Restless muscles make it difficult to sleep. Is this common?

Hello. I'm a newbie. So glad to find this very helpful and informative group! Took my first dose of Dilacort (Prednasone) 15mg yesterday and have just taken my second dose this morning. Last night I woke at around 3.30 am with a feeling of restlessness passing in waves through my muscles. Thank goodness not painful as before, but very unpleasant. Can only describe it as an impulse to wrythe or shudder. It woud not let me relax or sleep so I spent two hours sitting up in bed and reading this site on my tablet. This was a great comfort and help. The feeling did eventually subside and I slept a bit, but now it is coming back. Can anyone tell me if they have had this feeling, and if so, does it pass?

17 Replies

  • Hi - I had something similar which people call Restless Leg Syndrome. I found that taking Magnesium really helps- I take 800mg (2x400 capsules or tabs) when I go to bed, and I've never had a problem since. Don't think it would do any harm to try?

  • With my PMR work up, neurologist additionally diagnosed Restless Leg Syndrome. It may be due to anemia. Although my Hmg and Hct were normal, my iron levels were very low. Currently taking supplemental iron every day. I think I suffered from low iron levels a long time before diagnosed. I wonder if the stress triggered PMR as I did not have any other physical or emotional stressors.

  • Thanks Lchristop10. I don't hink I am anaemic as have had blood tests, but will look into iron supplements if the symptoms persist.

  • Thanks very much Venezia1. Yes, it sounds like Restless Leg Syndrome. Very interesting that taking magnesium helped you. I saw one suggestion that eating bananas is also a good way of getting Magnesium. I'll investigate further and try. Since writing that post I've found quite a number of people saying that being jittery is a common result of taking the Prednisone too. I'm reassured thanks to you and all the good people here.

  • Hello,

    I got this when I first started Pred. It wore off as my body got used to it.

  • Thanks so much for your very encouraging comment SnazzyD.

  • I have had restless legs for years now x sleep doesn't come easy even with sleeping tablets but when I started taking magnesium citrate as I couldn't tolerate the others x and it did help a lot but me been clever thought oh I will stop and I am back to square one x so I am off to holland and Barrett tomorrow for new bottle and will just stay in them xx

  • Thanks Woodiesmum. I'll try Magnesium Citrate if this hepped up feeling doesn't stop waking me. Glad you found it works for you.

  • I have struggled with this issue for years, well before PMR...

    I have learned that, tea, cola, medication...regardless of the source, causes extreme muscle restlessness in the night.

    I do my best to avoid all caffeine after noon.

    When the muscles wake me at night, I found that a cup of warm milk (with vanilla and a bit of splenda) helps me go back to sleep. Also paracetamol /tylenol helps, and occasionally a pain pill gives relief.

    The doc wanted to give me another drug to treat the restless legs, but I simply could not abide that its warm milk for me.

    Regards, Jerri

  • Thanks Purplecrow. (I'm Purple Owl. My website is!) Yes, this over-hepped-up feeling is just like being over-caffeinated. Unfortunately I'm a coffeeholic - though can't currently be suffering from too much caffeine, as I've been off coffee since this painful thing struck me a couple of weeks ago. Come to think of it, I imagine starting the Prednisolone has flooded my system instead with the adrenaline replacement it supplies. When I venture out again I'll be getting some decaffeinated coffee. Thanks for the tip about the milk. In the past I've found a bowl of porridge with hot milk is a good sleeping tablet replacement too. Don't like to take sleeping tablets, though pain killers have been a godsend these past days when the PMR struck.

  • "pain killers have been a godsend these past days when the PMR struck."

    That's unusual - most people find pain killers do nothing for PMR pain...

  • Interesting PMRpro. It's only a couple of weeks ago but already I can't remember the exact effect of the various pain killers I was given before diagnosis. Come to think of it though, you're right. They didn't really do much good. Ibuprofen helped a tiny bit and I believe it has an anti-inflammatory ingredient. I only had one dose of that, then the doctor put me on a non steroid anti-inflammatory for a week. That too was little help. Meanwhile I had hunted high and low on the net and found PMR was the only thing that fitted all my symptoms. Luckily doctor agreed and I had very high white blood corpuscle counts on blood tests, so am now on my third day of steroids. So far pain gone and I only have these these night jitters. Waking 3.30 nightly unable to lie still.

  • On and off Pred, I have restless legs. Laugh if you will, but, on another forum, I read about putting a bar of soap between the fitted sheet and duvet. It DOES work! Last night, I had RL again, and by rubbing my feet, for a few secs, I had relief.

  • Thanks karools16, I'm not going to laugh at any helpful suggestion! Will try if this continues.

  • Whenever my ferritin (iron stores) level is low I get restless legs syndrome. As it improves so do my legs. It's one of the symptoms of iron-deficiency anaemia.

  • I was told to take a capsule of minerals which would cover whatever is missing in your diet whether it be magnesium or iron.

  • Multi minerals on my shopping list. Thanks!

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