Restless Leg Remedy

12 Nov

I am 28 weeks pregnant with my 3rd child. With each pregnancy, I get restless leg SO bad towards the end of my second trimester and all of my third. It is severe to the point where not only do I have a hard time falling asleep but it wakes me up in the middle of the night. The urge to move, the pain, tingle and need to just move. It’s in my ankles, my knees, my thighs, even my arms and wrists. Being pregnant, there are not many things you can do to relieve restless leg. I’ve tried many things, some that may work for you even though they did not for me, and then I want to share the one Restless Leg Remedy that did work. I have to write, as a disclaimer, that you should always seek professional medical advise over anything written on this blog. 
First and foremost, with my first pregnancy my doctor at the time told me the only thing I could do was take Benadryl to help me sleep. Although I am completely against taking medicine unnecessarily, I was desperate enough at times to do this. I do not recommend this. It’s just not good to be taking medication, especially during pregnancy, that are not in relation to the issue.
Next, I tried hot baths and massages. While they relieved the restlessness in the moment, once they ended so did the relief.
A friend suggested drinking more water and drinking Powerade or Gatorade with electrolytes in them. Fail. Not even a hint of relief. Might work for you though?

Another friend suggested….. are you ready?….. PICKLE JUICE! During my second pregnancy, this actually worked! I don’t know how, and I don’t know why but drinking pickle juice relieved restless leg.

Unfortunately for me, this pregnancy has given me a while new gag reflex. Pickle Juice was simply not going to make it anywhere near my lips. I needed a new solution. I tried bananas and even potatoes- nothing. I tried hot packs, cold packs- it was all the same. No relief. I even tried elevating my feet for 3o minutes before bed (which is hard to accomplish sometimes as a mom of 2, sometimes you just want to go to bed! Not elevate your feet and count minutes).
It was suggested to me to put a bar of soap under my sheets at the foot of my bed. Why? I don’t know, but I tried it because I was that desperate. Nothing. Nope. Did not work. And then a friend suggested Vapor Rub. You know, the ointment you rub on your child’s chest when they are sick and congested.
Restless Leg Remedy
My friend suggested to rub it on my feet at night. I thought, “At this point I’ve even tried a bar of soap at my feet, this seems less crazy anyway”. So I tried it. And within 20 minutes of it on my feet as a test, I was reaching for more to rub on my ankles and knees. It was like heaven in a tub. It truly worked. I don’t even wake up in the middle of the night anymore. I keep it on my nightstand and on nights that I get restless (which seem to be 6 out of 7 nights a week) I just twist that top off and have at it. The only con I can think of at this point, is that it leaves a grease stain on my sheets. I’m thinking once this tub of heaven is empty, I might try Icy/Hot patches. They may give the same “cooling relief” effect and be less messy.
This is in no way a paid advertisement. Truly just a happy, rested pregnant mom who found a remedy that might help others out there. With that said, if the vapor rub people want to send me free products for this post, I wouldn’t say no. Hahahahaha.

45 Responses to “Restless Leg Remedy”

  1. Trisha March 15, 2013 at 4:54 pm #

    Hi! I just stopped over from the Kitchen Fun link up. My son has some issues with sleep due to ADHD and I have been doing some research on weighted blankets to help him sleep better and more soundly. It seems that people that suffer from restless leg also benefit from weighted blankets placed on their legs Might be something worth looking into. Good luck!

  2. Mary March 17, 2013 at 7:31 pm #

    I started with restless leg during my third pregnancy. It didn’t go away after my daughter was born. I went to a overnight sleep study for this and apnea. They did an iron test on me and my was at the low end of normal. She suggested I try taking an iron supplement daily. Seriously, since then, I NEVER have a problem. If you don’t want to take a supplement, eat more iron rich foods. This has been a lifesaver for me.
    Now this is just one cause of restless leg, but since it made such a difference for me, I wanted to share.

    • Mandy March 18, 2013 at 8:47 am #

      Thank you very much! My OB suggested iron supplement too, but I am also seeing a GI regularly that does not want me on any supplements right now. I’ll have to mention this to my mom though, she gets restless leg

  3. Pam April 11, 2013 at 6:24 pm #

    I actually have tried the bar of soap and it works most of the time. I tried the vapor rub last night, and it really did work. I was amazed. It is so strange what works to relieve the creepy crawling feeling.

    • Mandy April 11, 2013 at 8:30 pm #

      can i ask what brand of soap you’ve tried? I’m willing to try again if maybe i just have the wrong brand?

