nights and disturbs them from their asleep.

  • Does yoga help reduce RLS pain or discomfort?

Yoga, as a form of exercise has the potential to alleviate RLS pain or discomfort, but there’s no conclusive medical evidence on the efficacy of yoga for RLS treatment. However, different treatments work for different people, and hence yoga could have a beneficial effect for some.

Some studies performed since 2000 on the effectiveness of yoga on RLS have shown benefits from yoga for RLS. A study published in 2012, for instance, found significant reduction in pain, discomfort and stress from RLS for people who underwent a 8 week yoga intervention (Source:  https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23270319/ )

For those interested, here is a resource that provides possibly beneficial yoga poses for RLS – https://www.everydayhealth.com/sleep-pictures/yoga-poses-for-restless-legs-syndrome.aspx . Before pursuing any of these, please consult your doctor or a qualified medical professional.

  • Can physical exercises help reduce RLS pain or discomfort?

Exercise could provide positive results for some people. At the same time, if you plan to undertake anything more than a mild exercise, we would suggest caution and recommend consultation with your doctor before undertaking those. As RLS affects mostly seniors and elders who also could have many other ailments (blood pressure, heart problems, knee problems) that could be affected by specific types of exercises, it is advisable to have a discussion with your doctor and start off on the exercises in a gradual manner.

For those interested, here are some useful RLS exercises from these resources:

  • Can acupuncture help with RLS pain or discomfort?

Some studies have shown acupuncture to provide relief from RLS symptoms.

A study done in 2016 found that, acupuncture along with a low dose of gabapentin (300 mg/d) was clinically useful in the treatment of RLS, and also has an additive therapeutic effect over gabapentin alone in patients with RLS – https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29078970/

And here’s a 2018 study that has provided new insights on the specific acupuncture points that can be used for the treatment of RLS –  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6028364/

However, given the complex nature of RLS and also the limited scope and nature of these studies, we conclude that acupuncture could work for some people, but more research is needed to prove its efficacy for the majority,

  • Are there specific diets recommended, or are there diets that need to be avoided, for RLS?

Of all the food & diet recommendations, one item that stands out however is foods rich in iron. As iron deficiency has been found to have a strong correlation with RLS, iron rich foods could be on thing you might want to have on your diet list.

Outside of iron-rich diets, there is a long list of recommended foods and diets recommended by different sources, but there’s little scientific correlation or proof of most of these diets’ efficacy to treat or manage RLS.

  • Can elevated pillows alleviate RLS pain?

Some studies have indicated that leg elevation could assist in RLS management and hence pillows that enable you to sleep with your legs elevated can be tried out

https://www.accesswire.com/512365/Leg-Elevation-Pillow-May-Help-in-Dealing-with-Restless-Leg-Syndrome

  • Are there specific sleeping methods/tools that can help those suffering from RLS?

As RLS happens predominantly when the legs are at rest, its discomfort is felt mostly during sleep. As a result, following specific sleeping procedures or habits have been found to be helpful in some cases. Here are some suggestions in this regard:

    • Warm up to bedtime. A heating pad may soothe away symptoms of restless legs.
    • Sleep better by avoiding nicotine and caffeine close to bedtime.
    • Sleep better, and feel better, by maintaining a regular sleep schedule.
    • To get a better night’s sleep, avoid alcohol close to bedtime.
    • Try not to make bedtime worry time – this is never easy, but remember, RLS could far more painful than the latest thing that annoys you!
  • Can applying isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) help with RLS?

In some cases, applying an alcohol based solution like rubbing alcohol has proved to be effective in managing RLS. Applying such a solution produces a cooling effect on the legs and this could be helping alleviate RLS symptoms

  • Is it a good idea to take frequent walks to reduce RLS pain?

Symptoms for RLS usually improve when you move your legs or walk, so walking frequently (though at a gradual pace) is recommended for RLS.

  • For those who also have varicose veins patients, does wearing stockings have any effect on RLS?

Compression socks help with varicose veins, which is said to be one of the secondary causes of RLS. Compression socks help improve circulation, and along with the pressure, they help to soothe those twitchy nerves in the legs. The same can be said for compression sleeves.

Thus, it can be said that wearing compression stockings or sleeves is likely to have a beneficial effect for those with RLS.

  • Can CBD help with RLS?

For those with RLS, CBD oil is an alternative treatment that people have used to reduce the sensations.

CBD has strong muscle relaxant and nerve calming effects which has the potential ease the discomfort resulting from RLS.

  • Can Ayurveda help with RLS?

There have not been enough research studies to validate the efficacy of Ayurveda for RLS treatment.

However, here is an insight from Ayurveda. As per Ayurveda, Vata imbalance is the main reason for the development of restless leg syndrome. Hence, the first and most important step towards treating restless leg syndrome is stopping Vata-provoking diet and activities. 

Here are some useful links in this context:

https://www.euroved.com/en/ayurveda/test/vata/

https://ayurvedichealthcenter.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/AHCWS-Food-Brochure-Vata.pdf

  • Can homeopathy help with RLS?

Using homeopathic remedies can be rewarding when using it for self-treatment and should only be done so in low doses, for larger doses it is best to consult a doctor, many of whom are now certified in homeopathic medicine.

Several homeopathy remedies are suggested for treating the symptoms and discomfort of RLS. Some of the more popular remedies:

Aconitum Napellus is used for RLS and anxiety. This has a focus on weakness, heaviness and trembling for the legs, in addition to cramping and burning.

