What is RLS?

What is RLS?

Willis-Ekbom Disease, also known as Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS), is a neurological disorder characterized by the irresistible urge to move one’s body to stop uncomfortable sensations. It is estimated that between 7-10% of the UK population is living with RLS.

It most commonly affects the legs, but can also affect other parts of the body, including the arms and torso. The unpleasant sensations that accompany RLS may be described as creeping, tugging, or pulling. Symptoms most often occur in the evening, which may severely disrupt sleep and impair quality of life.

RLS is most frequently diagnosed in middle-aged individuals, but the disease can affect people of all ages, even children. It is a hereditary disease in about 50% of affected individuals, a condition referred to as primary RLS. In others, RLS appears as the result of another condition, which is referred to as secondary RLS.

Currently there is no cure for either form of RLS, but there are treatment options available to manage symptoms.

Learn how restiffic can treat your RLS symptoms.

Do I have RLS?

The symptoms of Restless Legs Syndrome, also known as Willis-Ekbom Disease, are often difficult to put into words, as each person’s experience is different. The primary symptom associated with RLS is an overwhelming, uncontrollable urge to move the legs when they are at rest.

If you answer “yes” to any of the following questions, you may have RLS and should speak with your health care professional about your symptoms.

- When you sit or lie down, do you have a strong desire to move your legs?
- Does the desire to move your legs feel impossible to resist?
- Would you describe the sensations in your legs as: unpleasant, creepy-crawly, itchy, tugging, itchy, or creeping?
- Does your need to move your legs often occur when you are resting or sitting?
- Does moving your legs help soothe or calm your symptoms?
- Are your symptoms worse in the evening or night than during the day, or only occur in the evening or night?
- Do you ever have involuntary leg movements while you are awake?
- Do any of your family members have similar symptoms?
- Has a discussion with your health care professional not revealed any other physical cause for your discomfort (i.e. Leg cramps, arthritis, leg swelling)?

Many patients suffering from RLS symptoms find it helpful to keep a journal to record their symptoms and daily habits that may be contributing to or improving their RLS symptoms. We have created a symptom journal that may be helpful in evaluating your RLS symptoms and in discussions with your healthcare provider. Download the RLS symptom journal here.

Do I have RLS?
RLS treatment options

RLS treatment options

restiffic is a revolutionary product for the treatment of Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS). It is a completely drug-free foot wrap that exerts a soothing topical pressure to targeted muscles in the foot to relax the uncontrollable impulses occurring in the legs. Before restiffic, there existed three primary treatment options for managing RLS: pharmaceutical productss, homeopathic remedies, and lifestyle choices.

Pharmaceutical products are a common treatment method for RLS. Dopamine agonists, dopaminergic agents, opiates, central nervous system depressants, and anticonvulsants are different families of frequently prescribed drugs to manage RLS symptoms. These pharmaceuticals are often accompanied by long lists of negative side effects, including nausea, vomiting, hallucinations, daytime sleepiness, addiction, and more.

With pharmaceutical products, there is also the risk of augmentation. Augmentation occurs when a dopaminergic agent or other pharmaceutical product relieves symptoms at night, but eventually symptoms begin to develop earlier in the day and spread from the legs to the rest of the body, such as to the arms and trunk. When experiencing augmentation, increasing the dosage usually worsens symptoms. Other common side effects associated with pharmaceutical treatment for RLS include the rebound effect (which is the re-emergence of symptoms that were either absent or controlled while taking a medication, but reappear when medication is reduced or discontinued), addiction or dependency on medication, and the need to increase the dosage of medication.

Homeopathic or herbal remedies are another form of treatment for RLS. These medicines are available without prescription and can be purchased over the counter or on the internet. However, as with pharmaceutical productss, homeopathic remedies may be accompanied by negative side effects.

Lifestyle choices, such as limiting alcohol, nicotine, and caffeine may be recommended for treating RLS. Maintaining a healthy diet and ensuring that that your diet has adequate levels of iron may also be suggested. Presently, there is no single lifestyle choice that has been shown to markedly reduce symptoms of RLS.

Questions, comments? Just need to get in touch?

Contact us or call 01432 373500