After a hard day’s work, there’s nothing quite so enjoyable as taking a nap — or better still, getting a good night’s sleep to feel refreshed and rejuvenated. But what if your legs just won’t let you? Restless leg syndrome affects about 10% of Americans, and if you’re one of those millions, you know what a struggle it can be to get the restorative sleep you need.
At Desert West Vein & Surgery Center, our team offers custom treatment options for our patients in El Paso, Texas, so they can lead more comfortable lives. If you think you might have RLS, here are five common symptoms to watch out for.
The key symptom associated with restless leg syndrome is the feeling that you simply must move your legs. The rest of your body might be perfectly relaxed and ready for sleep. Then suddenly, your legs feel like they have to move, stretch, or flex. RLS symptoms can occur at other times, too — like when you’re sitting still in a car, a plane, or at a social event.
Since RLS symptoms tend to occur more often in the evening and anytime you’re resting — or trying to rest — they can make it much more difficult to fall asleep. Sometimes, symptoms can actually keep you awake for hours or wake you from a sound sleep.
Because RLS can interfere with getting a good night’s sleep, many people who have restless leg syndrome find they’re extra sleepy during the day. Daytime drowsiness makes it harder to focus and concentrate, plus it can contribute to feelings of irritability and moodiness.
People with restless leg syndrome tend to feel some relief from their symptoms when they move their legs. If you have RLS, you might have noticed that if you simply flex, stretch, or shift your leg position, the annoying urge to move goes away. Unfortunately, the relief is only temporary, and soon after, the almost undeniable urge to move and stretch your legs returns.
Though an urge to move is often the primary symptom with RLS, some people have other symptoms, like an itching or crawling sensation in their legs. Aching and “pins-and-needles” sensations can also occur. And, you might have these symptoms in only one leg or in both.
Researchers don’t know exactly what causes RLS, but they do know that the condition becomes more common as we get older. A family history of restless leg syndrome, vascular problems like varicose veins, peripheral neuropathy, some underlying medical conditions, hormonal changes, and even some lifestyle habits might contribute, as well. Symptoms can be mild at first, and some doctors may find it hard to diagnose as a result.
At Desert West Vein & Surgery Center, we work with lots of patients suffering from RLS. Once RLS is diagnosed, we’ll work with you to develop a treatment plan that’s focused on the possible underlying causes, as well as relieving your symptoms. Some possible treatment options include:
Our team knows RLS symptoms can have different “triggers,” and developing a custom treatment plan is an important part of helping our patients find relief.
You don’t have to live with restless leg syndrome. Our team can help you find the solution you’re looking for to relieve your symptoms and improve your health. To learn more about the RLS treatment options we offer — and how we can customize a treatment plan for you — call our office at 915-260-4602, or use our online form to request an appointment today.