Some researchers estimate that Restless leg syndrome affects as many as 12 million Americans.
RLS was once thought to be due to disease in the blood vessels of the legs or in the nerves in the legs that control leg movement and sensation. Both of those suggestions have been rejected. RLS occurs in both genders, although the incidence may be slightly higher in women. Symptoms may begin at any stage of life, although the disorder is more common with increasing age.
Restless leg syndrome usually begins slowly. Over time, the legs become more affected. Individuals affected with the disorder describe the sensations as burning, creeping, tugging, or like insects crawling inside the legs. When RLS is advanced, a person may feel these symptoms in the hands and arms.
Certain medications-such as anti nausea drugs (prochlorperazine or metoclopramide), anti seizure drugs (phenytoin or droperidol), anti psychotic drugs (haloperidol or phenothiazine derivatives), and some cold and allergy medications-may aggravate symptoms. Other triggering situations are periods of inactivity such as long car trips, sitting in a movie theater, long-distance flights, immobilization in a cast, or relaxation exercises.
Because moving the legs (or other affected parts of the body) relieves the discomfort, people with RLS often keep their legs in motion to minimize or prevent the sensations. They may pace the floor, constantly move their legs while sitting, and toss and turn in bed. Exercise and relaxation techniques may be helpful to relieve the discomfort. People combat the sensation of restless legs in a number of ways — by stretching, jiggling their legs, pacing the floor, exercising or walking.
There are herbal supplements such as LegCalm that will help to eliminate the crawling and uncomfortable sensations experienced in RLS. This particular herbal supplement will also aid absorption of minerals from the diet, preventing deficiencies and anemia. as well as improve circulation.
RLS is often unrecognized or mis diagnosed. In many people the condition is not diagnosed until 10-20 years after symptoms begin. Once correctly diagnosed, RLS can often be treated successfully.
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