Since it is thought that vitamin deficiencies are often the behind the RLS symptoms, Zincum Metallicum is also suggested to boost the vitamins and minerals needed for the body to work properly.

But the use and efficacy of homeopathy for RLS is not well documented, with few reliable research studies, as of 2020.

  • Does keeping the feet elevated (say, on a chair) instead of having them hang down decrease RLS pain or discomfort?

While there is no scientific proof, anecdotal cases seem to suggest some people have benefitted from keeping your feet elevated while being seated.

  • Can meditation help in reducing RLS pain or discomfort?

Some studies claim that meditation has provided RLS sufferers relief by refocusing the mind and body in a positive way. But there is very little scientific evidence to show the correlation between meditation and RLS. All the same, as meditation plays a key role in calming the nerves, mediation could indeed have the potential to alleviate RLS – this topic hence deserves further, detailed research

  • Are there herbal remedies for RLS?

Many western and eastern herbs, including Chinese herbal formulations have recommended for RLS.

While there are claims about many of these herbs and herbal formulations for RLS treatment, there is little scientific correlation or verification. 

However, as herbal medicine present little or no side effects, exploring herbal formulations, especially for external application, carries very little risk.

  • Can shaking the leg relieve one from RLS pain?

Yes, moving or shaking the leg can relieve RLS symptoms.

  • Can eating meat affect/increase RLS?

Iron deficiency is considered to be a potential reason for RLS. You may be able to treat iron deficiency and decrease RLS symptoms by eating more iron-rich foods, such as red meat

  • What type of bedding and pillows can alleviate RLS pain?

RLS has a significant effect over your sleep. But can using different beddings or pillows alleviate RLS symptoms during your sleep?

Many have experimented with weighted blankets and have reported a positive experience. For reasons yet unknown, a weighted blanket is surprisingly effective at helping to calm your restless legs. It’s a comforting feeling – a bit like a constant hug or massage for your legs.

Another idea that has been suggested at RLS forums is to slip a pillow between your legs. It is surmised that this could help alleviate symptoms by supporting the nerves in your legs and prevent compression, and as a result, you may experience fewer RLS flare ups.

Another solution that can be tried is to switch out your old mattress for a memory foam or natural latex mattress, which can help relieve pressure points. It could work in the same way that a pillow between the legs can. See also: this interview: https://amerisleep.com/blog/restless-leg-syndrome/

  • Can specific bedroom environment – lighting, AC etc. – affect RLS pain?

Sleep deprivation is known to worsen RLS symptoms. Good sleep habits such as maintaining a cool, dark sleeping environment, removing electronics from the bedroom to limit exposure to blue light and adhering to a consistent schedule of sleeping and waking times could alleviate RLS symptoms.

  • Do specific types of footwear help alleviate RLS pain?

There’s no proof that specific types of footwear can alleviate RLS pain, though the right footwear will make your feet comfortable and thus help you sleep better. This could indirectly alleviate RLS symptoms.

  • Does shaving off the hair on legs reduce RLS pain?

No such correlation or link has yet been established

  • Does sleeping in an air-conditioned, cool room have any effect on RLS?

Sleeping in a cool environment could alleviate RLS for some people. At the same time, it should be ensured that the place is not too cold, as RLS symptoms are likely to happen more when in extreme ambient temperatures

  • Can magnetic therapy help reduce RLS pain?

In the context of magnetic therapy, high-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) has the potential to markedly alleviate the motor system symptoms, sleep disturbances, and anxiety in RLS patients. These results suggest that rTMS might be an option for treating RLS. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4733706/

  • Does wearing varicose veins stockings affect RLS?

Varicose veins stockings have been shown to alleviate RLS in some cases. This could be because varicose veins improves blood circulation and this might have a positive effect on RLS onset

OTHERS

  • Whom does RLS affect? Male/female. Young/old?

RLS is prevalent mainly among people who are 40 years old, and women are twice as likely to have RLS as men.

  • How common is RLS?

One in every 10 people worldwide have restless legs syndrome in some degree. That should actually make it one of the most common ailments in the world, though it is not spoken in the same level as diabetes or obesity or arthritis. In fact, the prevalence of a common ailment such as diabetes worldwide is around the same (about 9% of adult population) as RLS!

  • RLS and varicose veins – do they happen together?

Can varicose veins cause restless leg syndrome?

Well, RLS is considered primary RLS. This means there is no known cause for it.

But sometimes RLS occurs due to an underlying medical condition, these correlations are however not yet well established. Varicose veins could be a secondary cause of RLS should such correlations exist. 

  • What is the prognosis for people with RLS?

RLS is generally a lifelong condition for which there is no cure.

If RLS symptoms are mild, do not produce significant daytime discomfort, or do not affect an individual’s ability to fall asleep, the condition does not have to be treated.

In more severe cases, current therapies can control the disorder, minimize symptoms, and increase periods of restful sleep.  Symptoms may gradually worsen with age, although the decline may be somewhat faster for individuals who also suffer from an associated medical condition.

In addition, some individuals have remissions. These are periods in which symptoms decrease or disappear for days, weeks, months, or years, although symptoms often eventually reappear.

(Reference: https://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/patient-caregiver-education/fact-sheets/restless-legs-syndrome-fact-sheet#6  )

  • Is there a cure for RLS?

As of June 2020, no cure has been found for RLS. The best bet for patients is hence to seek ways to manage and alleviate the pain or discomfort to the extent possible.

