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Restless legs

Lifestyle modifications

PHYSICAL ACTIVITY

  • Moderate regular exercise (1)

  • For symptomatic relief – walking, bicycling, soaking the affected limbs, and leg massage, including pneumatic compression (1)


NUTRITION

  • In some cases nicotine, caffeine and alcohol increase the symptoms. If these substances increase symptoms of RLS recommend to avoid/minimize the intake (1, 2).

  • Iron: Iron deficiency may cause restless legs syndrome. Start iron supplementation if ferritin is below 75mcg/l. Vitamin C increases iron absorption (2).

  • Vitamin D: Significant association between vitamin D levels and restless legs syndrome. Normalize vitamin D levels if deficiency is present (3).

  • Obesity: There is increased risk of restless legs syndrome among obese individuals (4)


SLEEP

  • Reduced sleep may aggravate symptoms of RLS in many patients. Thus, improving sleep may possibly reduce symptoms of RLS (2).


OTHER

  • Mental alerting activities, such as working on a computer or doing crossword puzzles, at times of rest or boredom (2).

  • Stretching, warm baths before bedtime (1).

References

Resources

Evidence Pyramid

Figure: Evidence pyramid

EXPLANATION TO EVIDENCE PRESENTATION

Recommendations based on guidelines and evidence based Clinical Decision Systems are written in BOLD

Recommendations based on meta analysis or systematic reviews are written in BOLD and CURSIVE

Recommendations based on randomized controlled trials are written in plain font

Recommendations based on observational / cohort studies are written in CURSIVE

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