Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Medical Marijuana: The Cure for Restless Legs Syndrome

Restless legs syndrome affects around 10% of the population. Symptoms include itchy, tingly, prickly, or otherwise restless feeling in the legs. While there is no cure for RLS, current treatments include drugs such as benzodiazepines, anticonvulsants, narcotic pain relievers, and dopaminergic drugs, all of which have considerable side effects and minimal effectiveness.
For obvious reasons, RLS and insomnia often go hand in hand. A friend of mine who had long suffered from insomnia began suffering from RLS in her late twenties. She had often treated her insomnia with medical marijuana, either through smoking or edibles. She soon realized that the medical marijuana she had been using to treat insomnia also seemed lessen the symptoms of her RLS. 

"Now, when I wake up with RLS, I immediately reach for my medical marijuana, and by the time I start to feel the effects I'm back asleep."

While there are no clinical studies regarding the use of medical marijuana to treat RLS, some people swear by it. Depending on when your RLS usually occurs you may experiment with different methods of treatment. If your RLS usually comes on just before bed, you may want to try edibles an hour before bedtime. If you usually wake up in the middle of the night with RLS, smoking might have a more immediate effect. Experiment for yourself and see what works best!