  • Is there one treatment that has been found to be effective for everyone suffering from RLS?

Different people who suffer from RLS respond to different treatments.

No single treatment (drug-based or otherwise) has been found to be universally effective for all.

  • Can youngsters be affected by RLS?

Most people who suffer from it seem to be the elderly ones and seniors.

Surprisingly however, RLS is more common than thought among children and adolescents, Some estimates suggest that the United States alone might have about 1.5 million children and adolescents suffering from RLS.

  • Does any one single treatment method work consistently for someone affected with RLS?

While some have been fortunate to identify a specific treatment method that consistently alleviates the pain and discomfort from RLS, for many, a single type of treatment (massaging, pills…) may not work all the time and for these people, multiple treatment avenues may have to be tried out at the same time.

  • When was the earliest recorded case of RLS?

Until the mid-twentieth century, the syndrome first described by Sir Thomas Willis in the 1670s, was only sporadically reported in medical literature and in most cases was deemed a bizzare condition. It was only with Karl‐Axel Ekbom’s detailed clinical description of the syndrome (1944) and the polygraphic recordings of Coccagna et al. – https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15165536/

For history and people buffs, here’s a nice page on Karl Ekbom and his work – https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1365-2796.2009.02159.x

  • Are there communities from where I can obtain knowledge about RLS?

Yes. Visit www.rls.org .

Also:

  • Is RLS prevalent in women more than in men?

Many studies have found that women are twice as likely to be affected by RLS as men.

  • Which gene is responsible for RLS?

Research of specific genes and genetic factors responsible for RLS are still ongoing. However, here are some early findings.

A study revealed strong evidence for 19 genes that contribute to the risk of RLS, 13 of which were new discoveries. Additional analyses also found that the strongest risk factor for RLS was confirmed as gene locus MEIS1. A strong association was observed near the CRBN gene locus. http://rlsfoundation.blogspot.com/2017/11/new-genes-associated-with-rls.html

  • Can those affected by RLS jog, run and be involved in sports?

People who have RLS function best with the same amount of activity daily. Doing a lot more or less than that might worsen your RLS symptoms.

Medical professionals also recommend that those with RLS should avoid sudden changes in their activity level, such as suddenly starting to train for a marathon.

  • Are specific population profiles (Caucausian, Asian etc.) more prone to RLS than others?

The prevalence of RLS is currently higher in north America and Europe compared to Asia. This however need not necessarily mean that Americans and Europeans are more vulnerable to RLS, because far less people with RLS could be getting formal treatment in les developed Asian countries compared to the developed countries with a higher awareness of RLS as well as a higher affordability for professional medical treatment for the ailment.

  • If it is genetic, why is RLS not affecting youngsters?

RLS affects children and adolescents too, though its severity is significantly less in younger people.

  • Will wearing specific kinds of dresses decrease RLS pain or discomfort?

There is no proof that specific types of clothing (say, tight dresses) in themselves increase or decrease RLS pain/discomfort.  However, if you’re sensitive to certain fabrics or tight clothing, it is not a good idea to wear them when you sleep, as it could affect your sleep and could thus indirectly result in an RLS pain or discomfort.

  • How many people worldwide have RLS?

An average estimate for worldwide prevalence of RLS would be about 8.5% though there is significant variation between regions. This actually makes RLS one of the most common ailments worldwide even though relatively few people are aware of it.

  • How exactly does the pain mechanism or discomfort in RLS happen?

Considerable evidence also suggests that RLS is related to a dysfunction in one of the sections of the brain that control movement (called the basal ganglia) that use the brain chemical dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter, one of those chemicals that is responsible for transmitting signals between the nerve cells (neurons) of the brain.

(Some evidence indicates that low levels of iron in the brain also may be responsible for RLS.)

Dopamine is needed to produce smooth, purposeful muscle activity and movement.  Disruption of these pathways frequently results in involuntary movements. 

Interestingly, perhaps as a result of the dopamine dependency of RLS, individuals with Parkinson’s disease, another disorder of the basal ganglia’s dopamine pathways, have increased chance of developing RLS.

RLS RESOURCES FOR PATIENTS

Restless legs syndrome assistance communities and forums

If you are suffering from RLS, you are not alone; millions have it. As a result, there are some valuable online communities where you could get help from medical professionals, experts and others who have/had the problem but have found ways to deal with it.

  • Restless legs syndrome foundation – Web site
  • RLS UK -A registered charity, providing help and support to people living with Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) and Periodic Limb Movement Disorder (PLMD) – Web site
  • RLS Foundation @ Blogspot
  • RLS discussion board – Web site

Restless legs syndrome causes & reasons 

What causes RLS? While we do not have ALL the answers yet, medical researchers have been able to figure out in the last decade that it has a lot to do with poor or misplaced signals from the brain to move the limbs when the limbs are actually not ready to move. Kind of a mix up.

What is also fairly established is that RLS is genetic an hereditary – so, it runs in families. Some of the latest researches have even identified the set of genes responsible for RLS.

So, RLS is an ailment owing to misplaced brain signals, and it is most likely hereditary. This much the medical community knows. But why exactly the brain misfires at times is not known, at least as of 2020, making RLS one of those illnesses that has to be categorized under “No cure yet”.

But that does not mean there are no treatments to reduce the pain from this ailment. A range of treatments – both drug-based and natural – are being used with varying success.

