The earliest I can remember having Restless Leg Syndrome is at 20. I didn't know it than. I now 36 and have found that diet has helped control the RLS. For me, egg yolk and various dairy products spark my RLS symptoms. I also discovered that taking baths or showers with lots of soap prior to retiring to my bed helped reduce my RLS. I use my husbands soap Dove for men or Zest or Irish Spring. All work. When I place a bar in my bath water and let it dissolve and stay there for 20 minutes I get better results. I also found that deodorant Secret clinical strength works when I rub it on my leg. I am sharing this because I have researched many ways to overcome this excruciating discomfort. It is not a joke to me and I can only hope that my sharing can provide someone else with some relief. I too believe that no one persons body chemistry is the same but we have to stick together to find ways to live the best quality of life that we deserve.
There's a few people who seem to think others aren't taking RLS seriously all because others are on this site sharing their positive results from what they've tried. Well for those of you who haven't noticed, most of us who are suffering with some ailment or another are pretty fed up with not being helped by the doctors they see or even medication that's more lethal than the ailment itself. We have chosen to become active in helping to heal our own bodies by making decisions based on what WE feel is right for OUR bodies and everyone has that same choice rather they use it or not.
When people who have had success with a certain protocol share their knowledge, that's such a wonderful blessing to others who have RLS or any other ailment and who DO have the hope of receiving help. Even if it only helps 10% of the majority, it worked for someone, they are thankful! :-) How selfish & heartless it is when people are criticized for sharing knowledge for relief with others, regardless of how ridiculous the method may sound to those criticizing all because the method didn't work for them. So that leaves me wondering why are they even here on this website? Earth clinic is a place where people come and share their knowledge based on what they've tried and what did and didn't help them. Most of the remedies listed on this site may seem strange, weird or unexplanatory as to how they scientifically work so that just makes me more curious as to why people who criticize would even bother reading on this website. If all these wonderful testimonies weren't to my liking, I would be reading elsewhere instead of trying to discourage people who are looking and hoping for some form of relief from their ailment.
As for my own personal experience with RLS, I have symptoms off and on and like a majority of others have stated symptoms are more aggressive when low magnesium and sugar are in the picture. These 2 are the prime triggers for MY symptoms. Once I raise my magnesium levels and cut out the sugar the symptoms usually resolve rather quickly. At times I can eat sugar and a few hours later I will have full blown symptoms mostly in my legs after I fall asleep. It would also be good for others to make sure they aren't dealing with some type of anxiety disorder as well because foods do cause certain chemical reactions within the body and these chemicals sometime cause anxiety to buildup in the muscles and a person can show signs resemble RLS especially if they aren't an active person, based on MY own experience. In my case, I've been diagnosed with both disorders.
I have also gotten relief a few times from doing exercises in which I tighten all my body muscles at once and hold them for about 15 seconds, then I release them. After doing these exercises for about 10 or 15 minutes I can usually fall back to sleep most nights. This may not work for everyone but it's a lot better than not trying anything. Be your OWN critic, try anything that's safe of course or don't! Just remember, you still have nothing to lose except the faith to believe your circumstances could change from YOU not trying.
It's important to realize that 1. the body does know how to heal itself, it's been doing it for millions of years as we allow it to do so. 2. Nutrients/vitamins play a huge role in nervous system health. 3. It's crucial to try natural and non-harmful remedies whenever possible.
Iron, Folic acid, Vitamin B, Magnesium…exercise daily; no smoking or caffeine; apple cidar vinegar and molasses mixed into a glass of water all have provided relief for people suffering from RLS.
And, of course the soap in the sheets, baking soda/water rubbed on the affected area and no sugar.
And, before we judge something as "placebo effect, " we should actually realize that the most powerful healing tool each of us has is our MIND…Our mind tells our bodies how to heal, what to let go of, etc.
That's not to say we don't need a bit of help from the body and a few outside sources here and there, but when we harness the mind, we harness the power of nature to heal ourselves!
Again, I think it is crucial to determine the underlying issue - is it a nutrient deficiency? A hormonal issue (some research says it is - for both men and women…men have hormones, too), stress? A combination?
