Restless leg syndrome or Willis-Ekbom Disease is a common sleeping disorder. About 10% of the American population has restless leg syndrome according to the National Sleep Foundation. The neurological disorder results in sleepless nights because people who have it get an overwhelming urge to flex their legs, and these involuntary movements are more pronounced at night. Although the exact cause of it is not clear, it is genetic. It is possible to keep the symptoms of restless leg syndrome under control to allow you to enjoy a decent night’s sleep. Home remedies for restless leg syndrome are useful because they don’t pose significant risks in terms of side effects, and if you are allergic to one, there are a dozen more to try.
These simple home remedies for restless leg syndrome will help you get some rest in no time!
This perennial herb found in North America has been used in traditional medicine as a relaxant. Its ability to ease muscle tension is one reason it makes one of the top restless leg syndrome home remedies. It is a powerful antispasmodic, and that provides relief from the involuntary flexing of the legs. Skullcap also contains sedative properties, which help with your sleeplessness and anxiety as well.
- Boil a cup of water.
- Add a teaspoon of dried skullcap.
- Sieve the tea and drink half an hour before bedtime.
- Don’t drink more than 3 cups of American skullcap tea in a day.
*Pregnant women and young girls should not use American Skullcap because it induces menstruation!
Another option for a restless leg syndrome home remedy is chamomile. The herb from the daisy family is a renowned sedative that will make your nights more peaceful. Chamomile has excellent relaxant properties, which helps to reduce anxiety in someone suffering from restless leg syndrome. Stress can worsen the effects of the condition, and chamomile tea is great at calming the nerves just before sleep.
- Boil a cup of water.
- Pour in a teaspoon of dried chamomile.
- Give it 10 minutes to steep
- Strain the tea.
- Add honey or lemon juice for flavor.
- Drink 2 times a day.
Valerian is popular for its sedative characteristics, hence its use as one of the home remedies for restless leg syndrome. The plant works on the central nervous system to calm down the muscles. Drinking valerian tea promotes sleep in an individual with restless leg syndrome, which reduces cases of daytime sleepiness, a common symptom of the condition.
- Boil a cup of water.
- Add valerian root.
- Wait 10 minutes for your tea to steep.
- Strain the tea.
- Drink before bed to induce sleep.
*Don’t mix valerian with other sedatives or alcohol!
4. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil has powerful healing effects, including calming the nerves, and that is why it is used as a restless leg syndrome home remedy. Rubbing coconut oil relaxes the muscles and minimizes the involuntary flexing of the legs at night. Coconut oil also facilitates blood circulation, which allows the lower extremities to receive sufficient supply while you sleep.
- Warm a little coconut oil.
- Apply the oil on your legs and feet.
- Massage for 2 minutes for maximum absorption.
- Repeat daily before bedtime.
5. Apple Cider Vinegar
Another kitchen ingredient that makes one of the best restless leg syndrome home remedies is apple cider vinegar because of the presence of acetic acid. Apple cider vinegar balances the pH levels in the leg muscles, which reduces flexing. It is also excellent at facilitating the absorption of nutrients in the body, thus improving the health of your leg muscles. Also, the essential minerals like calcium and potassium that are found in apple cider vinegar don’t hurt.
- Warm a cup of water.
- Pour in a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar and mix thoroughly.
- Drink this mixture half an hour before bedtime.
- Get the treatment once a day.
- Rub raw apple cider vinegar on your legs before going to bed.
6. Lavender Oil
Another essential oil that is excellent for promoting sleep is lavender oil. The plant is lauded for its calming effects, which is why it is used for aromatherapy to treat insomnia. Lavender makes one of the top home remedies for restless leg syndrome because it has relaxant qualities as well. Besides calming jittery muscles, it reduces anxiety, consequently the effects of restless leg syndrome.
- Warm the lavender oil.
- Rub on your feet and massage gently before bed.
- Adding sweet orange oil increases its effectiveness.
- Take a lavender bath to relax your leg muscles.
- Add several drops of lavender oil into your warm bath.
- Soak in it for 10-20 minutes.
- Once a day is enough to manage the condition.
7. Black Strap Molasses
One theory of the restless leg syndrome is that an iron deficiency can agitate the condition because the mineral is responsible for transporting blood. It is why sleep specialists recommend an increased iron intake for individuals with restless leg syndrome. Blackstrap molasses contain iron in large supply, hence its efficiency as one of the home remedies for restless leg syndrome. It also contains potassium, phosphorous, and calcium among other minerals, which improve muscle health.
- Add a tablespoon of blackstrap molasses to a cup of water.
- Stir properly to get a homogenous mixture.
- Drink the solution 30 minutes before sleeping.
