I am diagnosed with RLS & Hypnic jerks. The RLS is not troubling me at all, as I really don't have any symptoms while I am awake. The chronic issue that prevents me sleeping is hypnic jerks. I drift off to sleep rather well and suddenly my arms begin to move, straighten and stiffen (this can be painful) and I am woken up. I wake up as soon as I begin to feel the movement starting.
I have been through a lot of tests over the last three years and the results are all normal with the exception of my iron, which is a little low.
A combination of clonazepam and gabapentin work to control the movements and allow me to sleep.
However, I would like to know if there is an underlying cause that could be treated instead of taking medication to control the movements.
Your symptoms of moving in sleep could be due to a sleep disorder called Periodic Limb Movement Disorder (PLMD). They disrupt sleep and cause involuntary movements during sleep. The cause is not known, hence only the symptoms can be controlled.
But you could follow good sleep hygiene measures like going to bed at the same time, waking up at the same time, avoidance of alcohol, smoking and caffeinated beverages. Maintain warm, comfortable bedroom environment and engage in relaxing activities like a warm bath before bed time. This will help reduce the severity of your symptoms.
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