Good luck - I've had success with vitamins and exercise and placing my legs against the wall/feet up at night for about 5-15 minutes while lying in bed. My mom has had success with Calm (a magnesium drink).
A Bar of Soap
In my personal opinion, I think if people are desperate for a solution and they finally have one that works it should be left alone. If you are supposedly part of one of these "support groups" then, to me, you should be more attentive to the support mission of the website than the undermining of people who want to get back to nature and organics to help with their remedies. If you do not agree with what people are actually saying works for them, and yes, outside influences do play a part in RLS whether you know it or not, then the old saying should be applied "if you have nothing nice to say, don't say anything at all." Especially if you feel you need to log into an ORGANIC supported site to preach about the overall effect of "modern medicine." What do we see nowadays? Every RX you take has added side effects, allergic reactions, etc. For millions upon thousands upon hundreds of years the human body has sustained itself through natural means. It is what our white blood cells and lymph nodes are hard at work doing. Natural remedies are easily absorbed by the body, compared to new medications that your body has to learn to adapt to, which does not always work. Each person is different as is their "genetic make-up." So, take the prescribed medication, then what? End up with a new side-effect if your body cannot process it correctly.Also, what is the long term medical evidence that attest to prolonged periods of these medications? I have had lymph node cancer in the past and I have found that switching to natural products, choosing a plant-based diet and taking care of myself have helped in the long run, compared to "quick fixes" have worked for me. I'm not saying that it will work for everyone but why not, at least, try it? Sugar and a lot of these "ingredients-in-food-that-we-can't-even-pronounce" have been a huge problem for all of the US. You see illnesses popping up everyday that we have not even heard of before. Think about this for a second. You're eating things that are not naturally broken down by the body, and you are surprised when you start contracting illnesses, diseases and ailments. I went to Texas A&M (Go Islanders!) to study anatomy, forensic science, entomology and microbiology and I am still surprised every day from my findings on how resilient the human body is. I know, as a person with some medical background (my mother also has a masters in Nursing and specializes in Oncology and works for Hospice), that I am the LAST person to give medical advice but what I just read in your comments warranted a rebuttal. You are getting second-hand information and, as you stated, your friend is a chemist, then he/she should have SOME idea that some of these Vitamins/Minerals (or lack thereof) do cause a problem and can actually make the illness worse. 'Iron, folate, and magnesium are thought to have the most direct impact on RLS symptoms. (Source: HealthLine, Can certain foods ease my RLS symptoms)'
I apologize for my abruptness in advance but I can't help but be a little unnerved by someone claiming to help people and they decide to take their frustration out on a community trying to work together for a common solution. No, it might not work for everyone but it's worth a shot. And I agree with Rick, maybe managing a support group(s) might not be for you.
ps. Sleep deprivation is an epidemic, but its what we put in our bodies for nourishment, hydration and ailments that cause the bigger problem. You'll find that research in those categories explain a lot. These are sources that are trusted and written by MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS that combat these problems on a day-to-day basis. Notice that SUGAR is listed in every one of these articles.
Which foods should I avoid if I have RLS?
- Sugary sodas
- Fried foods
- Foods and beverages that contain caffeine may stimulate your nerves and aggravate RLS. This includes:
- energy drinks
You should also limit or avoid fattening items, such as:
- fried foods
- processed foods
- foods high in sugar
A 2009 study showed people who are obese have an increased risk of RLS. This may be because obesity is linked to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and lower dopamine receptors. All of these conditions have the potential to cause RLS.
The significance of low iron in causing RLS is outlined in the segment on Causes of Restless Legs Syndrome.
Since the 1950s, it has been known that iron therapy, even without the presence of anemia has benefits for RLS symptoms. Studies have shown a strong relation between body iron stores as determined by serum ferritin and the severity of the RLS symptoms. A study has shown that in patients whose serum ferritin was < 75 µg/l, oral iron therapy (325 mg ferrous sulfate twice a day on an empty stomach) on average improved RLS symptom after 3 months.