In this section, know more about the causes and reasons for RLS from a wide variety of expert sources below:

It’s got to do with your brain

  • Restless legs syndrome – symptoms & causes – A good synopsis of RLS from Mayo Clinic – Read More
  • Mixed signals to blame for restless legs syndrome (2004 study) — Iron-deficient cells in the brain are mixing up central nervous system signals to the legs and arms causing the irresistible urges to move and creepy-crawly sensations that characterize restless legs syndrome (RLS), a Penn State College of Medicine study reports. ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome, insomnia and brain chemistry: A tangled mystery solved? — A small new study (2013), headed by Richard P. Allen, Ph.D., an associate professor of neurology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, used MRI to image the brain and found glutamate — a neurotransmitter involved in arousal — in abnormally high levels in people with RLS. The more glutamate the researchers found in the brains of those with RLS, the worse their sleep. The findings are published in the May issue of the journal Neurology. “We may have solved the mystery of why getting rid of patients’ urge to move their legs doesn’t improve their sleep,” Allen says. “We may have been looking at the wrong thing all along, or we may find that both dopamine and glutamate pathways play a role in RLS.” – ScienceDaily –   Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome linked to changes in sensory cortex – A new study looking at neural mechanisms involved in restless legs syndrome has come up with some surprising findings — that the condition seems to be related to changes in the sensory rather than the motor area of the brain. Read More
  • How the brain kick starts restless legs at night – This new study (2018), which appears in Sleep Medicine, supports the idea that the underlying mechanism for RLS rests in the brain’s “move my legs” center, researchers say, and makes even more sense of the relief those with RLS experience when they get up and move them. “Essentially, the brain sends the signal when it’s preparing to move a limb, even when you aren’t planning to move, so your body is ready and amped up,” says Richard Allen, professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. “The only way to alleviate the feeling is to move.” – Futurity –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome: new evidence of peripheral mechanism – The study, published in the May 27, 2014 issue of Neurology, found a strong correlation between RLS symptoms and peripheral hypoxia. In addition, the hypoxia was reversed with the initiation of dopaminergic treatment, which also relieved symptoms – Read More

Genetic causes of RLS

  • Researchers discover gene responsible for restless legs syndrome (2007) – An international team of researchers has identified the first gene associated with Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS). The work was led by scientists at Emory University and deCODE Genetics, Inc., in Reykjavik, Iceland. The researchers report a population-attributable risk for RLS of at least 50 percent, meaning that were the gene variant not present, more than half of all RLS cases would disappear. The variant is very common–nearly 65 percent of the population carries at least one copy of the variant. Two copies of the variant more than doubles one’s risk of experiencing RLS – ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • Study gives hints about genetic causes of restless legs syndrome – An international team led by the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and the Helmholtz Center has carried out a large genome-wide association study (year 2017) on the genetic causes of restless legs syndrome (RLS). They discovered 13 new genetic risk variants and identified underlying candidate biological processes. The researchers also investigated the biological processes that are most likely associated with the risk variants and made a surprising discovery: They found that genes involved in the embryonic development of the nervous system are mainly involved—despite the fact that the condition usually manifests itself decades later.- Sleep Review-  Read More
  • Here’s the question to Mayo Clinic: Is restless legs syndrome hereditary? Is there an effective treatment, or does a diagnosis of RLS mean I will have it for life? – Read the detailed answer  from Mayo Clinic here –  Read More
  • New Genes Linked to Restless Legs Syndrome – The study narrowed the results to six genetic regions associated with an increased risk of developing restless legs syndrome. Four of these mutations have been previously reported, and two are new. One of the newly identified genetic regions, TOX3, is involved in regulating brain activity. Previous studies have shown that increased levels of the TOX3 protein protects brain cells from cell death, but the link between TOX3 and restless legs syndrome is not clear. Read More
  • The protein profile of restless leg syndrome – Comparing the cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) of women with and without RLS, researchers from the US and Korea discovered there was a significantly altered level of six specific proteins with RLS. The doctor who led this study explained, “Our results reveal a protein profile in the RLS/WED CSF that is consistent with iron deficiency, dopamine dysregulation and inflammation.” ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • Does Restless Legs Syndrome keep you awake at night? Blame your mum | Daily Mail Online –  The condition has a strong genetic streak: if you have RLS, the chances are a sibling or parent will too.  Read More

Other causes

  • Why do your legs feel restless? — BDN Maine –  Interesting perspectives from Dr. Michael Noonan
    • When treating patients with RLS, I find it helpful not to think of it as a specific diagnosis but as a symptom. This symptom can have many causes, even if the patients all describe very similar complaints. For some patients, the problem is found in the leg muscles themselves. For others, it may reflect imbalances in their brain chemistry, an iron deficiency or a drug reaction.
    • When examining a patient with RLS, I also ask if they started taking a statin drug such as Lipitor, Crestor or Zocor before it started. Leg complaints are a very common side effect of these cholesterol-lowering drugs; up to 75 percent of patients taking a statin have muscle pain as a side effect.
    • Of course, there are natural alternatives for RLS. If it’s because of iron deficiency, the patient often requires not only supplements but also help with digestion — iron can only be absorbed in a normally acidic stomach. Using antacids or drugs to reduce stomach acid interferes with iron uptake and can lead to problems such as anemia or RLS.
    • I have found acupuncture to be helpful in most RLS cases, regardless of the cause.
    • Read More

