Restless Legs Syndrome symptoms are often unrecognized when not very intensive. RLS is a neurological sensory disorder that causes an uncomfortable sensation in the legs and a strong urge to move them. As it frequently occurs at night, usually disrupting sleep, it is also characterized as a sleep disorder. However, symptoms can arise at any time of day, but usually are more severe in the evening or during the night. This condition affects up to 10% of Americans, and can occur at any age, although it is more frequently reported in middle-aged and older populations. The cause of RLS is unknown, but can be due to genetic background or as a result of another neurological issue. Restless Legs Syndrome symptoms can vary in severity and duration, but it is easily diagnosed due to certain signs.
If you think you are suffering from RLS, read on to learn about the symptoms of restless leg syndrome, and what signs to look out for.
Signs and Symptoms of Restless Leg Syndrome
Symptoms of restless leg syndrome usually occur due to long periods of lying down or sitting, but it can vary significantly in different cases. The tell-tale sign of RLS is defined as an aching, throbbing, itching or pulling sensation in the lower limbs. Although individuals usually feel the sensations in one side of the body, it can also affect both sides. The severity ranges, and can be described as an annoying uncomfortable sensation, to severe pain.
As RLS causes this sensation, individuals feel the need to keep moving their legs to minimize discomfort. Sufferers commonly pace around the room, shake their legs, move them while sitting, or keep tossing and turning in bed if the sensation arises at night. Although uncommon, individuals can also feel this sensation in the arms.
Other symptoms of RLS are sleep-related. As RLS commonly occurs at night, it can cause sleep disturbances, daytime fatigue, sleepiness, involuntary movements that occur during sleep, and general irritability.
During the early stages of the condition, RLS usually occurs in bouts, where individuals may experience remission for a couple of weeks, followed by a few weeks of uncomfortable symptoms. Generally, progression of this disorder is very slow in healthy individuals, but can develop quickly if an underlying medical condition is present.
How Is RLS Diagnosed
If you think you are suffering from symptoms of restless leg syndrome, it is important to visit a physician to obtain treatment. Since there are no specific tests for RLS, a physician will diagnose you based on these criteria:
1) Irresistible need to move legs due to abnormal sensations in the lower limbs
2) The urge to move your legs worsens with rest
3) The urge to move your legs is relieved temporarily by movements
4) The urge to move your legs increases at night
5) There is no other underlying condition present that may cause the above symptoms
After examination, the physician will determine the triggers that bring about your RLS, frequency and severity of your symptoms, and a medical and family history. In some cases, sleep quality is also analyzed to support the diagnosis of RLS. If other sleep disorders are discovered, it is important to treat them as they may affect the severity of RLS.
Restless Legs Syndrome Treatment
RLS is generally very treatable, with many natural home remedies and lifestyle changes that can relieve symptoms. For starters, why don’t you try to increase the magnesium levels in your body? Magnesium has been shown to play a large role in relaxing muscles in the body, by regulating the nervous system. To boost magnesium levels, try Seven Mineral’s Restless Legs Magnesium Spray, which can provide quick relief and contains essential oils to soothe the muscles. For more information on other treatment remedies that you can try, be sure to visit this article that describes a variety of approaches to treating RLS.
As sleep deprivation is one of the most leading public health concerns of today, it is important to improve the quality of your sleep. Because RLS is strongly linked to sleep quality, don’t underestimate the effect it can have on your health! Take control of your health and sleep, and treat the condition today!