A recent study has shown that giving oral iron more than once a day or at a dose greater than 85 mg per day does not necessary lead to a greater increase in absorbable iron. Oral iron equivalent to 65-85 mg of elemental iron will be best absorbed if given once a day. It should NOT be given with solid or liquid food/dietary supplements or with milk. It should be given on an empty stomach an hour before eating or two hours after eating along with 100-200 mg of vitamin C. An iron panel (early morning fasting blood to check iron, ferritin, TIBC, and percent iron saturation) should be done after three months to check on progress of the treatment. Oral iron should be stopped 2 days before the iron studies are done. The goal is to get the serum ferritin above 100 µg/l.
If the patient cannot tolerate the iron, or, if after three months there has been very little change in the iron stores, an iron infusion may be appropriate. Delivering iron directly into the blood by vein allows the iron to bypass the gastrointestinal tract, which can limit absorption of iron when iron is given orally. Several different formulations of iron are designed for intravenous treatment and are used for the treatment of anemia. Two formulations of iron dextran exist (Dexferrum and INFeD), with the low molecular weight (LMW) iron dextran (INFeD) demonstrating better safety profile than the older version of iron dextran, Dexferrum (Chertow et al. Nephrol Dial Transplant 2004:19, 1571). Other iron formulations currently available for intravenous use include: iron sucrose (Venofer®), iron gluconate (Ferrlicit®), ferumoxytol (Feraheme®) and ferric carboxymaltose (Ferinject®).
Two, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical studies using 1000 mg of ferric carboxymaltose versus placebo (subjects just received the solution with no iron in it), have shown that RLS patients who received the iron had significantly greater improvement in RLS symptoms (Allen et al. Sleep Medicine 2011: 12, 906; Cho et al. Sleep Medicine 2016:25,16). None of these patients had an anemia and some of the subjects has serum ferritin values of greater than 100 ug/l before the iron infusion. Approximately 35 percent of subjects who had received the iron treatment still remained off of all RLS medications even 6 months after the treatment. (Site Source: www.hopkinsmedicine.org)
A Bar of Soap
Plagued with severe Restless Leg Syndrome. Tried many things. Bar Irish spring soap. One between knees and some pieces in socks under toes. Haha was shocked and so excited when I got sleep and at how fast it went away! Thank you all for your input and sorry to all of those who haven't yet found something that works for you. Good luck to those of you. Everyone should at least try soap. Doesn't hurt and so glad now that I was desperate enough to try it. Had to be, when nothing else worked ya know. Who woulda thought Irish spring soap. I was happier than I had been in a long time. And so excited. Sleep deprivation from rls is no joke. And helps also knowing that people out there understand exactly what it feels like. Support leads to coping mechanisms, often sometimes solutions and often sometimes good friends who actually get it. Thanks guys! :)
A Bar of Soap
Two years ago I had quadruple bypass heart surgery and a defibrillator implant. Well recovered but in last six months my body, especially left side, throbs as soon as I get into bed. Became sleep deprived and would fall asleep during day. Went to Earth Clinic and saw that possibly what I was feeling was a form of RLS although I had been blaming my defibrillator. This is crazy but a week ago I put six leftover pieces of soap in a sock and placed it between the sheets. For a week now I no longer dread going to bed. The throbbibg has stopped. Thank you Earth Clinic and all the wonderful people who contribute. I am a health nut, take no meds and am 92 years old.
It's possible that there is some type of energy in the soap that transfers to the legs. Radiation was always present but it took Marie Curie to discover it. Bacteria were there before we had microscopes to see them. Just because we can't explain something, doesn't mean its effect isn't real.
My physical therapist talked to me about trying a weighted blanket which increases serotonin levels, calms the body and calms the nervous system and for many stops restless legs syndrome. I ordered a 20 lb weighted blanket ( the weight needed is based on a persons body weight) is basically a heavy blanket that goes over the bed. While we waited for our weighted blankets arrival. I added few more cotton blankets to the bed, and it worked. The restless leg disappeared and I began having much more deeper restful sleep. Once the weighted blanket arrived, it worked just as well. I hope this helps someone.
