What You Need To know About Shaky Hands

Shaky hands are frequently linked with older persons. However, many young people suffer from health disorders that have a substantial influence on their everyday life, ranging from simple tasks like writing to more complex activities. Hand tremor is a medical term for involuntary shaking of the hands.

According to a study, hand tremor is common among people older than 65. However, young individuals affected by this condition often find it puzzling and concerning, as it is not widely discussed.

Without further ado, here is what you need to know about hand tremors.

What is a hand tremor?

Hand tremor is a neurological disorder that involves involuntary, rhythmic muscular contractions, resulting in shaking movements in one or both hands.

Everyone experiences a little tremor when moving or keeping a specific position. They are rarely noticeable.

Hand tremors become more evident when a person holds their hands out straight in front of them, or when they are agitated or anxious.

These movements are usually not life-threatening, but they can suggest underlying medical problems. Tremors develop when there is an issue with the areas of the brain that control movement.

Tremors can affect several regions of the body, including the hands, head, arms, legs, and voice box.

What causes hand tremor?

The specific reason of hand tremor remains unknown. Research suggests that hand tremors are associated with moderate cerebellar degeneration. This suggests that the area of the brain that regulates movement coordination is deteriorating.

There are also other causes of hand tremors which include:

  • Genetic factor: In more than half of the cases of hand tremor, study shows that genetics may play a role in its development. This means that children of an affected individual will have a 50% chance of also developing the disorder.
  • Neurological disorders: Several neurological diseases can lead to shaky hands. Parkinson’s disease is majorly linked to hand tremors as about 75% of people with PD have tremors. Others include stroke, Traumatic brain injury, and dystonia.
  • Certain medicines like antiepileptics, antivirals, and antibiotics can also play a role in the development of hand tremors.
  • Alcohol misuse and withdrawal.

What are the symptoms of hand tremor?

Some common symptoms of hand tremor include:

  • Rhythmic shaking of the hands.
  • Difficulty with tasks requiring precision, like buttoning a shirt or writing or drawing.
  • Problems holding and controlling utensils, tools, or other items.
  • Handwriting may become shaky, small, or hard to read.

How is hand tremor treated?

There is no cure for most tremors, however, there are available treatment options.

These treatments are determined by the cause of your hand tremor.

  • Treating underlying conditions: If the hand tremor has been confirmed to be caused by a condition, the tremor can then be treated/managed by treating it appropriately.
  • Lifestyle changes: Several lifestyle changes may help to reduce hand tremors. So avoid stimulants, caffeine, and excess alcohol intake.
  • Psychological techniques: People who experience tremors due to anxiety or panic attacks may benefit from practicing relaxation techniques, such as mindfulness and breathing exercises.
  • Switching medications: A person who experiences tremors while taking a medication should report the side effects to their  doctor. So the  doctor can adjust the dosage or the drug or change the drug totally.
  • Physical therapy: Exercises that can help improve muscle control and coordination can be done.

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