      • Paige April 20, 2013 at 11:09 pm #

        I haven’t tried it, but I read ivory soap is the one to use. Now please excuse me while I fetch my vapo rub, cuz these feet are going crazy tonight!

      • Brook April 21, 2013 at 12:12 pm #

        I also have been using a bar of soap, works 80% of the time. I use Ivory soap because it is fragrance and dye free so won’t ruin my sheets. I can’t wait to try the vapor rub or icky hot patches as they do seem like a non mess option. Thanks for this insight! I have read some doctors think RLS is a sensory symptom which is why heavy blankets and the bar of soap sometimes do this trick. It’s somewhat still a mystery as to what triggers RLS which is why it’s so hard to pin down relief. This article is interesting, I always like to know the whys!

        Hope we all find relief somehow!

        • Mandy April 21, 2013 at 1:01 pm #

          Thanks so much for your input! I wonder if I was just using the wrong brand of soap. I’m definitely willing to try it again- although ever since i started on vapor rub I haven’t had an issue at all!

      • Mary Lippincott October 29, 2015 at 6:23 pm #

        I use home made soap usually. It goes between the bottom sheet and mattress pad. I was told not to use Dove or Ivory.

  4. Brandi April 21, 2013 at 7:29 am #

    I get RLS really bad during pregnancy too. I use the icy hot balm, just a tiny bit on the tops of my feet.

  5. Deborah May 6, 2013 at 7:44 pm #

    I had someone tell me more than a year ago about the soap under the sheet for RS,it works most of the time(any soap works). I found your site because of those times that soap doesn’t work. Will try tonight

  6. Mairead May 23, 2013 at 4:45 pm #

    If you put on thick socks while you sleep, it prevents the sheets getting stained from the Vicks 🙂 also the Vicks on the soles of your feet, can be used to suppress coughing at night .

  7. Lisa Marutz July 15, 2013 at 7:22 pm #

    I have suffered from RLS for years, and it has made my sleep, and my husbands sleep miserable. Most nights, he just bails, because he just can’t sleep with all of my shaking. I’ll try the Vicks tonight, the soap has never worked for me, and I agree, meds that are not prescribed, are not the way I want to go…wish me luck!

    • Mandy July 16, 2013 at 8:06 am #

      Good Luck, Lisa!!! Rub it in between your toes and the back of your ankle where the skin is the thinnest!

  8. Kate August 13, 2013 at 6:43 pm #

    I have had RLS for years. Taking an iron supplement was my solution as well!

  9. Scarlett August 21, 2013 at 6:42 pm #

    This in interesting. Hubby suffers from restless leg and HATES it. Maybe I’ll sneak a bar of soap under his sheets tomorrow. Not sure he’ll try the Vicks…

  10. Misty October 7, 2013 at 7:11 pm #

    My RLS is worse each month right before my period. I use the soap under the sheet and it usually works. I just rubbed Vicks VapoRub on my feet, beyween my toes, and on my ankles to see if it helps my legs tonight. I will try anything!

    • Mandy October 8, 2013 at 7:10 am #

      I sure hope it worked for you! It is a miracle trick for me!!!!!! Isn’t it strange how hormones can make it worse? I ONLY get it when I’m pregnant. I hope you had some relief and rest last night. Thanks for commenting letting me know you’re trying it!

      • Barb October 11, 2013 at 8:01 pm #

        I don’t have RLS really often, but when I do, it’s maddening! I don’t understand how the bar of soap under your sheets works at all. Does it go anywhere at the foot of the bed? Do you have to put your feet on it? I don’t get it! Meanwhile, I’m thrilled to know about the Vicks Vaporub idea and look forward to trying it next time. p.s. I must admit, just reading all of these posts made my legs start!

        • Mandy October 13, 2013 at 9:31 am #

          I really don’t understand the soap one either, but yes you’re supposed to just keep it anywhere by your feet. It was weird that it worked the first couple times I tried it but eventually the soap trick stopped working for me. The Vicks is still my go-to! 🙂

  11. Sharon Duncan October 9, 2013 at 6:59 am #

    I can’t even begin to tell you what the last 15 yrs have been like with my husband’s RLS!!!
    He did a sleep test and the technician said “Yep, he DEFINITELY has Restless Leg Syndrome!!!” But no one has been able to give you a remedy. So Thank You for this!
    Between his RLS & snoring and my Frozen Shoulder pain and hot flashes it’s a wonder either one of us functions throughout the day. God has certain perfected PATIENCE in us both!!!