A Bar of Soap
Restless leg sufferer for 35 years. For the past five years I have had complete and total success with one or more of the following:
1. Bar of soap under the sheets in bed.
2. Rub the bar of soap on your legs, just gently stroke the bar on the legs a couple of times.
3. Aloe Vera on the legs. Sometimes this might take up to 3 applications.
A Bar of Soap
Hello From Lenexa Kansas!! I have been having a terrible time with this restless leg thing. I was so uncomfortable and it was already 2:30 am and so tired from not sleeping the night before for this same reason. I was beside myself and then I remembered this web site. I got out of bed and turned on the PC to look for it. I was relieved just knowing I found the site! LOL
I had read somewhere that it was a magnesium deficiency that caused this problem and even though the magnesium tabs would stop it the other side effect of the magnesium is profuse diarrhea. It (diarrhea) stops in about 24 hours when you realize that it's you who is causing the dilemma.
Anyway....I drank that baking soda and water thing and added apple cider vinegar and that didn't seem to work for very long. So here it is 4:30 am and I am frustrated beyond words. I go back to the PC....and thought about the soap testimonies for a moment. I had read the wonderful "yea's" for the soap. I thought it sounded to good to be true....but what the heck....I had nothing to lose but sleep....right?
I got up laughingly from my chair. Grabbed a fragment of a gold colored bar of Dial soap. I broke off a couple small pieces. (I didn't like the idea of soap lying in my bed with me) I put those pieces under my toes and put a light weight sock on. Did this to both feet.
I was soooo shocked that with in minutes it was as if nothing had ever happened and that whole thing was just an absurd nightmare! Boy O Boy!
I was a happy happy girl (age 58 - tee hee hee) because I could relax and just fall right off to sleep. I woke later in the morning and had to look to make sure I actually did this. LOL What a silly but powerful remedy!
Thank you Thank you Thank you for all of the wonderful testimonies!
To Night dancer and Citygirl,
First, Night dancer says there is no "cure" for RLS.
Well, there has been one for me. I had RLS for seven years; every night crawling irritation around knees especially. Just about drove me crazy and kept me from much sleep.
My short term cure... Take a third to a half teaspoon of baking soda mixed in purified water. Disolve and then apply a teaspoon topically to most affected area. With me it is right on my knee caps. Apply twice to three times within ten minutes. The irritation leaves almost immediately.
The long term problem for me and others I've discussed this with is harder... NO SUGAR. Sugar is the key to triggering RLS. I note Citygirl uses magnesium and there might be a relationship between magnesium neutralizing the effect of sugar.
But I have seen a DIRECT relationship between sugar consumption, especially after 3 pm, and RLS. I would guess it is a insulin issue that RLS suffers are seeing... perhaps a bit borline diabetic.
So the cure is: long term, eliminate sugar and if you can't do that then try the baking soda applied topically to get rid of the symptom of excess sugar.
Oh, and here's an interesting aside. Sometimes I will "feel" the RLS when I've had no sugar and will go back to what I ate for supper only to discover that... Sure enough... Sugar (like in pasta sauce) was a big part of the ingredients. So the RLS can actually inform me of hidden sugar intake.
Just remember: Sugar is the enemy.
A Bar of Soap
You might preach to your victims that there is no cure, to keep up business at your "support" groups, but you are simply wrong. As mentioned above, magnesium deficiency is often the culprit, along with B12 and selenium. Anyone with an ounce of nutritional and/or physiology knowledge would know this. If you possess neither of those, you shouldn't be managing 'support' groups.
A Bar of Soap
Bar of soap for RLS
I was searching around 2 or 4 am for something to help me.. the sensations were in my legs and my hands. I realized it was intense probably because I ate a bunch of brown sugar syrup earlier [craving] So won't do that again. Grabbed a bit of cashew as I was hungry...and grabbed a bar of soap. Incredible that it worked!! I noticed some on the thread put this to "placebo" affect which I find ridiculous. My whole body was going nuts and this put an end to it immediately. Had no idea if this would work or not but pretty grateful I have a go to now. Thanks Bar Soap!! [ It was just some bulk bar I get from the bulk store..maybe primrose or something which probably makes no difference at all.]
