Liz Fulcher, AromaticWisdomInstitute.com
March/April '16 issue The Essential Herbal Magazine
Ask anyone who’s ever experienced RLS (Restless Leg Syndrome) if it makes them crazy, and I’m sure they’ll answer with a resounding “yes!” I know because I’m one of those people. Fortunately, it doesn’t bother me at night as is common with RLS, but I do experience it when I’m the passenger in a car (but not when driving which I find interesting) and during air travel. There is something about the vibration of both these forms of transportation that causes my legs to feel like ants are crawling under my skin.
What is Restless Leg Syndrome?
According WebMD, “People with restless legs syndrome have uncomfortable sensations in their legs (and sometimes arms or other parts of the body) and an irresistible urge to move their legs to relieve the sensations. The condition causes an uncomfortable, “itchy,” “pins and needles,” or “creepy crawly” feeling in the legs. The sensations are usually worse at rest, especially when lying or sitting.”
Yep, that’s exactly how I’ve experience it.
As a Clinical Aromatherapist and 25-year veteran of using essential oils, they were the first thing I turned to for my own relief from the weird, crawly, itchy sensations, and I’m happy to report that I’ve had wonderful results.
The oils which I have found to have the greatest soothing effect on restless legs are those high in molecules from the Ester chemical family. Ester-rich essential oils are also highly anti-inflammatory which may be why they work well to calm the spastic sensation that one experiences with restless leg.
Examples of essential oils high in Ester molecules are: Bergamot, Bergamot Mint, Cardamom, Roman Chamomile, Clary Sage, Geranium, Helichrysum, Ho Wood, Jasmine, Lavender, Petitgrain, Siberian Fir, Ylang Ylang.
Below are 3 recipes that have really helped calm my own restless leg discomfort.
1. Sleepy Legs Night Cream
12 drops Lavender
10 drops Marjoram
5 drops Roman Chamomile
2 oz glass jar
Directions: Add the essential oils to 2 ounces of unscented cream and stir. Rub this blend into your legs anytime you experience jumpy legs. Apply as often as needed.
2. Happy Legs Travel Spray
9 drops Petitgrain
8 drops Sweet Orange
8 drops Siberian Fir
2 oz Spray Bottle
Directions: Simply add the essential oils to the hydrosol in the 2 oz bottle and shake well before each use. Spray in your legs and rub vigorously, then spray again.
3. Grateful Gams Bath Salt
10 drops Frankincense
5 drops Marjoram
5 drops Clary Sage
3 drops Ylang Ylang
Epsom Salts (high in magnesium which is also helpful)
2 oz glass or plastic jar
Directions: Add the essential oils to the salt and blend well together. Sprinkle the full 2 ounces into the already-full bathtub. Step in and relax. Follow up with the Sleepy Legs Night Cream.