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Treatment for RLS

There is no cure for RLS. However, there may be an underlying disease or condition, such as peripheral neuropathy or diabetes, causing it. Treating the underlying disease can relieve many of the symptoms of restless legs syndrome.
For people who have RLS and who do not have an underlying disease or condition, treatment will focus on symptom relief. For those with mild to moderate symptoms, lifestyle changes are often suggested, including:
  • Reducing or stopping the use of caffeine, alcohol, and tobacco products
  • Taking supplements to increase iron, folate, and magnesium in the body
  • Developing and keeping a regular sleep schedule
  • Getting moderate exercise
  • Taking hot or cold baths, rubbing or massaging the legs or other affected body parts, or using a heating pad or ice pack.
Healthcare providers may prescribe medication for symptom relief, which can include:
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Dopaminergic agents
  • Opioids
  • Antiseizure medication.
(Click Treatment for Restless Legs Syndrome for more information.)

The Impact of RLS

Left untreated, RLS can cause exhaustion and daytime fatigue. Many people with the condition report that their job, personal relations, and activities of daily living are strongly affected as a result of their exhaustion.

The Prognosis for RLS

RLS is generally a lifelong condition for which there is no cure. Current treatments can decrease symptoms and increase periods of restful sleep. In addition, some people have remissions, which are periods in which their symptoms decrease or disappear for days, weeks, or months, although symptoms usually reappear. A diagnosis of RLS does not indicate the beginning of any other neurological disease.
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Information About RLS

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