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Soap in Bed Calms Restless Legs

Putting a bar of soap under the bottom sheet may keep restless legs from acting up.
Soap in Bed Calms Restless Legs
Bar soap, nighttime leg cramps, restless legs syndrome

Q. I have been using Bed Soap in my bed for five years to manage my restless legs syndrome (RLS). I truly cannot live without it.  I even travel with a bar I can use in hotel rooms.

I’ve given Bed Soap to people with chronic leg cramps or RLS, and they are amazed at how quickly it works! Bed Soap is a great gift, but it is also a gift to me. I was suffering with RLS and took a chance. I love this Bed Soap. I keep a bar on the couch too.

A. Not everyone gets benefit from soap, but those who do are often as enthusiastic as you are. We are delighted that you really like The People’s Pharmacy Bed Soap bars. They are thinner, longer and wider than the average bar of soap. They also have a light lavender fragrance, which may help some people fall asleep faster.

Most health professionals assume this is due to a placebo effect, but an anesthesiologist reported in the medical literature that the fragrance in soap does appear to ease muscle cramps (Journal of Multidisciplinary Healthcare, Sept. 2008).

Other Reports

Here is what other readers have reported:

“I have had RLS for years. When I read this, well, I had to try it. It worked. I have had the soap under my sheet for about two months and it works. I won’t stop using it because I’m scared of hurting again. Thanks to who ever stated this.” Patsy

Some people find the remedy ridiculous-and how could we blame them-but are won over when they try it, as SS was:

“I went to bed about 11:00 p.m. and lay there for about an hour. My legs started acting up really bad (have had restless legs for about 20 years), so I got up and got back on the internet to look up home remedies for restless legs.

“I read an article about using soap and I thought it was a crazy idea, I kid you not. I went upstairs and got out a sock and put the bar of soap inside the sock and instantly my legs started to calm down.

“I also recommend taking a very hot bath with hand soap (not shower gel) and sitting in the water for about 10 minutes. When you use the hand soap in a sock, change it every so often because I think as time goes by it loses its effectiveness.”

 The Placebo Effect?

Many health professionals assume that soap under the bottom sheet must be a placebo effect. Here is a message from S.R.B that challenges that assumption:

“I put a bar of soap under my husband’s sheets without his knowledge. It worked. So this proves that it is not all psychosomatic.

“When he saw the soap he couldn’t believe it and it probably wouldn’t have worked if he had known it.”

Here are links to learn more about Bed Soap and Leg Soap, should you prefer something designed specifically with this concept in mind. Some people report that Ivory works. Others sing the praises of Irish Spring. Many find the small bar of hotel soap they bring home also does the job.

Please let us know about your soap story. We would like to know if it works or if it fails. Please give us the straight scoop.

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.” .
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