Data shows that only in the U.S., more than 5 million people suffer from moderate to serious form of restless legs syndrome (RLS).
In average, one out of 10 adults suffers from this condition, while more than one million kids of school age have RLS.
Symptoms include huge desire to shake the legs, pain, itch, heavy or even mysterious uncomfortable feeling in the legs, during the night.
Although it is not life- threatening disease, it can still lower the quality of life and the ability to perform everyday activities.
If it is the primary syndrome of restless legs, than the disorder is genetic and the reason lies in the part of the brain that is in charge of movement control.
The secondary form of the disease can be cause by factors like:
- Weakened kidney function
- Degenerative diseases of the spine
- Damaged peripheral nerves
This disorder is sometimes a consequence of consumption of some medicaments, like: antidepressants, antipsychotics, antihistamines, but also consumption of coffee, alcohol and nicotine.
There isn’t a specific diagnostic test for the RLS, but diagnosis is established according to the clinical picture. Regarding the laboratory tests, complete blood test, hormonal status determination and kidney tests are all necessary.
The patient is directed to electromyography and measuring the speed of the nervous impulses. Depending on the diagnosis the patient can be prescribed to vitamins, minerals, certain exercises and dopaminergic medicaments (anti-parkinson’s), analgesics, calming pills, antiepileptic’s.
How To Get Relief
Getting up and waking up in approximately same time can decrease the symptoms, and experts suggest easy stretch before going to sleep: sit on the floor with your legs stretched, and then bend the body towards the feet so you can touch them with your hands, and stay in this position for a few minutes.
It is also good to do a hot bath before going to sleep. This will relax the body and the muscles and it will make sleeping easier.
HOT BATH: about 100 degrees Fahrenheit to increase the work of the sweat glands, when you have a flu or cold. In this case, use some sort of immune-stimulating oils of some herbs and after this bath go to bed to have a good sweat.
RELAXING BATH: the water temperature can range from 84-93 degrees Fahrenheit, add a fine oil that suits you the best and with some aroma candle in the bathroom which will additionally supply more energy for you.
RECOVERING BATH: the water temperature should be 64-75 degrees Fahrenheit, and pick a stimulating oil by preference. Enjoy next to a bowl of nice chill fruit.
During the day, easy exercises are recommended, and everyday walks in clean air are of big help too. To get relief from the symptoms, yoga is recommended too, especially the exercises for stretching, deeply breathing and relaxing.
You need to avoid coffee, tea and chocolate since they have bad influence over the blood circulation and the quality of sleep.
In most of the cases, people suffering from RLS, actually suffer from lack of iron in the blood. This mineral releases dopamine – something that helps the control of movement, so you should include more nutritive products in your food that are rich in iron. Ex: red meat, dry plums, chick peas, blackberries and beet.
One tablespoon of rosehip and chamomile flower each. Pour 3 cups of hot water over this, and cover it, leaving it for 15 minutes. Strain it and add squeezed lemon juice and a teaspoon of honey. Drink the tea few times a day and before going to bed.
Make a mixture of 5 drops of basil oil and marjoram each, and three drops of almond oil. Massage your legs with this mixture every night.