- You can mix in a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to the solution for maximum effect.
8. Epsom Salt
Soaking in an Epsom salt bath is one of the top home remedies for restless leg syndrome. Epsom salts contain plenty of magnesium, which is very effective in relaxing tired muscles. Exhaustion can aggravate restless leg syndrome, making it difficult to sleep. Epsom salts are also helpful in reducing inflammation of the muscles, therefore it is also used as a home remedy for leg cramps.
- Draw a warm bath.
- Add a cup of Epsom salt.
- Soak in the tub for 30 minutes.
- Take the treatment once every day to calm your muscles.
9. Calf Stretches
Certain exercises can help reduce the effects of restless leg syndrome, making it easier to get some rest. The involuntary flexing of the leg muscles can happen due to poor fitness, especially if you sit all day. A few works out just before bed will stretch the tendons and muscles, thereby helping them breathe and relax. They also help with blood circulation to your legs.
- Stretch out your arms and place your palms against a wall while keeping your elbows straight.
- Bend the right knee slightly then move the left leg a few feet back, with the heel flat on the floor.
- Hold your right knee in an elevated position for 20 seconds.
- Put it down and repeat the process with your left knee.
- Alternate the leg for 15-20 minutes.
The analgesic property of peppermint is one reason it is one of the best home remedies for restless leg syndrome. These nightly muscle spasms can be painful, and peppermint has the power to numb pain. The herb is also excellent at soothing the nerves, which comes in handy when trying to manage this syndrome. Peppermint possesses antispasmodic effects as well, meaning it reduces the involuntary movement of your legs at night.
- Boil a cup of water to make tea.
- Add a handful of peppermint leaves either dry or fresh.
- Stop the water and leave for 5 minutes to steep.
- Drink the tea before sleeping.
- Blend 2 drops of peppermint oil with 4 drops of rosemary oil, 4 teaspoons of carrier oil, and 4 drops black spruce essential oil for leg massages.
- Apply and rub your leg in circular motion.
- Add 4 drops of peppermint oil to 2 cups of cold water for a cold compress.
- Add also 4 drops of yarrow essential oil and stir vigorously.
- Dip a clean towel into the solution.
- Wrap the towel around the affected regions.
11. Butcher’s Broom
If Butcher’s Broom is available to you, use it to make one of the best home remedies for restless leg syndrome. The herb from the lily family is excellent at improving blood circulation. It contains a phytochemical called ruscogenin, which inhibits the production of elasticin, thus stabilizing the blood vessels. The Mediterranean herb is helpful in relieving tension, cramping, and numbness in the legs.
- Boil a cup of water.
- Add a spoon of butcher’s broom powder.
- Let the tea boil for 5 minutes.
- Remove from flame and sieve.
- Let it cool then drink.
- 2-3 cups a day should provide relief.
12. Parsley Tea
Drinking parsley tea can offer a welcome relief when suffering from restless leg syndrome. The herb has a rich content of iron, and that makes it useful in boosting blood circulation. An iron deficiency tends to aggravate the symptoms of restless leg syndrome. Besides, it contains a multitude of other minerals including manganese, potassium, and magnesium all of which improve your muscle health. Parsley is also a mild anesthetic, which helps relax your leg muscles and reduce involuntary movements.
- Put a handful of parsley leaves in a mug.
- Boil a cup of water then pour it on the leaves.
- Cover then leave it to steep for 5 minutes.
- Strain the tea.
- Add a few drops of lemon juice or honey to flavor.
- Drink tea before bedtime.
13. Hot and Cold Therapy
Both low and high temperatures can do wonders for your restless leg syndrome. A cold or hot compress, or foot soaks are some of the simplest home remedies for restless leg syndrome. Hot and cold can help reduce the inflammation in the muscles, which may be causing the bedtime spasms. Heat also promotes blood circulation, thus enabling your legs to rest better at night. Cold temperatures are effective in numbing the muscles, which gives you relief from the pain of the syndrome.
- Get two buckets, one with cold and the other with hot water for hot and cold foot soaks.
- Place your feet for 3 minutes in the bucket of hot water first.
- Then put them in the cold water for a minute.
- Repeat the process 2-3 times for relief.
Some individuals suffer from restless leg syndrome without even knowing it. The lack of sleep and involuntary muscle twitching can make life very frustrating. It can impact your emotional and mental health due to sleep deprivation. After being diagnosed with restless leg syndrome, you can look for suitable natural treatments to make life bearable. Home remedies for restless leg syndrome range wildly from drinking herbal tea to leg exercises. Because these natural remedies don’t pose significant health threats, you can combine several. Also, it is best to talk to a sleep specialist for a proper diagnosis and recommendations on the best natural treatments.