Bradley Gillespie, PharmD
While I cannot tell you exactly why I have Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS), and I cannot begin to explain the pathology behind it, I can attest to the misery associated with it. As most of us who have this condition know, the symptoms are not usually the same in most people; nonetheless, we all share a general dislike for the ailment. I am no different.
When I first started experiencing RLS, no matter what I did I just could not get comfortable at bedtime. While I cannot pinpoint when it started, or what it felt like, I found that I was having more and more trouble getting to sleep, and was staying up later and later every night. Before long, I was becoming more and more sleep-deprived, and less effective during the day due to my exhaustion.
While some people describe the sensation of RLS as pins and needles, burning, aches or pains, I think my symptoms were a bit unique. I remember describing my symptoms at first as an uncontrolled jerk of either of my legs. I remember referring to them as my foot seizures. In the early days, it was nothing more than an oddity. But it got worse: Fast-forward a few years and it had taken a firmer grip on my life. By this time, the jerking was more intense — almost violent in nature ... enough of a kick to wake my wife and nearly pitch her out of bed onto the floor. Another key element was a feeling of tightness: It felt like there was constant tension in my legs, especially when I laid on my stomach (unfortunately for me, my favorite sleeping position). I tossed and turned throughout the night, trying in vain to find a comfortable sleeping position.
In response to my problems, I tried therapeutic massage at bedtime, as well as a number of prescription medications to manage my symptoms, ranging from baclofen to benzodiazepines. None of them brought me the pure relief of symptoms that I was seeking. It is time for me to try another treatment, one that has been formulated in the USA with multiple ingredients shown to help people manage the symptoms associated with RLS: Calm Legs.
Restless Legs sufferer Bradley Gillespie, PharmD, is trained as a clinical pharmacist and has practiced in an industrial setting for the past 20-plus years. Currently, he supports efforts at the National Institutes of Health to develop therapeutics for rare and neglected diseases. He remains a registered pharmacist and operates a medical writing business.