A Bar of Soap
Soap absolutely works, my husband has suffered with RLS for years, I read about soap and thought I'd give it a try without his knowledge to avoid the placebo effect. That was almost four weeks ago and he has not had an episode since. He filled his prescription for Requip on 7/8/16 and hasn't taken the first pill. He's NEVER gone this long, in fact he was taking a pill EVERY night. First I placed one bar of dial under the fitted sheet at the foot of the bed, the soap was YEARS old so after two days I added a fresh bar of Dove with it...they're both still there and working like magic. I was very skeptical and assumed it would NOT work but to my surprise it work even better than the Requip!!! So don't count this one out....it truly works and believe me I'm just as surprised as you are!!! I finally told him about it and he too was skeptical but it's still working so we're going with it!!!! There's a lot more to these old wives tales than we know or understand!!
First and foremost, I truly "appreciate and thank all of you that are responsible for having and providing this web site, which I have to confess that I became of aware of, within the past couple of days, and as a result of me having felt so overwhelmed, plagued by/with, and was unable to understand what had been happening to me, in terms of all of the discomfort, loss of sleep, irritation and other factors associated with the Lazy Leg Syndrome (rls) in my own case.
As a result, being unable to sleep/rest, feeling very irritated and more, I found myself in dire need of getting some sleep, although I had been/was, once again at this time, unable to sleep, which for me had been the case for numerous days and/or nights now.
Thus, for days, weeks and finally a couple of months now (...and yes, I'd gone to my doctor, including a couple others, explained my rls symptoms, even had some x-rays done, but to no avail), I found myself very sleep deprived, which for me, had really begun to take its toll in some ugly ways, as I became more short tempered with family members, other people, felt tired all the time and a host of other things that I knew had begun to make me a very unlikeable person to be around: I didn't even want to be around me at the time!!!
So, it was out of deep frustration, and feeling as if I would, any day or time now, come to a breaking point/brink of having losing it, because of my lack of being able to get some real rest and sleep during the night, which had begun to, I believe, bother me from an emotional, mental and physical stand point. I needed sleep!!!
Anyway, once again I'd given up my efforts to try and rest/sleep on a particular night, despite the fact that I had gone to bed early, around 8:30 p.m., and according to the clock in my bedroom, the time was already 3:30 a.m.
By the way, on that night, like many others, all I had done while in my bed, for the most part, was toss and turn along with experiencing lots of discomfort, pain, groaning and moaning that was directly associated with the rls that felt as if it was going to never stop, but would, instead continue to get worse.
So, I was up again, sitting at the computer and surfing the web trying my best to not disturb others of my family members, all of whom appeared to, during this time, be into a deep, restful and peaceful sleep, unlike myself.
But, at last I found myself actually smiling while reading your web page, and having come upon a portion related to the ailment of, as well as some of the remedies for rls. Before long I became very interested in all of the information I had read about, as well as absorbed, concerning rls and the use of baking soda to help cure and/or remedy some of the discomfort associated with rls. True, I was extremely non-trusting and found myself unable to believe that most, if any of the remedies/things mentioned on the page I found myself reading would help my rls in any way at all.
Still, there was information dated 08/07/07 from Pat who said he/she resides in Frederiksburg, Virginia, and that he/she suffered with rls and had, as a result, used 1/4 tsp of baking soda in a cup of water, and within 20 minutes her/his legs became calm and he/she was able to sleep!
I do not know if I will ever really know just what made me believe that this same thing, once I got me some baking soda and took it, as described by Pat, that I too would feel some relief, and might actually experience the joy of getting some rest and sleep, but I did believe what Pat had been kind enough to share with me and other readers of that information on your web page, and a result, that very night I found a brand new box of baking soda (I often buy baking soda to use for its many uses, and had recently purchased at least three boxes of it), took some of it, although reluctantly; but actually fell into a deep and restful sleep for the first time in a very long while.
"Thank you so much Pat." I really am grateful to you for helping me out in the matter of the use of baking soda to help ease and/or cure symptoms of rls. You have certainly won my approval, and I am so grateful to you, I might even vote for you as the new President for the USA in the up and coming Presidential election.
Sincerely, Thank you, again, and ever so much for helping me get some relief and sleep in dealing with my episodes of rls by using the 1/4 tsp of baking soda remedy, as described by you in your letter to this web site.