    • Mandy October 9, 2013 at 7:20 am #

      OH MY! What a lack of sleep you both must have! I can’t complain about 3 kids 3 and under causing my lack of sleep anymore! 🙂 I really truly hope you like this remedy. It was a miracle find for me. It does seem weird having to rub the goop on at night, and it does leave a greasy stain on my sheets so make sure you’ve got towels or something at his feet. Good luck!

  12. Rae October 10, 2013 at 8:38 am #

    To avoid greasy sheets,wear sox. This is also GREAT for a solution to coughing at night for adults and children!

  13. Lori October 11, 2013 at 7:56 pm #

    Hi! We have a product called Biofreeze at the chiropractor I work for. it is similar to icy hot but a cool feeling, non greasy and much less offensive on the smell side. It has a roll on. I sometimes get pain in my knees when I over work them and I just roll some of this on them and it feels better almost instantly. I just thought I would share that cause it’s a lot like the vicks but smells better and is cool, not hot.

    • Mandy October 13, 2013 at 9:31 am #

      OOOOO thanks for sharing! I’m going to have to try and find that here locally and try it 🙂

  14. Heather October 11, 2013 at 9:31 pm #

    I work as an STNA and since my pregnancy last year I believe I acquired RLS and will be trying this!

  15. Monette October 13, 2013 at 10:55 pm #

    always check with your dr before you try any oral remedies, but after suffering over 30 years, this works for me:

    Liquid Ionic Magnesium…Personal preference-I dissolve powdered fizzy electrolytes in Orange Juice and add a dropper full 3 times daily. I noticed a bit of change after 2 days….two weeks later is night and day. You can omit the electrolytes after first dose in morning if you find you don’t need the energy. Sometimes I put a dropperful in tea or whatever I am drinking…I would take it straight from the bottle if I had to!! Good luck!!

  16. DeDe October 27, 2013 at 4:11 am #

    OMG – it is 4:05am and I have been up all night with RLS for the 3rd night in a row- on Dr Prescribe Meds- works for a while, I am even on a double dose- so I am going to try this for sure tomorrow night – I will make a mad dash to the store 1st thing for the vapor rub, I just pray it wiorks. Thanks for sharing.. Keeping my fingers crosed.

    p.S. Soap did not work at all nor did the magnesium.

    • Mandy October 27, 2013 at 8:58 am #

      Good luck DeDe! I hope it works for you too, I know how aggravating it is!

      • DeDe October 28, 2013 at 8:01 pm #

        Mandy, Mandy, Mandy
        I could just hug you , I am so for real, I have been suffering from RLS for many many years, several different medication, the soap idea, the magnism idea, hot baths that only last while your in the bath, pacing the floor, I thank God and you that I found your pin, it worked perfect and I mean perfect, I slept so darn well last night, not even a slight notice of RLS, I Kidd you not. Unless you suffer from RLS you can’t imaninge why I am beyond happy, beside myself with graditude. Thank you, Thank you, from someone who finally can get some much needed sleep. For you spouses or parents of someone with RLS it is a nightmare, sometimes you just want to cut off your leg. I hope Vicks Vapor Rubs catches on to this, I am a chronic RLS sufferer, it’s a miracle in a blue jar… When your up all night trying to relax your leg and are extremely tired and frustrated, near tears, who cares about the smell or grease.

        • Mandy October 29, 2013 at 7:33 am #

          I am so glad it worked for you!!! Some of my other readers have said they alternate Vicks and Icy-Hot patches. Either way, I know it’s nice to have relief and I’m glad you were able to get some rest.

  17. michelle November 16, 2013 at 5:46 am #

    My husband already says I’m addicted to vicks . Can’t waite to try it for my restless leg. Maybe I just need to buy stock in Vicks. In winter when everybody has colds I put some in a pot of water on the stove on simmer helps with congestion.

    • Mandy November 16, 2013 at 8:11 am #

      THAT’S SO FUNNY!!! … good idea with the pot and stove too!

  18. Annie March 14, 2014 at 9:35 pm #

    I know that this is going to sound really strange, but I have had RLS for over 30 years. Normally, I know that I am going to get it because my lower right back starts hurting. I have found several non-invasive techniques. One, try sitting on your commode for about 5 minutes, or I can sometimes just sit at my desk. It works 90% of the time. Now the really weird thing. Place a vibrator on your pelvis bone for about 5 minutes and it stops the RLS cold. Who woulda thought.

