Restless Leg Syndrome Specialist

Sonoran Sleep Center

Sleep Medicine & Sleep Labs located in Glendale, AZ

If you experience tingling, aching, or crawling sensations when sitting or lying down, you might have restless leg syndrome (RLS). Though anyone can experience restless leg syndrome, it’s about twice as common in women than men. At Sonoran Sleep Center, board-certified sleep medicine doctor Sarah Patel, MD, provides complete care for restless leg syndrome. After an exam and review of your symptoms, she can make recommendations to help you feel better. To make an appointment in Glendale, Arizona, call the office or book online today.

Restless Leg Syndrome Q&A

What is restless leg syndrome?

Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) is characterized by a persistent and uncomfortable urge to move your legs. You might experience these symptoms throughout the day, but they're most common at night when you’re sitting or lying down.

Restless leg syndrome affects people of all ages. There’s no cure, but a combination of healthy lifestyle changes and prescription medication can reduce uncomfortable symptoms and help you sleep soundly.

What are the symptoms of Restless Leg Syndrome?

Symptoms of restless leg syndrome (RLS) include:

  • An urge to move your legs
  • Tingling or crawling sensations that occur during rest
  • Nighttime leg twitching
  • Symptoms that worsen throughout the night

The sensations caused by restless leg syndrome typically occur inside the limb. Often, people describe them as pulling, throbbing, aching, itching or electric.

When should I see a sleep doctor about Restless Leg Syndrome?

Make an appointment at Sonoran Sleep Center if you regularly experience uncomfortable leg sensations when lying down in bed at night. That’s particularly true if your symptoms keep you up or affect your quality of life. 

What causes Restless Leg Syndrome?

Experts aren’t sure why some people experience restless leg syndrome (RLS), but there are a few theories. One of those theories is that restless leg syndrome occurs because of an imbalance of dopamine –– a neurochemical that helps control muscle movement.

Low iron stores (ferritin) increase the risk of having RLS. It runs in families, especially if the condition starts before age 40. Pregnancy may temporarily worsen RLS. Some women may develop RLS during pregnancy, especially during their third trimester.

How is Restless Leg Syndrome diagnosed?

If restless leg syndrome (RLS), is suspected, Dr. Patel will review your past medical history, medication history. Dr. Patel may order blood tests to evaluate ferritin levels (iron stores). Ferritin levels <70ng/mL may cause RLS. 

How is Restless Leg Syndrome treated?

At Sonoran Sleep Center, Dr. Patel usually treats restless leg syndrome (RLS) with prescription medication. Depending on your symptoms, she might recommend:

  • Treatment includes non-pharmacological or pharmacological medications
  • Treating the underlying cause may also be effective
  • Dr. Patel does not prescribe opiates

Often, it takes some trial and error to find a medication that works best. You may also benefit from healthy lifestyle changes, like exercising regularly, avoiding caffeine, and establishing good sleep hygiene.

If RLS keeps you up at night, make an appointment at Sonoran Sleep Center. Call the office or book online today.