Coping and support

By Mayo Clinic Staff

RLS is generally a lifelong condition. Living with RLS involves developing coping strategies that work for you. The Restless Legs Syndrome Foundation recommends these approaches:

  • Tell others about your condition. Sharing information about RLS will help your family members, friends and co-workers better understand when they see you pacing the halls, standing at the back of the theater, or walking to the water cooler many times throughout the day.
  • Don't resist your need for movement. If you attempt to suppress the urge to move, you may find that your symptoms only get worse. Get out of bed. Find an activity that's distracting. Stop frequently when traveling.
  • Keep a sleep diary. Keep track of the medications and strategies that help or hinder your battle with RLS, and share this information with your doctor.
  • Adapt your work space for standing. You may be more comfortable if you elevate your desktop or bookstand to a height that will allow you to stand while you work or read.
  • Stretch and massage. Begin and end your day with stretching exercises or gentle massage.
  • Seek help. Support groups bring together family members and people with RLS. By participating in a group, your insights not only can help you but also may help someone else.
Jan. 19, 2012

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