RLS Diagnosis

  • How does a medical doctor diagnose RLS? –  Read More
  • The best diagnostic procedure for RLS in adults – from NIH – Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome diagnosis & treatment – Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome – from National Sleep Foundation – Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome fact sheet – Read More
  • Differential diagnosis and treatment of RLS: a literature review – Patients with RLS are routinely misdiagnosed and continue their lives without proper management. This literature review examines the current understanding of the disorder, provides key points to assist clinicians in differentiating RLS from similar disorders, and explores recently updated evidence-based guidelines for the effective management of RLS –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome – Diagnosis and treatment – Mayo Clinic –  Read More

Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) Treatments

Breakthroughs in Restless Leg Syndrome Treatment

  • New treatment discovered for Restless Legs Syndrome improves sleep –  Read More
  • Breakthrough in treatment of restless legs syndrome — ScienceDaily –  New research published in the Journal of Physiology presents a breakthrough in the treatment of Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS). Until now it was thought that RLS is caused by genetic, metabolic and central nervous system mechanisms. For the first time the researchers show that, in fact, it is not only the central nervous system but also the nerve cells targeting the muscles themselves that are responsible. This new research indicates that the involuntary leg movements in RLS are caused by increased excitability of the nerve cells that supply the muscles in the leg, which results in an increased number of signals being sent between nerve cells. Targeting the way messages are sent between nerve cells to reduce the number of messages to normal levels may help prevent the symptoms of RLS occurring. This could be achieved by new drugs that block the ion channels that are essential for the communication between nerve cells. Read More
  • New Treatment Option for Restless Leg Syndrome – Apollo by Pivotal Health Solutions –   Read More
  • Research may lead to new treatments for Restless Legs Syndrome –  Read More
  • Breakthrough in treatment of restless legs syndrome — ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • Breakthrough in treatment of restless legs syndrome | EurekAlert! Science News –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome brain stimulation study supports motor cortex ‘excitability’ as a cause: Experiments with patients suggest brain stimulation may be a viable treatment — ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • Breakthrough research suggests a potential treatment for restless leg syndrome – Medical News Bulletin | Health News and Medical Research –  Read More
  • medi USA launches new drug-free treatment for Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) –  Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome: New Treatment Improves Sleep — ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • A new, effective treatment for Restless Leg Syndrome: Orgasm | Discover Magazine –  Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome: From pathophysiology to clinical diagnosis and management | Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience –  Read More

Drug-based treatments for RLS

  • Medications – Restless Legs Syndrome Foundation –  While there are many non-drug therapies that can help relieve symptoms of restless legs syndrome (RLS), medications may be an important part of the treatment strategy for individuals experiencing frequent or severe symptoms. If you need to take medication, your physician will work with you through careful trials to find a drug and dosage that works best to manage your symptoms. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved four drugs for treating RLS, and this page provides more details on these drugs – Read More
  • Diagnosis and novel treatment approaches in restless legs syndrome: II. Treatment. – PubMed – NCBI –  The symptoms of restless legs syndrome (RLS) can be managed effectively by treatment. The pathophysiology of primary RLS is only partly understood; however, a strong association with brain iron deficiency, which possibly impairs dopaminergic function, has been identified. Dopamine agonists are the mainstay of RLS treatment, but other therapies, including gabapentin, benzodiazepines, and low-potency opioids, are also commonly employed. In this review, the focus is on the pathophysiology, comorbidity, differential diagnosis, and novel treatment approaches of RLS – Read More
  • Pramipexole (dopamine agonist) vs. pregabalin (an opioid) for RLS – The Johns Hopkins Center for Restless Legs Syndrome –  This resource presents the summary of a study which is perhaps the first clinically meaningful and methodologically excellent randomized trial of its kind in RLS history. It uses an approach, which truly allows a comparison between a “Goliath” in the RLS treatment armament (pramipexole) and an underappreciated “David” (pregabalin) – Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) Treatment | National Sleep –   Read More

