Shaking - self-care
A tremor is a type of shaking in your body. Most tremors are in the hands and arms. But they may affect any body part, even your head or voice.
For many people with a tremor, the cause is not found. Some types of tremors run in families. A tremor may also be part of a long-term brain or nerve disorder.
Some medicines can cause tremors. Talk with your health care provider about stopping a medicine that may be causing your tremor. Your health care provider may lower your dosage or switch you to another medicine. Do not change or stop any medicine before you talk with your provider.
You may not need treatment for your tremor unless it interferes with your daily life or is embarrassing for you.
Most tremors become worse when you are tired.
Stress and anxiety can also make your tremor worse. These things may lower your stress level:
Alcohol use can also cause tremors. If it is the cause of your tremors, seek treatment and support. Your health care provider can help you find a treatment program that may help you stop drinking.
Tremors can worsen over time. They may begin to interfere with your ability to do your daily activities. To help in your day-to-day:
Your health care provider may prescribe medicines to relieve your tremor symptoms. How well any medicine works may depend on your body and the cause of your tremor.
Some of these medicines have side effects. Tell your health care provider if you have these symptoms or any other symptoms you are concerned about:
Call your health care provider if:
Deuschl G, Raethjen J, Hellriegel H, Elble R. Treatment of patients with essential tremor. Lancet Neurol. 2011;10:148-61.
Jankovic J. Movement disorders. In: Daroff RB, Fenichel GM, Jankovic J, Mazziotta JC, eds. Bradley's Neurology in Clinical Practice. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2012:chap 71.
Lang AE. Other movement disorders. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman's Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2011:chap 417.
Updated by: Joseph V. Campellone, M.D., Division of Neurology, Cooper University Hospital, Camden, NJ. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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