RLS is a common neurological condition, characterized by uncomfortable sensations in the legs (sometimes other parts too), generally leading to an irresistible urge to move them, for relief. The uncomfortable sensations in the legs often occur or get worse when the legs are at rest (sitting, lying), making it very difficult for people who suffer from RLS to sleep at night.
In most cases, RLS has no known cause, and in some cases, the symptoms of RLS are due to another underlying medical condition and usually disappear when said the medical condition is treated.
Treatments for RLS include medications and lifestyle changes. In this article, we will focus on how to naturally treat RLS.
Here are some of the solutions you can try at home:
Lack of exercise is a contributing factor to RLS. You can do mild exercise regularly every day to help alleviate the RLS symptoms. The exercise could be in the form of brisk walking, jogging, but nothing too intense.
Stress may worsen the symptoms of RLS. Every night before going to bed, try to get into a relaxed state by taking deep breaths or even do short meditation or yoga, to help relax the body and eventually help you sleep.
Setting a good sleep routine is beneficial. Start going to bed at the same time every night and get up at the same time every morning. This will help with the sleep difficulties and make it easier for you to fall asleep.
Whenever the uncomfortable sensations occur, RLS sufferers feel the extremely strong urge to move the legs.
Stretching your legs or other affected parts can help reduce the discomfort.
Massage is also effective because it helps with blood circulation and it can help relax your legs muscles.
Use hot or cold towels to place on your legs or other affected parts to help reduce the symptoms of RLS. You can also use heated or ice packs.
Before you go to bed, have a bath in a comfortably hot water to help relax the muscles.
And you can mix some Epsom salt with the bath water. If you’re not feeling like taking a bath, you can just soak your legs in warm Epsom salt bath and it may help calm the nerves and soothe the muscles.
Take a small amount of coconut oil and rub it all over your legs to help relax the muscles.
Apple cider vinegar
You can either drink or use it to rub over your legs. Apple cider vinegar is loaded with heaps of important minerals for our body, such as potassium, magnesium, and it can improve the absorption of nutrients, too.
Drink chamomile tea before going to bed helps because chamomile tea has a relaxing effect and it can also reduce muscle spasm.
Drink hot peppermint tea before going to bed helps soothe the discomfort in the legs.
Muscle relaxing herbs
To improve the quality of your sleep, you can take muscle relaxing herbs, such as passiflora (passion flower) or valerian.
Potassium rich foods
Potassium is a type of mineral that our body needs to help with muscles contraction. It is highly advised to consume foods that are rich in potassium, such as banana, avocado, spinach, sweet potato, pomegranate, white beans, coconut water, dried apricots.
Magnesium rich foods
Magnesium is also essential in our diet because it helps maintain normal nerve and muscle function. Foods that are rich in magnesium include spinach, almonds, chard, black beans, avocado, banana, yogurt, pumpkin seeds, figs.
Folate helps the body produce new cells, including red blood cells. Red blood cells carry oxygen, and this is important since RLS is associated with a decrease in oxygen. Foods that are rich in folate include chickpeas, avocado, liver, spinach, asparagus, beets, broccoli, lentils.
Iron rich foods
Iron deficiency anemia is one of the causes of secondary RLS. That’s why consuming iron rich foods are one of the solutions for treating RLS. Foods that are rich in iron include dark green leafy vegetables (such as spinach), beef, seafood, beans.
People who suffer from RLS are advised to avoid alcohol consumption, smoking, caffeine intake, and certain prescription medications. If the case of your RLS is severe, you are encouraged to see and consult with your doctor to get the proper treatments.