Restless Leg Syndrome and Acupuncture

Acupuncture has been a well known practice for centuries and is now being used to help relieve symptoms of Restless Leg Syndrome. Traditional acupuncture actually considers RLS a disorder stemming from problems with the spleen.

A traditional Chinese medical technique, and practiced fro more than 2000 years, acupuncture is used to unblock a persons Chi, an energy that is believed to include all things flowing through the body on pathways referred to as meridians.

By inserting the needles of acupuncture into certain points of the body to balance the opposing yin and yang. With this balance, chi can flow through the body keeping the person healthy. The opposite is when a person is sick; it is believed their chi is being obstructed.

Types of Acupuncture

While many people will know what acupuncture are, there are different variations, each believed to hold the answers to finding relief through inserting needles into the body. Auriculotherapy, also known as ear acupuncture, consists of the belief that the ear is actually a map of the organs in the body.

If there is a problem with an organ, a needle is inserted into a certain point in the ear. Similar beliefs include Iridology, the belief that the iris holds a map of the body as well as Reflexology, the belief that the foot is a map of the body.

In relation to RLS, acupuncture can be combined, in some cases with both conventional and traditional medicine with alternative treatments. In this case it is the hope that the alternative treatment will lower the need for the medications.

In the past acupuncture has been used with some success for relief of rheumatoid arthritis, by inserting needles in order to send a signal to the brain to release natural painkillers (endorphins), in turn it is believed that the treatment can also open the pathways for the parts of the brain that are related to RLS. If needles are not a choice for you, Acupressure is a possibility. Acupressure is similar to acupuncture, but applies pressure to the sites instead of needles.


While acupuncture may be the choice for some, Reflexology is also a popular choice, using the feet and hands instead of the entire body for relief of symptoms. In reflexology it is believed that the brain, head and spine are all connected and respond to massage of particular sections of the feet. Pressure or massage is done through applying pressure to the feet and/or hand certain techniques including the thumb, finger and hand.

These movements, done with out lotion work to bring about physical change to the body. A simple treatment that is suggested is to where what are called “acupressure“ sandals each day, this in turn will aid in opening reflexology meridians. With these pathways clear, it is believed that symptoms will also lessen and comfort restored.

In the end whether acupuncture, acupressure or reflexology are chosen as treatments, each has its own system to lower stress, often seen as a cause of RLS and other sleep disorders.