ADHD and Legs — ADHD Tip O the Day 898

Continuing with Sleep, Science, and ADHD:

As if we didn’t have enough problems, we ADHDers often have leg problems. These include restless legs syndrome (RLS), paroxysmal abnormal leg movements (PALM, aka ‘the jerks’) and leg cramps.

The book says these happen during sleep, and my wife confirms that for the first two, but I also have them as I’m trying to go to sleep.  They do not help.  I also have them if sitting a long time watching TV or at a restaurant.

But I  have them under fairly good control.

1. RLS: one hour before bedtime, two calcium magnesium zinc pills. At bedtime, Achilles tendon stretches. If RLS  during the night,  CALM, a magnesium powder preparation, and any time I wake up, more stretches.

2.PALM: one hour before bedtime,  a quarter of a glass of tonic water, which contains quinine, which is off the market otherwise. If I have the jerks later, CBS oil.

3. Leg Cramps: when I stopped taking ibuprofen, they markedly improved. I happened to find this association on the net.  For cramps during the night,  magnesium lotion.  Stretches may or may not help.

4. For sleep in general: one hour before bedtime,  5  mg melatonin dissolvable and 5 mg delayed release. This usually works. I vary this depending on whatever. (The book says 2 or 3 mgm – I’ve never seen this work.)

If I can’t get to sleep in 20 minutes, either initially or after I wake in the middle of the night, I get out of bed and piddle until I’m sleepy.

Using all of these approaches, I get a good night’s sleep about three out of four nights.

One strategy is to not get upset if I’m having a sleep problem; I know it’ll be better the next night.

I’d be delighted to hear your issues and approaches and nocturnal adventures  (I mean regarding sleep.)





In Kids, Probably Same in Adults 

Legs and ADHD

Techy for ADHD Sleep, from Jerry Bair

Sleep Hygiene

Personal Notes O the Day:

  1. I  highly recommend the general sleep hygiene tips.  

2. I’m a third of the way through draft 10 of Living Well With ADHD, which I thought I would publish. However, although I’ve found only a few errors, I’ve found many places for improvement. With so many changes, I will need a draft 11, which I hope to be the one to publish.  Oh, well.

Maybe I could run a contest to see who guesses closest to the actual date of publication.  I don’t think I’d win even if I were eligible.

3.  Probably wind up this science section on the next ADHD post.








@addstrategies  #adhd  #add  @dougmkpdp

About doug with ADHD

I am a psychiatric physician. I learned I have ADHD at age 64, and then wrote two ADHD books for adults, focusing on strategies for making your life better. I just published my first novel, Alma Means Soul. Your Life Can Be Better; strategies for adults with ADD/ADHD available at, or (for e books) Living Daily With Adult ADD or ADHD: 365 Tips O the Day ( e-book). This is one tip at a time, one page at a time, at your own pace. It's meant to last a year. As a child, I was a bully. Then there was a transformation. Now I am committed to helping people instead abusing them. The Bully was published in January, 2016. It's in print or e book, on Amazon.
This entry was posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, dysfunctions, medication, medication, medicine, strategies and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to ADHD and Legs — ADHD Tip O the Day 898

  1. rammkatze says:

    Ugh, sleep. I usually have my antiphyschotics that calm my head as well as make me sleepy. Sadly, because I’ve been at home with no work to do, I’m not tired enough, and I can’t fall asleep, even if I’m tired. It’s weird.
    Yesterday was awful. It took me 2h in bed to fall asleep (1 of those hours reading). I read for 1h, waiting for the pill to take effect. I realized it wasn’t going to work unless I put the book away and try to sleep. I tossed and turned. I thought of restless leg syndrome – mine do seem to impatiently jerk once in a while. I tried several positions. I looked at the clock: almost one hour had passed. I thought of getting up and doing something – I use that strategy too – but I WAS sleepy. I do have an app that makes white noise (I like the river flowing), but that one hasn’t worked very well lately, so I decided to try a nature documentary on Netflix. Bingo!
    Keeping it loud enough that I can hear it is good, because I’ll be engaged in understanding what the narrator is saying. Inbetween, it’s just soothing sounds and music, and then more talking. It didn’t take long for me to reach the point that I was falling asleep hard enough to strech my arm, click the button to lock the phone and doze off.
    Using background noise is my go-to move. But the kind of sound I need changes. Sometimes it’s a music concert, low enough that I have to focus very hard on listening to it. Sometimes I need someone talking (like a youtube instructional video). Yesterday was the first time with the documentary and it was awesome. Mosty days, thankfully, my white noise app is enough, or I don’t even need that.


  2. holdthatthought says:

    also, sidenote: did you ever get that thing with uploading your pictures to WordPress resolved?


    • dino – pictures resolved? not really. the workaround was pretty complicated and often didn’t work, not sure i was ever doing it correctly. i just try to pick smaller ones, and then edit down to around 300 x 300, on word press. works about 75% of the time as you can see. its limiting tho, too many i cant use.
      thanks for your tech support, i sure can use it


  3. holdthatthought says:

    i suspect that i struggle with issues similar to what you’ve experienced but they weren’t identified in my sleep study. after trying out a bunch of different sleeping medications (with varying degrees of success), i’ve finally settled on taking a little bit of clonazepam 30-45 minutes before bedtime and i haven’t slept this well in years. the only con is that i need about 9 or so hours of quality sleep to feel well rested. weird.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.