I have suffered from restless leg syndrome since I was in my late teens. RLS is a difficult thing to deal with, it feels like there are bugs crawling through your legs when they are at rest. The only thing that helps is to move or wiggle them to stop the discomfort. When my symptoms first began, I was at a loss, I didn’t know what to do or how to cope. My doctor was no help, in fact, he just kind of blew me off. This was back in the day when RLS wasn’t recognized as an actual illness. In fact, I used to wrap my legs in cold, wet towels, then wrap trash bags around them so I wouldn’t get the bed or my husband soaking wet. Hopefully he appreciated that little extra effort. I used to have a few drinks before bed too. That seemed to help. Most people drank to get a buzz, I drank at night so the misery would go away.
Eventually RLS started to hit the on medicine scale somewhere. Medication became available to help alleviate the symptoms. I used to take it when it first came out, but since that time, my RLS was only bad at night, causing me many restless nights and cold wet towels, so I gave up the Requip (RLS medication) and stuck with generic sleeping pills. This did the trick for a few years, but I eventually I went with the “hard stuff”, Ambien. It’s kind of a scary drug but it works for me. It kind of sucks though, too. No alcohol what-so-ever on nights the pill is taken. So I made an easy decision, ditch the alcohol for sleep!
All was fine and dandy till a few months ago when different symptoms began to appear. The restless leg syndrome had turned into full-on burning in hands and feet along with chest pain that radiated around the back. I dislike doctors immensely and drug my feet for several weeks to finally get the nerve to go see my doctor. Prior to this appointment a close relative told me she had been recently diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. After reading these symptoms, the majority of them were chest pain, extreme burning in hands / feet, pain at certain pressure points, insomnia, worsened irritable bowel syndrome, depression, difficulty with exercise because of the pain, and my favorite: migraines. All symptoms that I currently have.
Since my heart is in good condition with an only little scraping during my heart cath and my echocardiogram was fine as well, it’s time to move on to a new diagnosis and it sounds like we have a winner. 25% of the people with Fibromyalgia symptoms are completely disabled. I refuse to allow that to happen to me.