Apple Cider Vinegar
I'm a very active person and would get restless legs regularly or, when doing yoga intensely, restless arms. Rubbing apple cider vinegar worked like magic for me, so I would keep it by the bed. It would immediately stop the restlessness. After changing jobs and being on my feet all day I started getting the restless legs coming down from my lower back. This time a hot water bottle on my lower back did the trick for a while, also rubbing Amol (a rubbing solution made in Poland), but I had days when these remedies didn't work.
So I desperately searched Earth Clinic (which I always do when in need for remedies) and found baking soda. AND THAT DID THE TRICK THIS TIME!
Thank you guys and thank you so much Earth Clinic for bringing so much relief, clarity, and sanity into our stressful and demanding lives.
EC: Hi, can you please tell us how you took the baking soda? Thanks!
I've had restless legs for years and I've tried all the remedies mentioned here in EC. Many of them worked for a while and then stopped so I'd switch to another only to experience the same disappointment. Quite by accident I learned that eliminating sugar from my diet completely eliminated those darned restless legs. And by sugar I mean “blatant” sugar! I'm talking about stuff like cake, pie, cookies, syrups, candy, and anything that is loaded with it. I don't obsess over it or scrutinize every label, but so far this approach is working like magic. I hope this helps someone.
Mustard for Restless Legs
Eat a spoonful of mustard before bed! It's working for me so far! It's like a miracle cure!
I have had RLS for 30+ years. The following have worked for me, and my RLS will recur without one of these very convenient and inexpensive "cures":
1. Bar of soap in the bed by my legs...sometimes 2 bars. Brand doesn't seem to matter.
2. Massage calves with aloe vera or any type of body lotion(I prefer coconut oil). For some reason, icy hot doesn't work. Also massage small amount of lotion into lower back.
3. Carbonyl iron.
A Bar of Soap
I just read your message about the soap n saw how it bothers him & me massaging n cooling his feet. So I put a new bar of Irish spring n now it's been about 10 mins he is not moving anymore! Thank you on soap idea
A Bar of Soap
I have had Restless Leg Syndrome for about 50 years and went to hosp for surg just lately. Guess what I needed IV Magnesium.
I have had rls since my first pregnancy a lot of years ago. It is definitely not funny and has kept me awake and miserable for over 50 years. I am trying the baking soda now and will try other non drugs also. Say a prayer!
A Bar of Soap
I suffered with RLS for 12 years, for many of them I googled remedies and found that soap did work - well recently I googled and I found that not enough magnesium was the culprit! Well I have been eating foods and making shakes with all fresh veggies and fruit, nuts, seeds with high magnesium levels and this has CURED the problem. Good luck
A Bar of Soap
Have you tried magnesium for your rls and restless arms?
Another great remedy for it is blackstrap molasses - 1 Tablespoon in the evening. I think it has the potential to help both of your issues.
~Mama to Many~
A Bar of Soap
New to Restless Leg Syndrome, but this morning I was so in need of relief. I came across this site. Grabbed a bar of ivory soap still in wrapper, placed between knees and on seconds the pain, tingling went from my thighs to my knees. It stayed there but it wasn't as bad as my full leg pain. I was asleep in minutes of doing this. I'm amazed! A bar of soap stood between me and some sleep, usually my husband needs the soap. lol, blessed it be.
The best thing I have found for my RLS (have had it for over 30 years) is a glass of water with baking soda at night. Works 9/10 times and has saved my sanity. I also find that any kind of antihistamine or nyquil or tylenolPM type meds make my legs crazy.
RLS should not be confused with "Period Limb Movement Disorder"…
'RLS' vs. 'Period Limb Movement Disorder'…
- In RLS, there are NO involuntary movements/spasms. RLS involves uncomfortable sensations in the legs and an urge to move the limbs… all movement with RLS is voluntary.
- In PLMD, there are involuntary spasms, twitching and involuntary movements.
They are two completely different conditions…
- RLS is a nerve condition.
- PLMD is a muscle condition.
- Opiates, like morphine, help RLS but does not help PLMD.
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, like Diclofenac, help PLMD but do not help RLS.