Crazy Legs: Restless Leg Syndrome

A  medical condition in which the sufferer feels uncomfortable sensations in their legs which makes them restless, can be unsettling. In RLS, the this unpleasant feeling which is experienced more in the evenings subsides only temporarily.

What makes RLS difficult is not just its symptoms but people’s ignorance. Due to the unawareness of such a condition it fails to get it diagnosed. People fail to realise that these sensations of crawling, pulling, throbbing or itching is nothing but a physical manifestation of a neurological disorder. They keep moving their legs  and cannot resist the urge to do so. Though this sounds harmless, it causes a lot of emotional stress for the sufferers.

Symptoms of RLS

Crawling

Creeping

Pulling

Throbbing

Itching

Pain

Tugging

Gnawing

Burning

Undefiable sensations

Inexplicable urge to move legs

Some people twitch their legs while asleep and in some cases they do it when awake too. This condition relates to chronic insomnia, day time drowsiness and mental anguish.

Primary or Secondary

Primary RLS has no cause (often hereditary) while secondary RLS can occur due to another illness like Diabetic neuropathy or chronic vascular disease.

Diagnosis

This is fairly easy. Doctors can make a diagnose by asking some questions and by doing a physical examination. However, diagnosis becomes simple when the sufferer visits the doctor while experiencing symptoms.

Home Remedies and Alternatives

1. One quick remedy that comes to my mind is chamomile. A mild sedative, it can ease muscle contractions. A cup of chamomile tea can be taken an hour before sleep.

2. Calcium is another supplement that can help with spasms.

3. Malabsorption being a good cause, the sufferer may have nutrient deficiencies which can be controlled through supplements. Your doctor is the best judge here.

4. Reduce tobacco, alcohol and bade good bye to caffeine.

5. Make sure to exercise daily.

6. Practise relaxation techniques like yoga, meditation and pranayama.

7. Applying ice and hot packs alternatively can help.

8. Take a warm and good massage before bed time.

 -Aparna K. V.

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