  19. Joy November 2, 2014 at 12:06 am #

    Vicks vapor rub also comes in a greaseless cream so you actually. Don’t have to worry about your sheets. Rls can also be caused by medication, seizures, magnesium deficiency and low dopamine levels in your brain that can be treated medically

  20. Kathy R. December 15, 2014 at 5:59 pm #

    I almost can’t wait to try that the next time it happens to me! I did not read through all of the replies, so I may be repeating something someone has already said, but another excellent, if not unusual use, for Vapor Rub is getting rid of toenail fungus. Seriously! Within 6 months I had horses step full weight on both of my big toenails. My doctor said they broke the growth plate of my nail bed. Within months I noticed my nails darkening, becoming thick and misshaped. I refused to take the prescribed medicine as the side effects are worse than an ugly toe. Several years went by and they got no better. Eventually, a woman I knew told me to stuff Vapor Rub underneath my nail once every other day and it will kill the fungus. It worked like a charm. It took as long as it takes a nail to grow out completely and today, you would never know I had a problem, let along nail fungus.

  21. Jodie January 29, 2015 at 6:44 pm #

    I use this for daughter when she has a bad cough
    I apply it to the bottom of her feet and cover them with socks so it won’t stain sheets. My boyfriend deals with RLS So I’m going to have him try it.

  22. Megan February 5, 2015 at 9:40 pm #

    Vicks really does work.

  23. Adeline April 16, 2015 at 7:34 pm #

    I have had RLS since my first pregnancy in 1956. I have tried all the remedies mentioned and they all worked for about a month or less. I finally started the prescription meds 3 yrs ago and it works sometimes. But I started using essential oil Lavender from Young Living. It works wonders. Have been using for 8 months and can apply on the bottom of my feet with a roll on bottle. I do this at bed time and let it soak in and dry so there is no mess in the bed linens. This takes about 10-15 mins. I also have RLS in the daytime and when I can’t take my shoes off I apply it behind my ears and on my wrists. (as in a mtg. or church etc.) This works most of the time. I hope this helps. It is really surprising the number of people that have this problem.

    • Mandy May 15, 2015 at 10:27 am #

      Thanks so much for your comment and tip! So far Vicks is still working for me, but I will keep your tip tucked away in case I need it later down the road 😉

  24. Tomi May 27, 2015 at 5:24 am #

    I am so excited to try the Vicks treatment tonight. I, too, suffer from RLS and have for years. It usually leads to 5 sleepless nights a week. I sympathize with anyone going through this because unless you have experienced it…you can’t understand! Thank you so much Mandy for this glimmer of hope!

  25. Gaga July 5, 2015 at 2:02 pm #

    Just came across this site via Pinterest. I’ve never tried the Vick’s remedy but have had wonderful success with a homeopathic treatment. At the health food store, look for cell salts and get the combination of Magnesium and Phosphorous. The ones I take are made by Hyland’s and are called MagPhos. They’re tiny little, powdery tablets that you put under your tongue and allow them to dissolve. My chiropractor advised me to start with six. You shake them out into the cap of the bottle, trying not to touch them. Shake them into your mouth under your tongue. It only takes a few minutes to dissolve. I usually have relief within minutes. I don’t always take them before bed, but if I feel the sensations coming on, I get up and take them. They’re about $12 for a bottle of 500 pills and worth every penny for a good night’s sleep. Hope the helps someone.

    • Mandy December 30, 2015 at 5:13 pm #

      That is really great advice! I will look for those and give it a shot

  26. Holly September 19, 2015 at 7:30 pm #

    Hey!! I’m 36 & have had RLS for a several years now. But I think mine is more severe than what I have read about. I actually have it in my entire body. My arms have been HORRIBLE lately. Worse than my legs 😢 I am currently taking Neurotin. I HATE all the side effects I’ve read about it. And some nights I have to take a muscle relaxer in addition to it. I have so much anxiety about going to bed & having to deal with the RLS. I have had to take 3 hot baths in one night for relief, use my TENS unit & some times I have to do other things I don’t want to mention. (NOTHING ILLEGAL, just embarrassing)

    I’ve had many friends ‘think’ they have it. And ask me to describe the feeling. The only way I can describe it is by saying it feels like a have a ball of fire in my body. And it just intensifies the longer I hold it in. Then it almost feels like I have to do a full body tourettes jerk.

    I am so sorry for such a long comment. But I really want to know if this is how you all feel too, or if maybe I’m dealing with something more serious.

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