Restless Leg Syndrome ....
and how Massage Therapy helps!

Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) is a condition which makes you feel as if you need to constantly move your legs in order to prevent unusual sensations like itching, tingling, or crawling feelings.

It affects millions of people at some point in their lives and is often frustrating and embarrassing. Sensations can make it hard to sit, stand, or even lay for long periods of time.

It can inhibit or disrupt sleep, or cause excessive movement during sleep. Spouses make complain of "kicking" actions during bedtime.

Causes of Restless Leg Syndrome

The cause of this disorder is really unknown, however, some studies show that the following could contribute:

  • Using certain medications like anti-histamines
  • Kidney disease
  • Iron Deficiency
  • Peripheral Neuropathy
  • Pregnancy
  • Obesity
  • Smoking
  • Some Anti-depressants
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Caffeine

Although this disorder typically affects middle aged individuals, it also runs in families.

Extensive blood work is often ordered to detect kidney problems or iron deficiency.


Many times, physicians will search for an underlying illness which may be causing the disorder. Medications may be prescribed.

Elimination of alcohol, cigarettes and caffeine will often decrease symptoms. Getting a full nights sleep and exercise will also help decrease episodes of RLS.

Leg massage will help to increase blood circulation in the legs as well as increase oxygen and nutrient flow, which will also decrease symptoms.

The more you can get a massage, the better. Because massage increases circulation, it can decrease RLS symptoms. However, even if you can only get one massage per month, even just 30 minutes, that will help.

This DVD, Coping with Restless Leg  teaches easy stretches and exercises that you can easily do at home to help the symptoms. It also comes in an educational format for teaching how to work with patients in a clinical setting, great for massage school or clinical practice.

You can also use a good leg massager. Professional leg massage machines are great for your legs, feet, hips, back, and it can be used on your hands and arms. Most have different massage settings, each used for different physical problems.

Other Resources

Read more about RLS at Sleep Passport

Restless leg syndrome can not only prevent you from getting a good night's sleep, but it may also prevent you from being effective at your work, and leg massage, as well as stretches can definitely help.

Go back to Massage Education Guide Homepage

Go back to Massage Therapy Benefits for Pain Syndromes from Restless Leg Syndrome 

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