Parkinson's, Restless Legs & Movement Disorder Specialists, PLLC
Subhashie Wijemanne, MD
Movement Disorder Specialist located in Austin, TX
Tremors aren’t usually life-threatening, but they can hinder daily functioning in some cases. These involuntary, rhythmic movements happen most often in the hands but can also show up in the head, arms, vocal cords, torso, and legs. Board-certified neurologist Subhashie Wijemanne, MD, offers evaluations and treatment for tremors at her practice Parkinson’s, Restless Legs & Movement Disorders Specialists, PLLC, in Austin, Texas. Call today for an appointment or book online if you’re bothered by tremors.
When should I seek medical care for a tremor?
Tremors are any rhythmic, involuntary motions. If you find this shaking in your hands, arms, head, legs, or torso bothersome and persistent, you’ll benefit from a medical evaluation.
Other signs that you could benefit from treatment for tremors include:
- Shaky voice
- Problems holding writing instruments to write or draw
- Trouble holding and controlling eating utensils or tools
If you find your tremors interfere with daily tasks or work, it’s time to see a specialist like Dr. Wijemanne.
What causes tremors?
Tremors can occasionally occur due to intense stress or strong emotions. Some types of tremors are inherited. But most tremors have no known cause.
Tremors result when there’s a problem in the deep part of the brain that controls movements. Tremors can be associated with specific neurological conditions, including:
- Multiple sclerosis (MS)
- Stroke and traumatic brain injury
- Neurodegenerative diseases affecting parts of the brain (like Parkinson’s disease)
Tremors don’t always result from a neurological cause. Other possible reasons for tremors include:
- Medications, including stimulants, corticosteroids, and asthma medicines
- Alcohol abuse or withdrawal
- Liver or kidney failure
People who have severe anxiety or who suffer from panic attacks can also suffer tremors.
What is essential tremor?
Essential tremor is one of the most common movement disorders. This tremor can be mild and remain stable for years. Usually, it appears on both sides of the body but is usually noticed in the dominant hand.
Essential tremor happens in both hands and arms, both during movement and while standing still. You can also develop a head tremor and a quivering sound to the voice. Essential tremor can result in compromised writing, drinking from a cup, or using tools or a computer.
How are tremors treated?
The treatment for tremors depends on the cause. If there’s a known underlying condition, like an overactive thyroid, treating that issue can stop the tremors. In many cases of tremors, however, there’s no cure.
Some tremors can be controlled with certain prescription medications and lifestyle changes, like reducing caffeine consumption. Physical and occupational therapy can help you learn how to function despite tremors. Surgery, including deep brain stimulation, can be necessary in some cases of severe tremors.
If you’re bothered by tremors, seek a consultation at Parkinson’s, Restless Legs & Movement Disorders Specialists, PLLC. Call the office or use the online tool to schedule.