Sleep Disturbance & Restless Legs Syndrome


Sleep disturbances are common in ME/CFS and unrefreshing sleep is a key diagnostic symptom. In this comprehensive leaflet we examine sleep issues and consider a variety of treatments that could contribute to a more comfortable sleep.

Failing to have a good night’s sleep isn’t just frustrating – it can have a major effect on all aspects of your health. With various types of sleep disturbance being very common in ME/CFS, this is one aspect of the illness that cannot be ignored. Fortunately, there are a number of simple self-help solutions that can often be of help and, in some cases, drug treatments have a role to play.

Topics discussed in this leaflet, include: Why do we need to sleep and how much sleep do we need? What happens during sleep and how does this change in M.E.? What types of sleep disturbance commonly occur in M.E.? How should sleep disturbances be investigated? How should sleep disorders be managed in M.E.? Self-help sleep arrangements, Over-the-counter remedies, Prescription-only drugs, Circadin – a prolonged release preparation of Melatonin, Restless Legs Syndrome – What it is and how it can be treated?

Telephone Helpline

The ME Association telephone helpline – ME Connect – is available every day of the year, during the hours of 10am-12noon, 2pm-4pm and 7pm-9pm. Please phone: 0344 576 5326 if you have any questions or would simply like to talk to someone who is there to listen.

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