Magnesium and Restless Leg Syndrome
Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a disorder of the part of the nervous system that affects movements of the legs. Because it usually interferes with sleep, it also is considered a sleep disorder. RLS can be caused by magnesium deficiency which affects 85- 90% of the population.
Symptoms of Restless Legs Syndrome
People with RLS have strange sensations in their legs and an irresistible urge to move their legs to relieve the sensations. The sensations are difficult to describe: they are not painful, but an uncomfortable, "itchy," "pins and needles," or "creepy crawly" feeling deep in the legs. The sensations are usually worse at rest, especially when lying in bed. The sensations lead to walking discomfort, sleep deprivation, and stress.
The severity of RLS symptoms ranges from mild to intolerable. Symptoms get gradually worse over time in about two thirds of people with the condition and may be severe enough to be disabling.
The symptoms are generally worse in the evening and night and less severe in the morning. While the symptoms are usually quite mild in young adults, by age 50 the symptoms may cause severe nightly sleep disruption that can significantly impair a person's quality of life.
Treatments for RLS
Although movement brings relief to those with RLS, it is generally only temporary. For those with mild to moderate symptoms, prevention is key, and many physicians suggest certain lifestyle changes and activities to reduce or eliminate symptoms.
- Decreased use of caffeine, alcohol, and tobacco may provide some relief.
- Physicians suggest taking magnesium supplements like Natural Calm's Citrate powder to relax muscles and joints
- Maintaining a regular sleep pattern can reduce symptoms. Some individuals, finding that RLS symptoms are minimized in the early morning, change their sleep patterns.
- Regular moderate exercise helps them sleep better; on the other hand, excessive exercise has been reported by some patients to aggravate RLS symptoms.
- Taking a hot bath, massaging the legs, or using a heating pad or ice pack can help relieve symptoms in some patients. Although many patients find some relief with such measures, rarely do these efforts completely eliminate symptoms.