Do you suffer from leg cramps or restless, ‘twitchy’ legs especially at night?
As a runner, I regularly suffer from this and it can be frustrating and annoying. I look forward to hopping into bed, especially in the cooler months and relaxing. Five minutes later and the dreaded restless legs start and relaxation and a good night’s sleep goes out the door. Usually I have to stand up and walk around to bring some relief.
According to Better Health, “Around five out of every 100 people will experience RLS at some time. Usually both legs are affected, but it is not uncommon to experience the unpleasant sensations in only one leg. The symptoms can be mild, moderate or severe. In severe cases, the person may be unable to sleep.”
Restless Leg Syndrom or RLS as it is known is quite common and no one knows what causes the condition, however Iron deficiency is an important factor.
If you suffer from this annoying condition here are 5 Tips to alleviate the symptoms
Try to exercise everyday earlier rather than later in the day is the best time. A 30 minute walk will not only keep you healthy but help alleviate symptoms. The exercise should be gentle and not too strenuous.
Use relaxation techniques to relieve muscle tension and stress. Practices such as yoga provide good relaxation techniques. Take a warm bath, read a book or meditate before bed to relax not just your muscles but also your mind.
3. Stretching & Massage
Simple, gentle stretching exercises before bed will help the muscles to relax. Massage your muscles with a soothing oil.
4. Hot or Cold Packs
Use a hot or cold pack on your calf muscles to provide relief.
5. Vitamin Supplements
B6, Iron, Magnesium or Folic Acid deficiencies can cause RLS. Talk to your G.P. who could run some blood tests to see if you are deficient in anything, before you spend money on supplements.
This article from Better Health provides details of RLS, the symptoms, possible causes and treatments.