moderate exercise may reduce symptoms. Avoid long periods between activity
and avoid sudden bursts of intense activity. Talk to
your doctor before you start an exercise program.
Heat or cold. Your symptoms may be relieved by bathing in very hot or
very cold water. Or try a heating pad, hot water bottle, or ice bag. Keep a cloth between the heating pad, hot water bottle, or ice bag and your skin. Do not use a heating pad with children.
Changing your sleep schedule.
Fatigue can make your symptoms worse. Because symptoms
typically improve around 4 a.m. to 6 a.m., try going to bed later than usual or
allowing extra time for sleeping in to help you get the rest you need.
Stretching and massage.
You may be able to control your symptoms by gently stretching and massaging
your limbs before bed or as discomfort begins.
Caffeine and alcohol.
These may make your symptoms worse.
Certain medicines. Some prescription and
over-the-counter (OTC) medicines (such as cold and
sinus medicines) can make symptoms of RLS worse. If you think your symptoms get
worse after you take a certain medicine, talk to your doctor.
Being confined for long periods. Try to plan for
times when you will need to remain seated for long stretches. For
example, if you are traveling by car, plan to make some stops so you can get
out and walk around.
Although moderate exercise may help relieve symptoms, unusually intense
workouts may make them worse. Try to figure out at what level exercise helps and
at what point it triggers restless legs syndrome.
See your doctor if your symptoms do not improve, if they
become worse, or if they significantly interfere with your sleep and daily
In this article
This information is produced and provided by the National
Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National
Institute via the Internet web site at http://
.gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
March 12, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this