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Cause of Restless Legs Syndrome

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and stroke categorizes restless legs syndrome as a sleep disorder. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, the condition is apparent in at least one in 10 people. Symptoms such as unpleasant leg sensations and the inability to sleep because of night occurrences characterize the disorder. The following information discusses the possible causes of the ailment and the best treatment for restless legs syndrome.  

Common Symptoms of Restless Legs Syndrome

It may be hard to tell when you're suffering from RLS at first because the symptoms can be similar to and overlap with other conditions. One symptom that separates RLS from other conditions is that the legs seem to move uncontrollably. This problem usually worsens at night and can cause difficulty staying asleep or getting to sleep. The lack of sleep can cause additional ailments and disturbances. 

Throbbing sensations and uncontrollable leg jerking can occur with RLS. Cramping, tingling, burning sensations, and itching are common complaints sufferers notate as well. 

The Main Causes of Restless Legs Syndrome

RLS can be initiated by a variety of conditions, dispositions, and situations. These are some of the most common causes:


Sometimes, nothing other than family history and genetics can explain a sudden case of RLS. Many sufferers who experience it also have family members who have dealt with it at least once in their lives. 

Iron-Deficiency Anemia

Iron-deficiency anemia can cause a variety of neurological issues, with RLS being one of them. The condition can sometimes be resolved with iron supplementation and an improved diet if the cause of the deficiency is nutritional. Iron-deficiency anemia that comes from other conditions may require more extensive treatment plans. 

Peripheral Neuropathy

Peripheral neuropathy tends to affect the hands and feet but can also include legs and other bodily systems when severe. Additionally, the condition is commonly seen in individuals with diabetes.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition that causes pain and inflammation in various joints and can cause a secondary RLS case. 

Sjögren syndrome

Sjögren syndrome is another autoimmune condition that causes symptoms such as a dry mouth or eyes, persistent cough, relentless fatigue, and joint pain. It can very well cross over into the restless legs syndrome realm during a sufferer's episode. 

Brain Disorders

RLS can happen when an individual has damaged dopamine receptors due to a brain injury or illness. Treatment for the condition may include taking medication to help regulate the chemical balance. 


RLS is common in about 15 percent of pregnant women. It most frequently happens to women in their second and third trimesters as the baby's movements put pressure on the bottom sections of the body. Experts also say that pregnancy-related RLS may have something to do with low iron levels.  


The shifting hormone levels that occur in hypothyroidism patients commonly cause the symptoms. Raising thyroxine levels with the help of a seasoned specialist can resolve the problem.  

Substance Withdrawal

Medication, drug, and alcohol withdrawal can be the leading cause of RLS in some individuals. The problem usually occurs in the beginning stages and subsides after the individual's body normalizes. 

Many other conditions can cause RLS as a secondary issue. Visiting an experienced specialist who can determine the root cause is the first step toward recovery. 

The Best Treatment for Restless Leg Syndrome

The best treatment for restless legs syndrome depends on its cause. Sometimes, lifestyle changes can resolve mild cases of it. Nutritional improvements, such as increased hydration and iron supplementation, can cure diet-related conditions. Some medical specialists might recommend certain medications for treating the condition.

Muscle relaxers or sedatives could help to calm the system down. Specialists may also prescribe antidepressants to alter the brain chemicals. Calcium channel regulators can help in some cases, and opioids may assist with pain. Alternatively, physical therapy can be a helpful remedy. The first step is to contact a medical specialist who can diagnose the problem correctly and prescribe the most suitable treatment for the condition. You will find the best treatment for restless legs syndrome using that method. 

Where To Get Help for RLS and Other Sleep Disorders

The good news is that you can start your recovery for RLS by scheduling an appointment with a specialist. ENT Utah provides assistance with all manner of sleep disorders, including RLS-related lack of sleep. The provider also issues treatment for head and neck cancer, thyroid problems, and tinnitus. You can begin your recovery journey and seek peace of mind by scheduling a meeting with an advanced specialist today. You'll rest well knowing that you put your trust in a reliable provider for restless legs syndrome treatment.