As the name implies, restless leg syndrome causes people to move their legs constantly. This little understood nervous system disorder is surprisingly common. Up to ten percent of the United States population may have this condition, but many do not even realize they are suffering from it. It is essential to understand the underlying cause behind this condition to find the best treatments for restless leg syndrome. Realizing what causes restless leg syndrome can also help people to avoid developing the disorder later in life.
Restless leg syndrome is often ignored or misdiagnosed because the symptoms are vague. The signs of restless leg syndrome typically include an uncontrollable desire to move the legs or involuntary leg twitching. One might feel like their legs are aching, itching, tickling or buzzing. These annoying sensations trigger a compulsion to move the legs. Patients may just experience the symptoms once or twice a month, or it may cause major life disturbances. Symptoms tend to be worse when a person is sitting, lying down, or relaxing, so it can make it impossible to sleep. Doctors diagnose patients as having primary or secondary restless leg syndrome depending on the cause.