Q. Being from a science/medical background, it frustrates and irritates me to no end that a silly nonsense remedy, putting soap under the bottom sheet, actually WORKS. I’ve dealt with severe restless legs syndrome (RLS) for years. During the worst phases, I got NO sleep four or five nights a week because I just couldn’t stop moving my legs.
Desperation drove me to try the soap about six months ago. I haven’t had a bad night since. AT ALL.
I’ll actually have RLS symptoms in the living room watching television, and they abate as soon as I go to bed where my soap is. This actually makes me a little bit mad, because it makes NO SENSE! There’s no rational reason why this should work, but it does!

A. We can’t disagree with you. Putting soap under the bottom sheet makes no sense to us either. Nevertheless, hundreds of readers report benefit. Of course, others tell us it is worthless. But we think such an inexpensive, low-risk approach is worth a try.

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  1. Jenny

    Hi Everybody
    Well after years of taking Sifrol for RLS, last Friday night I tried the Soap under my sheet…. my left leg was RLS free but my right leg was still bad. Sunday nite is the first nites rest I have had without medication in Years !!!
    No placebo effect here !!! I went into this thinking No Way this will work, but I was wrong!!!!
    It really does work. Honestly you will never know how grateful I am to all the people here on this site whose stories I read and gave me hope, even if I was a lil skeptical.
    Thankyou thankyou thankyou from the bottom of my heart ❤

  2. Jenny

    OMG !!! I have CHRONIC RSL. I’m going to try this for sure.
    I’m scripted Sifrol. But if this works. I’ll be eternally grateful. Thanks guys. I’ll let u know. Happy Easter.

  3. HomeRemediesMom

    I am testing the soap for restless legs on my hubby – have to do it all in secret as he would NEVER admit it helped if he knew – it’s working.lol

  4. Barbara H.

    I have terrible problems with Restless Leg. A solution that works most of the time is the use of my magnet insoles (of the Japanese magnet pyramid scheme variety). I do not wear them in shoes, but I do put an insole inside of socks and wear the socks to bed. If I forget the socks and the symptoms start, it is much harder to get the RLS symptoms under control. I have more problems than I used to, and can’t help but wonder if it has something to do with the vegan diet I have been on for most of 6 years, and the lack of iron in my diet (although I do have an egg every day–not vegan, but just for nutritional insurance.) I plan to add iron to my diet to see if that helps as well. BH

  5. clb

    Soap under sheet helped but taking a magnesium pill every night has helped so much more, I was really bad until I started taking one pill each night and now I don’t tighten up on walks and do not have the leg jumpiness at all.

  6. JK

    Gave it a whirl… did not work for me… more’s the pity! It’s so frustrating that sleeping on my stomach puts just enough pressure on my thighs to keep the rls quiet, but hurts my old neck! Thanks for giving me the opportunity to try a harmless remedy.

  7. S.H.

    Placebo, my eye! After a few months, the soap loses effectiveness; and if the soap slips off the end of the bed, I have RLS that night; the next day when making the bed and I find the soap on the floor, I know why I had RLS the night before!
    My soaps (2 ivory, 1 foofoo soap and one irishspring foofooscent (blue) are in a nylon net zipper lingerie bag; under the mattress pad and works; but, they are about 6 months old and the past few nights I have experienced RLS so it’s time to change them; it is NOT placebo; but, I DO think it has to do with some sort of electrical charge building up in the legs and when the feet/legs touch the soap, the charge (slight) discharges into the soap which has a positive charge (magnesium and potassium )?
    Placebo? my eye!

  8. Shirley Z.

    I’ve been successful for years with the soap under the sheet theory. Recently I was away from home and developed a cramping in my foot. I put a cake of the motel soap in my sock and wonders of all wonders, it worked! I’ve also had success with all different types of soap.

  9. RM

    I have suffered for years from extremely painful muscle cramps at night. I decided to put soap under the bottom sheet and it really worked. I do not awaken from the excruciating cramps. It is unbelievable, but very happy.