Non-drug treatments for RLS

  • A simple set of stretches that could bring relief to your nerve pain – an excellent demo through a video by Dr. Silvester
  • 10 natural sleep aids – Psychology Today Canada – The list suggested includes: CBD (cannabidiol), melatonin, magnesium, valerian & hops, magnolia bark, jujube, L-theanine, 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP), Glycine (also known as 2-Aminoacetic Acid) – Read More
  • Non-pharmacologic interventions for Restless Legs Syndrome Management – Sleep Review –  An interesting overview of many non-pharma interventions. Details provided on the benefits to RLS patients from exercise & physical activities, diet, practice of sleep hygiene, non-pharma compression devices such as Restiffic and Relaxis, others such as iron supplements, hot/cold baths, massages, electrical stimulation, mental activity, use of near-infrared light, and use of vasodilator. Read More
  • Are you missing this simple treatment for restless legs? – Harvard Health – Iron supplementation may be all it takes to reduce symptoms of restless legs syndrome. But many doctors don’t know about it. “The concern is that people are being started on medications first when iron might be a valuable treatment. It’s simple, with relatively few side effects,” says Dr. John Winkelman, an RLS specialist at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital. Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome: 16 natural remedies and treatment for RLS – Quite a comprehensive list, includes ideas on: managing your bed timings, stretching workouts, (non) use of caffeine, relaxing baths, applying heat or cold, physical activity, keeping your mind occupied, being in motion, stress reduction techniques including deep breathing, massage, yoga, sleep hygiene (for instance, blue light is bad!), avoiding smoking and alcohol, checking for iron deficiency, checking your other medications for RLS triggers. A very useful checklist indeed.  Read More
  • Easy and simple natural cure for restless leg syndrome – Times of Oman –  A concise list of what to use and consume, and what to eliminate and avoid. Some interesting/unique points:
    • Medications such as allergy pills and cold medications contain mild stimulants which can cause jittery legs
    • You can even use a body massage vibrator which is very helpful in relaxing your leg muscles.
    • Change from cold to hot, or hot to cold can be effective in treating restless leg syndrome.
    • Deficiency of magnesium, folate or iron can cause restless leg syndrome.
    • Wearing socks at bedtime might work for some
    • Add garlic, ginkgo bilboa and hawthorn berries into your diet. They will help in improving your blood circulation.
    • Daily dose of juice like spinach, asparagus or kale juice, are all rich in folate which will help keeping your legs still at night.
    • Read More
  • 10 myths about living with Restless Legs Syndrome | HealthCentral – an excellent list of 10 myths that will be useful to most anyone with RLS – Read More
  • How to get rid of restless legs: Six ways to relieve the uncomfortable leg sensation | Express.co.uk –  a detailed news report with useful images and illustrations – Read More
  • 6 ways to beat restless legs | GoodtoKnow –  two interesting ways from among the six mentioned: 1. Take a hot or cold bath before you go to bed, and 2. Eat bananas. Read More
Essential oils for RLS
  • The use of essential oils for sleep by Norma G. Cuellar, PhD –  This is an excerpt from the fall 2016 edition of NightWalkers, the Restless Leg Foundation’s quarterly magazine. Discusses the effects of following oils: lavender, bergamot, vetiver, sandalwood, Roman chamomile, marjoram, Ylang Ylang, and cedarwood – Read More
  • 17 essential oils for Restless Legs Syndrome – from UPNature –  useful info provided on the use of the following oils: Peppermint, lavender, marjoram, vetiver, lemongrass, Roman Chamomile, Frankincense, ginger, jasmine, rosemary, black pepper, basil, bergamot, clove, yarrow,  Read More
  • Goodbye Restless Legs Syndrome essential oil blend – Serum contains the essential oils of vetiver and sandalwood which were selected for their unique sedative properties and ability to calm and relax muscles. They’ve been infused with a superior Omega 9 carrier oil. order from Amazon – Link
Massage therapy, acupuncture for Restless legs syndrome
  • Treat Restless Leg Syndrome pain & stress with massage therapy –  Read More
  • 5 massage tips for Restless Legs Syndrome | Massage Professionals Update –  Read More
  • Massage Treatments for Restless Leg Syndrome – YouTube –   Read More
  • Brazilian consensus on guidelines for diagnosis and treatment for restless legs syndrome –   Read More
  • Dr Physio (USA) electric air compression blood circulation machine leg calf foot massagers for body pain relief massager (Black): Amazon.in: Health & Personal Care –  Read More
  • Amazon.in: restless leg: Health & Personal Care –  Read More
  • How to manage restless leg syndrome –  Read More
  • Deep Tissue Massage: Benefits, what to expect, and side effects –  Read More
  • Tissue density restoration massage for Restless Legs Syndrome – Read More
Acupuncture & RLS
  • Acupuncture and herbs relieve Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) –  Read More
  • Pressure points for Restless Leg Syndrome | Acupressure treatment, Restless leg remedies, Restless leg syndrome –   Read More
  • Acupressure massage for Restless Leg Syndrome – HerbalShop –  Read More
  • Acupuncture point injection markedly improved sensory symptoms and motor signs in 2 patients with restless legs syndrome-  Read More
  • The 11 best treatments for Restless Legs Syndrome –  Read More
  • Actigraph evaluation of acupuncture for treating Restless Legs Syndrome –  Read More
  • Acupressure slippers’ health benefits: Do acupressure slippers work? –  Read More
  • Acupuncture point injection markedly improved sensory symptoms and motor signs in 2 patients with restless legs syndrome – The acuinjections at acupuncture points (GB41, BL60, ST36, and SP6) provide immediate relief of sensory symptoms and motor signs of restless legs symptom (RLS). An acuinjection can be promising and safe alternative treatment for pharmacotherapy in patients of RLS. (Images also provided for guidance) – Read More

Restless legs syndrome (RLS) products & treatment equipment for purchase

  • Vectora Accupressure Paduka | Leg Foot Massager | Accupressure Foot Slipers for Both Men And Women – Amazon –  Read More
  • Widecare air compression leg wrap massager enhancing boot wraps using pressure massage to improve circulation, soothes sore muscles: Amazon –  Read More
  • Leg massager for blood circulation air compression with rechargeable battery and cordless – Amazon –  Read More
  • Zurato foot massager machine for pain relief professional – Blood circulation machine/leg, foot and hand massager belt – Amazon –  Read More
  • Unistar unisex acupressure slippers – Amazon –  Read More
  • Varco leg care therapeutic phyto herbal massage oil | Pain relief muscle relaxant – Amazon –  Read More
  • Seven+Minerals Restless Legs Syndrome treatment & cramp pain relief magnesium chloride oil spray – Amazon –  Read More
  • Electric air compression blood circulation machine leg calf foot massagers for body pain relief: Amazon –  Read More

