Skip to content
Font Size

Tips for Restless Legs Syndrome Relief

Do you itch to move your legs at night or at work? Try these 24 tips for lifestyle relief.
By
WebMD Feature

Do you have aching, creeping, crawling, or prickling sensations in your legs when you lie down or sit still? Those are the classic symptoms of a common disorder called restless legs syndrome.

An estimated 5% to 15% of adults have restless legs syndrome (RLS), and up to 19% of pregnant women develop RLS symptoms during pregnancy. Restless legs syndrome does not cause serious health problems, but can interfere with sleep and lead to severe fatigue. Here are tips for a symptom-free lifestyle.

Recommended Related to Sleep Disorders

Sleeping Pill Safety: 10 Dos and Don'ts

It's 3 a.m. and you're staring at the green glow of your digital clock, wondering if you'll get any shut-eye before the alarm blasts in a few short hours. After several sleepless nights, you're feeling cranky and lethargic. Is it safe to start taking a sleepmedication? Many people turn to sleep aids because insomnia and sleep shortage have become commonplace in this country, leading to potentially serious consequences. In a 2008 National Sleep Foundation poll, 29% of respondents -- nearly one-third...

Read the Sleeping Pill Safety: 10 Dos and Don'ts article > >

8 Stretching and Movement Tips to Ease Restless Legs

  1. Get moving at lunchtime: Take your sandwich with you for a walk to the park or around the block.
  2. Give your circulation -- and you -- an afternoon boost; jog in place for a few minutes.
  3. Work out the kinks at work: Take a 5-minute break every hour -- get up, stretch, walk around.
  4. Do your body a favor and ease RLS symptoms -- start and end your day by stretching your legs.
  5. Road trip? Whether passenger or driver, stay alert and loose. Stop often for a good stretch.
  6. Ease mind and body -- and restless legs -- with a gentle leg massage.
  7. Jetting off on a business trip? Request an aisle seat when you fly. Then give your circulation a boost by getting up frequently.
  8. Got the 3 o'clock slump? Skip the coffee, get up and do leg stretches for 5 minutes.

8 Lifestyle Tips to Ease Restless Legs Syndrome

  1. On a conference call? Watching TV? Use that time to give your legs a gentle massage.
  2. Unwind with a hot bath. It relaxes body and soul -- and for some it soothes RLS symptoms, too.
  3. Chill out: Ice packs may calm those restless legs.
  4. Are you getting enough iron? Iron deficiency is one cause of RLS. Talk to your doctor.
  5. Bottoms up? Go easy on the alcohol. It can make RLS symptoms worse.
  6. Ease symptoms -- and get a better night's sleep -- avoid heavy meals close to bedtime.
  7. Relaxation techniques, such as meditation or progressive muscle relaxation, may reduce RLS symptoms.
  8. Certain drugs can cause RLS. Take medications, including herbal remedies, only as directed by your doctor.

Today on WebMD

fatigued senior woman
We’ve got 10 tips to show you how
Man snoring in bed
Know your myths from your facts.
 
Young woman sleeping
What do your dreams say about you?
woman eith hangover
It’s common, and really misunderstood.
 
Young woman sleeping
Quiz
Cannot sleep
Video
 
child sitting in bed
Article
Woman with insomnia
Quiz
 
nurse sleeping
ARTICLE
Foods That Help Or Harm Your Sleep
SLIDESHOW
 
Insomnia 20 Tips For Better Sleep
Slideshow
Pain at Night
ARTICLE