Getting moderate, regular exercise may relieve symptoms of restless leg syndrome (RLS), but overdoing it or working out too late in the day may intensify symptoms. Please note that RLS symptoms get worse at night, so it's important that the exercises are well moderated. With RLS, stretching exercises are helpful. Any gentle stretching in the legs is beneficial. Having said that, this program can help relieve the symptoms but not the root cause. It is still recommended that you see a doctor for some physical and a neurological exam. Blood tests should also be done, particularly for iron deficiency, to rule out other possible causes for your symptoms. Sometimes, treating an underlying condition, such as iron deficiency, greatly relieves symptoms of restless legs syndrome.
In order for you to manage this condition properly, you can follow these tips:
- Try baths and massages. Soaking in a warm bath and massaging your legs can relax your muscles.
- Apply warm or cool packs. Use of heat or cold, or alternating use of the two, may lessen your limb sensations.
- Establish good sleep hygiene. Fatigue tends to worsen symptoms of RLS/WED, so it's important that you practice good sleep hygiene. Ideally, have a cool, quiet, comfortable sleeping environment; go to bed and rise at the same time daily; and get adequate sleep.
- Avoid caffeine. Sometimes cutting back on caffeine may help restless legs. Try to avoid caffeine-containing products, including chocolate and caffeinated beverages, such as coffee, tea and soft drinks, for a few weeks to see if this helps.
- Stretch and massage. Begin and end your day with stretching exercises or gentle massage.