Restless legs syndrome treatment and management – other resources

  • 9 Lifestyle habits to manage RLS – RLS Center – Everyday Health –  Read More
  • The 11 effective treatments for RLS – from HealthLine – Read More
  • Steps to relaxing your restless legs – Dr. Ellie Cannon – Read More
  • A doctor offers health advice for people with restless legs | IrishExaminer.com –   Read More
  • How to manage restless leg syndrome –  Read More
  • How to manage restless leg syndrome – The Morning Call –  Read More
  • First AAN Guideline on Restless Legs Syndrome –  Read More
  • When sleeplessness starts in the legs – Harvard Health –  Read More
  • Getting a leg up on physical therapy – Innovate Long Island –  Read More
  • Practice guidelines: Restless Legs Syndrome – Neurology Advisor –  Read More

Tips for better sleep for those with RLS

  • Tips for better sleep for RLS Sufferers | Healthline –  Read More
  • Weighted blankets: How they work, and why you should get one – CNET –  Read More
  • Treating restless legs syndrome in the context of sleep disordered breathing comorbidity | European Respiratory Society –  Read More
  • RLS Remedies: Home care for better sleep –  Read More

Restless legs syndrome perspectives & opinions

  • How the brain kickstarts restless legs at night – Futurity –  Read More
  • Restless Legs: Why behavioral issues may be linked to your child’s sleep – Health News – 13 WTHR Indianapolis –  Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) — The patients’ perspective –  Read More
  • My restless legs were like bees biting under my skin’ – BBC News –  Read More
  • TheJournal.ie – ‘It’s a hugely ridiculed condition, it feels like insects crawling inside your legs’ –  Read More
  • Weighing in on Weighted Blankets: My Experience –  Read More
  • Restless Leg Syndrome and Nerve Cells –  Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome: clinical implications for psychiatrists | Psychiatric Times-  Read More
  • Patient Voices: Restless Leg Syndrome – The New York Times –  Read More

Restless legs syndrome (RLS) videos

  • 15 remedies for restless legs syndrome (natural) – Part 1 | animated video – YouTube –  Read More
  • New solutions for restless leg syndrome – YouTube –  Read More
  • RLS and augmentation – YouTube –  Read More
  • What can relieve restless legs syndrome? | In Good Shape – YouTube –  Read More
  • Restless Leg Syndrome can be healed with daily practice of Yoga –  explained by Bharathji! – YouTube – Read More
  • Magnesium, restless legs and your heart – YouTube –  Read More
  • Raleigh acupuncture best treatment for restless leg syndrome – YouTube –  Read More
  • Restless leg syndrome with a general surgeon – YouTube –  Read More
  • Acupuncture case of restless leg syndrome. – YouTube –  Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome – The Nebraska Medical Center – YouTube –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome cure – YouTube –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome – Non-drug solution – YouTube –  Read More
  • How to treat restless legs syndrome: massage treatments for restless legs syndrome – YouTube –  Read More
  • Restless leg syndrome evidence based treatment – YouTube –  Read More
  • A new solution for restless legs syndrome – YouTube –  Read More
  • Yoga poses for restless legs – YouTube –  Read More
  • Acupuncture for restless legs syndrome – YouTube –  Read More
  • What can relieve restless legs syndrome? | In Good Shape – YouTube –  Read More
  • How to treat restless legs syndrome (RLS) – YouTube –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome relief (RLS) – Ask Doctor Jo – YouTube –  Read More
  • Relieving restless legs syndrome – YouTube –  Read More

Restless legs syndrome books & guides

  • Restless Legs Syndrome: Relief and Hope for Sleepless Victims of a Hidden Epidemic Book Online – Amazon –  Read More
  • Restless Leg Syndrome :Necessary Precautions & Possible Solutions: (French Edition) eBook: Julie Marsh: Amazon.in: Kindle Store –  Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome: ‘an Inside Story’ Book Online  – Amazon –  Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome: Natural Remedies to Cure RLS and Regain a Healthy Sleeping Cycle – eBook: Chad Warwick: Amazon –  Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome: Coping with Your Sleepless Nights (American Academy of Neurology) – Amazon –  Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome/Willis Ekbom Disease: Long-Term Consequences and Management Book Online –   Read More

RLS RESOURCES FOR DOCTORS & MEDICAL INDUSTRY

Drugs for restless legs syndrome

  • A medication dosage adjustment has helped to relieve my Restless Legs –  Read More
  • Parkinson’s drug could treat restless leg syndrome, study suggests — ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • FDA approves new Restless Legs Syndrome Drug Horizant –  Read More
  • Opioids prove effective for Restless Legs Syndrome –  Read More
  • Pregabalin effectively treats restless leg syndrome with less risk of worsening symptoms, study finds — ScienceDaily –   Read More
  • 4 precautions to take when prescribing Opioids for refractory Restless Legs Syndrome [Podcast] – Sleep Review –   Read More
  • FDA warns of breathing risks with popular nerve drugs –  Read More
  • Common allergy medication worsens restless leg symptoms — ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • RLS treatment 2019: three orally administered drugs currently in pipeline –  Read More
  • Chronic Opioids and Sleep: what prescribers need to know | MedPage Today –  Read More
  • Guidelines for the first-line treatment of restless legs syndrome/Willis–Ekbom disease, prevention and treatment of dopaminergic augmentation: a combined task force of the IRLSSG, EURLSSG, and the RLS-foundation – ScienceDirect –  Read More
  • Challenges and side effects of RLS drugs:
    • Restless legs episode triggered by common antihistamine | A case where PM (pain medications) containing diphenhydramine was aggravating RLS. This brief case history points to a much larger issue of how various drugs (at least some of the most common and frequently used ones) taken for other diseases and illnesses could affect RLS. Detailed study on this aspect and publication of results could be quite valuable.| journalnow.com –  Read More

