My legs with a mind of their own
My days are spent working, exercising and socialising. It is a good mix, and most of the time, by the time bedtime approaches I’m relaxed and already starting to dose. Yet the instant I climb into bed, I cannot sleep. Why? Because of my damned legs. I cannot keep them still!
I am an occasional sufferer of Restless Legs Syndrome. This condition causes an uncomfortable feeling in the sufferer’s legs. It’s like a crawling sensation under the skin, or a deep ache, and it will not go away. The urge to move is irresistible. Walk a little and the discomfort disappears; stay still for long periods and it returns.
During the day, it is something I can ignore for the majority of the time, but at night . . . I WANT TO SCREAM!!
Why is it when I want to sleep, my legs feel like they want to run a marathon! Given I am an arthritis sufferer, I am used to dealing with pain, and I can focus on controlling my urges to kick out, but it is not enough. Within an hour of slipping into a slumber, the nagging ache returns, waking me up. My feet and legs twitch and shooting pains rush up and down my legs. It’s not especially painful, but it is very, very annoying.
I’ve tried painkillers and anti-inflammatory tablets, but they don’t work. So I have to suffer, night after night.
There is one solution. Walk around!
Even if the pain is extreme, the instant I get out of bed I feel relief. Isn’t that bizarre? Why should it be so immediate, and why won’t the ache go away whilst I am horizontal?
I don’t want to walk around the house once an hour during the night. I don’t want to do stretching exercises, and I don’t want to train for a marathon! What part of my brain refuses to listen? I just want to sleep.
Zzzzzzz . . .