Pregnant and Having Restless Leg Syndrome

Updated on March 26, 2009
A.H. asks from Scotch Plains, NJ
17 answers

My sister in law is crazed at night with restless leg syndrome. She is pregnant with her second baby.. due in July. She has never had this problem before.. but she says her legs are driving her crazy.. she can't sleep.. anyone out there know any natural remedies.. thanks!!!

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S.H.

answers from Albany on

OMG that happened to me with my first...it was awful!!! I got this mommy sleepy time tea. I think it was organic. It helped...

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A.T.

answers from New York on

I had this too when pregnant. Drink lots of tonic water, which has quinine in it...that is the remedy.

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R.J.

answers from Albany on

I had the same thing when I was pregnant for both my kids. I asked the doctor and he said to take magnesium. I took one supplement a day and it totally worked! He also said that he is not sure why some docs say to take calcium because that is for your bones and magnesium is for your muscles (he used technical terms, but I believe that was the jist of it). Both my kids were completely healthy, no problems. I also told 2 friends and my sister about the magnesium and they took it too and it worked great for them too. Good luck!

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C.M.

answers from New York on

I had RLS before I got pregnant, but not as regular as when I was pregnant. It was terrible when I was pregnant. As mentioned, I don't think there is anything you can do, herbal or otherwise, to alleviate it. I wound up going to bed very early - I just couldn't sit in the couch or anywhere and the later I waited to go to bed, the worse it would get and I couldn't fall asleep. My suggestionn is to ask you SIL if she is able to just go to bed at like 8, she might have an easier time falling asleep and staying asleep. It was miserable to have that be the only way to feel better, but I got plenty of rest and it worked for me. Good Luck!

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H.G.

answers from New York on

There are no medicines she can take while pregnant, unfortunately. I had the same problem, and no natural remedies helped either. It's different than other ailments, like leg cramps, because it's not related to a vitamin or mineral deficiency. Mine got a little better during my third trimester, strangely enough.

Tell her to hang in there! Pregnancy is not for the faint of heart...

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A.J.

answers from Albany on

Bananas before bed, a foot & leg massage, and a pillow between the legs. And ask the doc for other ways to help. It is a horrible thing!

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A.C.

answers from New York on

She might need to load up on the calcium--possibly by drinking an Ensure with extra calcium at bedtime or chewing Tums.

While working for a doctor's office I was shown an article written about how putting a bar of soap under the bed sheet at night helps to relieve leg cramps and/or jumping legs at night. GOOGLE it--you'll see people who swear by it. :)

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M.G.

answers from New York on

I had a mild case of it and was told to try not to eat that many carbs in the evening -- and I *HAD* -- I was eating lots of rice and pasta for dinner, so I didn't eliminate carbs, I just ate the carbs I wanted for lunch and not for dinner, that helped me! There has been some research on this I believe.

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G.T.

answers from Rochester on

Although I never had it while I was pregnant, I do now (getting older is the pits!). The doctor recommended I eat a banana about an hour before going to bed. It really does help. It's the potassium in the bananas that helps.

BTW Since I don't really like bananas that much I just take a potassium pill each day. It works just as well and I can really tell the difference if I forget to take the pill!

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S.S.

answers from New York on

I had RLS while I was pregnant too. I tried everything to relieve the symptoms. The pillow between my legs, not eating 4 hours before bedtime. Lowering my sugar intake. A couple of times I had it while driving home from work and had to pull over because it felt like my legs were going to jump off my body!! It is really a strange felling, but unfortunatly nothing I tried really worked.

Just make sure she is hydrated, being dehyrated made the symptoms worse. Also, you can tell her when she starts to feel it, she should try and walk around a bit, pacing seemed to satisfy the need to move. Sorry I couldn't be more helpful, tell her good luck.

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R.C.

answers from New York on

exercising.....meditating.....soaking in an epson salt bath which is very relaxing.....Hypnoses....acupuncture

L.B.

answers from Boston on

Hi A.,

I went to a chiropractor when I had restless leg syndrome. It really worked well. If you live in the Woodbridge, CT area I can give you the name of a good one.

Sarah

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M.P.

answers from New York on

I know I am late in responding, but hopefully this will help. I suffered from this terribly when I was pregnant for the second time w/ my twins. I was litteraly going insane from not being able to sleep. I tried just about everything. I tried calcium supplements, but I later found out that it works for leg cramps. After some research I read that restless leg syndrome can be caused by anemia. I started taking iron supplements and after about the second day, I noticed a huge difference. As long as I took my supplement every day, the restless legs went away completely. If I skipped a day or two, I noticed right away that it would come back. I hope this works as well for your SIL as it did for me. I know how horribly she feels! Good luck and congratulations to her on the upcoming new addition! ~M.

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D.

answers from New York on

You have to remember, that natural medications are still medications and not all of them can be taken during pregnancy. First, herbs and such are not regulated by the FDA and there is no monitoring system to make sure that herbs are really what they say they are. Second, there are MANY herbs that can cause tons of complications during your pregnancy all the way up to causing miscarriage. Third, she shouldn't be taking any medication, herbal or not, during her pregnancy without discussing it with her doc. I was very careful with the herbs I took during my pregnancies, all the way down to the teas I drank. She needs to talk to her docs about this.

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M.F.

answers from New York on

I had the same thing while pregnant. I found that while I did pilates it helped me because my back muscles were remaining in shape. With my RLS it related straight back to how strong my core and back was. That might help...

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G.W.

answers from New York on

Hi A.,

Sorry to hear about your sister in law. I can recommend a great natural remedy-Calcium but it needs to be in the istonix form. My cousin had really bad restless leg but after taking Isotonix Calcium she felt so much better! This form of Calcium is not a pill but in a powder and it is mixed with water. When taken just before bed it relieves restless leg. You get 95% absorption with the isotonix form vs. a pill that gives you about 30% absorption. You can visit my website www.marketamerica.com/wisebiz, go to the left side of screen, health and nutrition, select bone and joint health and select Calcium. OR if you can give me your email address I can send you a product description for just the Calcium. All the ingredients etc are listed there. My email is [email protected]____.com

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L.D.

answers from New York on

I had the same thing through all 3 of my pregnancies. My doctors told me to make sure I was getting enough calcium, which I thought I was. What really worked wonders for me was getting up in the night (while I was experiencing the leg cramps) and stretching out my calves. I'd lean against a dresser and stretch one leg out behind me, really focusing on stretching the calf muscle good for a minute or two. Then I'd repeat with the other leg. That's the only thing that helped me. Wish you sister-in-law good luck with the rls and congrats on her new baby-to-be! She is lucky to have you as a helpful sister-in-law!! :)

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