Unique treatments for restless legs syndrome

  • Is cannabis an effective treatment for Restless Leg Syndrome? – The GrowthOp –  Read More
  • Masturbation calms restless leg syndrome – now, now… | New Scientist –  Read More
  • Liquid soap cured painful leg spasms –  Read More
  • Marijuana Can Stop Restless Leg Syndrome –  Read More
  • Singer Daniel O’Donnell reveals quirky soap trick he uses to calm his restless legs in bed – could something like this could really work? –  Read More
    • A related soap trick – This is how a bar of soap can help you get a better night’s sleep – really? –  Read More
  • Could the misery of restless legs be relieved with a simple foot wrap? –  Read More

Restless legs syndrome & its connection to other disorders

  • Association between restless legs syndrome and other movement disorders – Neurology Advisor –  Read More
  • The link between restless legs & chronic back pain –  Read More
  • High rate of restless legs syndrome found in adults with fibromyalgia — ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • GERD, restless legs syndrome and migraines –  Read More
  • When sleeplessness starts in the legs – Harvard Health –  Read More
  • Restless legs linked to broken hearts – Harvard Health Blog – Harvard Health Publishing –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome may raise high blood pressure risk in middle-aged women — ScienceDaily-   Read More
  • The link between restless legs & chronic back pain –  Read More
  • ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome could be an early sign of a seizure | Epilepsy Research UK –  Read More
  • People with Parkinson’s disease more likely to have leg restlessness than restless leg syndrome –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome linked to psychiatric conditions — ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • Study ties restless legs syndrome to heart, kidney problems: Research draws on database of 3 million Veterans –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome may signify bigger health problems — ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • Study finds high rates of small intestinal bacterial overgrowth in patients with restless legs syndrome | News-Medical-  Read More
  • Association between restless legs syndrome and other movement disorders – Neurology Advisor-  Read More
  • Restless legs and tinnitus | IrishExaminer.com –  Read More
  • Mayo Clinic finds restless legs syndrome in children linked to family history, iron deficiency — ScienceDaily –   Read More
  • Persistent imminent orgasms in women are associated with restless legs — ScienceDaily –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome linked to erectile dysfunction in older men — ScienceDaily  –  Read More

Restless legs syndrome – other useful resources

  • Restless legs syndrome among the elderly – International Journal of Gerontology December 2009 – An algorithm based on scientific evidence and expert opinion was developed for guidance of treatment. Combination or change of medication can be applied to resistant or difficult cases. Since elderly patients are prone to treatment-related side effects, the best strategy is to start medication cautiously and at the lowest recommended dosage – Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome: Causes, treatments, and home remedies –   Read More
  • Iron reduces parasomnias in children with restless legs | Medpage Today –  Read More
  • Restless Legs Syndrome: symptoms and treatment | Live Science –  Read More
  • Restless Leg Syndrome and nerve cells –  Read More
  • What to eat if you have restless legs syndrome – Health Essentials from Cleveland Clinic-  Read More
  • Varicose veins doctors help hundreds of seniors in New York struggling with varicose veins through minimally-invasive procedures – Read More
  • Restless arms syndrome: prevalence, impact, and management strategies | NDT –  Read More
  • How to handle restless legs syndrome – Consumer Reports –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome: a new practice guideline – Clinical Advisor –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome: how to stop twitching legs | Wellness | US News –  Read More
  • Cureus | Treatment of leg veins for restless leg syndrome: a retrospective review –  Read More
  • Local team gives new life to restless legs syndrome treatment – Carle Foundation Newsroom –  Read More
  • Treatment options for idiopathic restless legs syndrome – touchNEUROLOGY –  Read More
  • How is RLS treated? | Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. –  Read More
  • Differential diagnosis and treatment of restless legs syndrome: a literature review –  Read More
  • Restless legs syndrome: learning to live with it –  Read More
  • Exploring sleep-related movement disorders – Neurology Advisor –  Read More

Medical equipment and devices for restless legs syndrome

  • Study reviews medical device treatments for restless legs syndrome – Sleep Review –  Read More
  • Tech could deliver a good night’s rest – Winnipeg Free Press –  Read More
  • This device uses radio waves to track how you’re sleeping | Innovation | Smithsonian Magazine –  Read More
  • medi USA launches new drug-free treatment for restless legs syndrome (RLS) –  Read More
  • Relaxis, the first medical device approved in U.S. for restless legs syndrome | Medgadget –  Read More
  • Stimulators implanted in the lower spine can help up to 1 in 15 Brits with restless leg syndrome –  Read More
  • Sequential compression devices for treatment of restless legs syndrome – Full Text View – ClinicalTrials.gov –  Read More

Guidance for Comprehensive List of Leg & Foot Related Pain from Leg Pain Guide.

(During this stressful period of COVID-19, here’s our research review of the uncommon and unusual symptoms of corona virus disease.)

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Top 20 Web Sites & Guides for Health, Illnesses & Diseases

Bupa – BUPA UKBUPA Global Cleveland Clinic – Link
Cedars-Sinai – Link Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) – Link
Drugs.com – Link eMedicine Health – Link
Everyday Health – Link HealthLine – Link
John Hopkins Medicine Health Library – Link LiveStrong – Link
Mayo Clinic – Link Medical News Today – Link
MedicineNet – Link MedlinePlus – Link
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NHS UK – Link NIH – Link
Patient Info – Link WebMD – Link