If you think you have Essential Tremor, it can change your life forever. Here is a guide to everything you need to know about this condition.
Unsurprisingly, the most noticeable of the essential tremor symptoms is the tremor itself. It is categorized by a shaking in the hands and head, unlike Parkinson’s which usually only occurs in the hands.
Essential Tremor symptoms may also include a trembling in the voice and in the legs in extreme cases. It can seriously affect a person’s life and can limit their daily activities; causing them to potentially even need to give up work.
Essential Tremor is caused by abnormal electrical brain activity in the thalamus; an area of the lower brain which controls motor and sensory functions. It is frequently a hereditary fault. Over half of Essential Tremor patients stated that a relative had tremors at some point in their life. The term “essential” in medicine means that there is no known cause.
It is also frequently found in older people. Essential Tremors can occur at any time in a person’s life but they will be more likely to develop when the patient is over 40 years of age.
There are luckily a number of ways to treat Essential Tremor. The first and easiest route is to make some lifestyle changes. As difficult as it might be initially, one of the first things you should do is give up caffeine. It, unfortunately, aggravates the tremors and can make them even worse. Switch to decaf or lighter alternatives like fruit and herbal teas.
Many people have also found improvement in their tremors through the use of mindfulness techniques like meditation and light exercise like yoga. Meditation and breathing techniques have helped many a patient regain some sort of control over their tremors which allows them to continue their life relatively normally. If you take up yoga, you will also have the double benefit of improving your muscles while releasing dopamine into your system to make yourself happier and ready to take on the world.
If you are having no luck with natural remedies, perhaps a course of medication might be for you. Your doctor may have you try beta-blockers, anti-seizure medication, or even Botox in the hunt to find something to help alleviate your symptoms.
Is the medication proving ineffective? For extreme cases of Essential Tremors, there are surgical treatments. There is an incisionless surgical technique which uses an MRI scanner with focused ultrasound waves to treat the thalamus – that faulty part of your brain. This can frequently help to lessen the tremors and make life a whole lot easier for those patients who choose to undergo this procedure. What’s more, because it does not require incisions, the recovery time is nice and quick so you can return to your life as quickly as possible.
No matter what stage your Essential Tremors are at, there will hopefully be some way to relieve your discomfort. Speak to your doctor today!