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RLS Common In Pregnancy and Linked With Poor Sleep & Daytime Sleepiness

By jeremyc | July 16, 2017

Poor sleep and persistent sleepiness during the day are common symptoms experienced by pregnant women. Health care providers often dismiss such complaints, attributing them to changes in physiology which occurs during the course of normal pregnancy. That may be so, but physiological changes alone are not responsible for these symptoms in many pregnant women; something else is also at play. That something else is restless leg syndrome or RLS.

According to a new study done on pregnant women, prevalence of RLS is pretty common during pregnancy and the condition is linked to poor sleep and persistent sleepiness during the day.

In this study, the researchers found three notable things. One, as many as 36 percent of pregnant women had RLS in their 3rd trimester. Two, nearly 50 percent of pregnant women who had RLS in their 3rd trimester experienced moderate to severe symptoms. Three, pregnant women who had RLS were two times likely to experience poor sleep and daytime function, as well as persistent sleepiness during the day.

For this study, the researchers enrolled 1,563 expectant mothers, all of who were in the 3rd trimester of pregnancy. The average age of the group was 30 years.

The finding of this study highlights the importance of diagnosing and treating RLS in expectant mothers so that pregnancy could become less challenging for many of them.


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