Sonno Sleep Center

Restless Legs Syndrome

Physician consults patients, knee problems, injuries, office syndrome, concept of physical therapy

One other relatively common disorder is restless legs syndrome. This disorder is diagnosed based on a history of restlessness or discomfort predominantly in the legs, and typically occurring in the evening or when a person sits or lies down for a prolonged period of time. The sensation in the legs is relieved when that person gets up and/or moves around.

Restless legs syndrome can run in families. It is most common in older adults, and symptoms tend to increase with age. Symptoms may occur earlier in life, especially in association with neuropathy, kidney failure, anemia or pregnancy.

Most restless legs syndrome sufferers also have periodic limb movements during sleep. These are typically noticed by a bedpartner as a “kick” or a “pulling up” of the leg and foot off and on throughout the night. Some individuals may experience these movements as part of the aging process and may not have or develop restless legs symptoms.

The treatment for restless legs syndrome usually involves avoiding behaviors that may make symptoms worse, such as sleep deprivation and alcohol consumption. Medications also may be used to treat symptoms in the evenings and during sleep.

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