Restless Leg Syndrome: How to Know If You Have It

Mental Health & Sleep Center, Restless Leg Syndrome
on October 22, 2013

Restless leg syndrome (RLS) is a neurologic disorder that seriously affects 2 to 3 percent of adults in the U.S., according to the Willis-Ekbom Foundation. The condition, also known as Willis-Ekbom disease (WED), results in an irresistible urge to move the legs which is often accompanied by unusual or unpleasant sensations that may be described as creeping, tugging, or pulling.

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In order for you to be correctly diagnosed with WED/RLS, you must meet the criteria described in the five bullet points below:

• You have a strong urge to move your legs which you can’t really resist.

• Your WED/RLS symptoms start or become worse when you are resting.

• Your WED/RLS symptoms get better when you move your legs. Relief persists as long as the movement continues.

• Your WED/RLS symptoms are worse in the evening especially when you are resting.

• The urge to move your legs and any unpleasant sensations cannot be explained by another condition, such as leg cramps, positional discomfort, leg swelling or arthritis.

For more information about WED/RLS, visit the Willis-Ekbom Disease Foundation website.