Ever have the feeling that your legs just can’t seem to sit still or get comfortable? Called Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS), this uncomfortable “creepy” sensation in the legs or arms often strikes during periods of rest and can make sleeping or relaxing nearly impossible. Fortunately, we can help relieve this pesky condition, which affects up to 10 percent of the population. Here are five helpful suggestions for getting relief:
See a doctor.
Your first step is seeing your primary care physician or a board-certified vein doctor like Dr. Surya Challa to rule out venous disease as a cause. Doctors can also prescribe certain medications that can reduce leg motion by increasing dopamine in the brain.
Check your iron level.
Correcting an iron deficiency can greatly relieve RLS symptoms. Your doctor can test your iron levels and prescribe an iron supplement, if needed.
Caffeine can exacerbate RLS. Cut out caffeinated products such as coffee, tea, sodas, and chocolate for a few weeks to see if your symptoms improve.
Moderate levels of exercise may help relieve your RLS symptoms, but don’t overdo it! Working out excessively or too late in the day can worsen symptoms.
Get enough sleep.
Fatigue tends to worsen RLS symptoms, so be sure to get your Z’s by following good sleep habits. This means sleeping in a cool, quiet, and comfortable space and going to bed at a regular time.