  10. Sandy

    I finally got a chance to try the soap under the sheet routine, and thank goodness it worked. A very small cake of motel soap kept me from having the anticipated leg cramps after walking the entire 4 mile-strip at Las Vegas recently. Didn’t have the proper walking shoes, was getting blisters, my lower back ached, tops of my thighs were sore and I was getting leg cramps. I believe the soap worked, but of course I also eat a couple bananas and some OJ. I slept soundly the entire night with no pain or cramps. I’ve listened to your show for years, and I’m glad to share my comments. Sandy

  11. abigail

    A reminder that the soap needs to be replaced after about 3 months. The old soap bars can be put in shoes to eliminate foot odor.

  12. Carol M.

    I am 77 years old and know for a fact. The bar of soap under the sheets does work! I use two bars in my queen size bed. This method does not always work for my husband who is on three different types medication. Sometimes it works & sometimes not.
    We really believe medication interferes with the soap some how. All I know is I have been using the soap for nine months & it works for me. My sister in Arizona said it works well for her also. She is only on one type medicine.
    Where can I locate the original message about the Vicks Vaporub method for toenail fungus?

  13. DWD

    This writer gave me a chuckle. How can the writer who has a science/medical background not be familiar with the placebo effect? Placebos work in like 1/3 of people, so if nothing else the soap under the sheet will work for 1/3 of the folks with restless leg. In reality no one knows, it may be the molecules given off from soap that work on the body, it maybe some of the inert binders in soap.
    We may never know because no one is going to fund research for this, though perhaps they should. If one could find the mechanism, perhaps it would add another way to administer medications. Medicated socks for instance. To the writer’s credit they admitted it worked for them after they tried it. If they are still frustrated and irritated, I suggest they read Jeffery Brantley’s book on Mindfulness. It may help them cope with this frustration and irritation. I found the book helpful and I use the soap for foot cramps and aches.

  14. Ross

    It works for me.
    I found that the soap must be close to my legs.
    It didn’t work as well when it slipped over to my wife side of the bed.

  15. Bob O.

    My experience has been similar to that of Barbara Liposchak. Several years ago I was suffering from recurring sieges of RLS and decided to try the soap treatment. It didn’t work and I gave it up. I went back to menthol muscles rubs. Recently I heard the issue being discussed again on Peoples’ Pharmacy and made another try. To my amazement it worked. Considering what might have been different this time I realized that the first time I had used a antibacterial detergent bar.
    This time I had selected a bar of goat’s milk soap made in a traditional fashion. I have now sliced another such bar into thin slices (The full sized bar was uncomfortable if I rolled over on it) and scattered the slices across the area where my legs would lie in the bed. Fearful that the thin slices would crumble into a mess I slipped each slice into a separate plastic sandwich bag. This seemed to diminish the effect. So I have returned to the uncovered slices. This spring we even packed goat’s milk soap in our vacation suitcase just to be sure it was always available.

  16. Betty P

    I don’t see a star to vote but my vote is yes. I’m 83 and have had leg cramps for many years, many times 3 and 4 times a night, nothing helped. Then I heard about the soap. Have not had night cramps for over a year. When I told my Dr. he said he was just going to tell me to try soap and told me about this web site.

  17. Otis D.

    I’ve read a number of your articles about soap under the bottom sheet but I’ve never noticed you mention if there is a particular type or brand of soap that works best. I guess my “scientific mind” has been attracted by this home remedy. Will any type of soap work?

  18. Barbara Liposchak

    I just read another report for soap under the sheet remedy for restless leg syndrone. I tried it 2 years ago and it didn’t work. Then I read somewhere that it has to be pure soap, not antibacterial, lotion type soap or deodorant type soap. Pure soap, like Ivory. So I thought, Okay, I’ll give this dumb idea another try. I got 2 bars of Ivory, rubbed them all over my mattress pad at the end of my bed, and then left the 2 bars under the sheet. Surprise!! I havn’t had one night of restless legs in many months. It worked the very first night. I even put it in my bed in the camper. I used to take Klonopin to control it, among other drugs and now I use the Ivory only. One less drug, and not a twitch from the legs. So maybe it does have to be pure soap. Those of you who tried other soaps and it didn’t work, try any pure soap. I am thrilled with how it works. It makes no sense to me, but I know it works and that’s all I care about!! Good luck to those who try pure soap. Rest easy, Barb

  19. DK

    Amazing cure! Since I started sleeping with ivory soap (change about every 3 months; my legs remind me) for leg cramps, I have not taken a Motrin since. This is fantastic and why we seek natural remedies before OTC or prescription meds whenever possible!

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