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Restless leg syndrome is a manageable disorder. Many prefer to use natural home RLS remedies to keep their restless leg under control.
by Brad Chase
Restless leg syndrome is a non-life threatening, but very disruptive health disorder.
RLS can drastically affect quality of life, reducing sleep and causing many uncomfortable situations, as the legs often feel they need to move during times when getting up and moving may not be easy or possible.
There are several medications for RLS, but often those suffering from the disorder prefer to depend on more natural strategies. Below are several natural and home remedies for restless leg syndrome that you can try.
Remedies for RLS – Prevention
Prevention is the key to combatting RLS. Most strategies are designed to stop RLS when it occurs, but ideally you want to control how often you experience RLS symptoms at all. For that, consider the following remedies for restless leg syndrome:
First and foremost, you'll need to make some dietary changes. Cutting out caffeine may be a good place to start. Caffeine intake has been linked to bouts of RLS, including caffeine from chocolate and sodas.
Improving your vitamin intake is valuable as well. Restless leg syndrome has been linked to iron deficiency, B12 deficiency, and many others.
Ensuring you're getting enough of these vitamins is important for preventing and managing restless leg syndrome, and should be part of any remedy for RLS.
Moderate (but not intense) aerobic exercise is also a tool to combat RLS. Generally, by running or fast walking before the RLS symptoms kick in, the body doesn't appear to need as much stimulation, and so restless leg symptoms appear to decrease.
It's not clear what the connection is between exercise and RLS, but aerobic exercise does appear to be an effective remedy for restless leg.
Because the cause of restless leg syndrome is still unclear, many of the working remedies for restless leg sound unusual, but still appear to work for reasons that researchers still don't know.
It's been shown that cold feet have a tendency to lead to RLS. So wearing warm socks to sleep acts as a natural RLS remedy, and one that can potentially prevent some symptoms – especially if you are someone that appears to have colder feet at night.
Changing the temperature between hot and cold also appears to have an effect on RLS frequency.
Experts appear to recommend taking a warm bath right before you go to bed. The change in temperature may excite the legs, reducing their need to be active. They also could relax the body, and a relaxed body is less prone to waking up as a result of restless leg syndrome.
One interesting home remedy for restless leg is the idea of placing a bar of Ivory soap in the sheets before you go to sleep.
The origin of this believe is unclear, and there is no medical reason to believe that a bar of ivory soap between the sheets can have any effect on your RLS symptoms.
It's likely that this is simply another restless legs myth. Nevertheless, ivory soap between the sheets continues to be a popular home remedy, and certainly there is no harm in trying.
Herbal solutions are also popular options for restless leg syndrome. Herbal restless leg syndrome remedies are believed to treat RLS much in the same way as some of the medications prescribed by doctors, except without many of the side effects and generally available without a prescription.
It's still valuable to talk to your doctor before trying any herbal RLS remedy, because you may be taking medications that interact with the herbal supplements. Still, herbal remedies for RLS may be very effective. Below are some examples of herbs linked to treating the disorder:
Herbal remedies for RLS are not as common as vitamin supplements, but may be valuable for combatting restless leg symptoms.
Those that practice Chinese medicine may also enjoy Chinese herbs for RLS. These herbs have very little research, but are considered "time tested" in the sense that they have been in existence for centuries and are believed to combat the main issues that Chinese medicine believes contributes to restless leg syndrome.
Chinese medicine is not as set in stone as many believe, and much of it is open for interpretation. Most Chinese herbal remedies for RLS are based on a combination of herbal extracts and acupuncture. Both the herbs and medicine deal with the following areas:
Each of these is usually combined with some type of acupuncture treatment designed to improve all three of these areas of ill health.
Appropriate Remedies for RLS
There are countless available home remedies for RLS.
Vitamin treatments are the most common and most effective, because RLS has been medically linked to vitamin intake issues.
But many of these home remedies for RLS may be effective as well. Some, like the Ivory Soap idea, is probably not going to have much of an effect. But others, like Valerian extract, could be genuinely valuable as a restless leg treatment.
The key is to choose one that is right for your health and that you can easily integrate into your lifestyle. RLS isn't curable, but it is preventable with regular upkeep.
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