Medical Questions > Mental Health > Anxiety and Stress Forum

head tremors induced by stress and anxiety (Page 1)

Must Read
Learn how doctors clinically diagnose one of twelve kinds of anxiety disorders...and which doctors you should see for an anxiety diagnosis....
Anxiety disorders can affect anyone. But do you know the common signs and symptoms of anxiety disorders? Learn more now....
Anxiety is a normal, healthy emotion when experienced during specific moments. But do you know the signs that anxiety has gotten out of control? Read more here...
I am a 32 year-old female, who has been experiencing occasional head tremors since April 12, 2009. It started after a weekend full of stressful and exhausting wedding events in my role as Maid of Honor. The first episode occurred at the end of an orgasm when my teeth began to chatter uncontrollably, which was shortly followed by my first head tremors. Since then, the tremors have been consistently "no-no" head movements and a few inconsistent full body tremors (2-3 times). I am always conscious when the tremors occur and they don't last more than 5 seconds. I have noticed that sometimes I will daze off and the tremors will begin, however there have been a few instances where the dazes did not precede the tremors. In my opinion, the tremors are consistently preceded by stress and anxiety.

My immediate tests included: a CT scan with no contrast, MRI, MRA with contrast, blood work, EKG and EEG. All of my test results were normal and a diagnosis given by a neurologist was inconclusive. I do have a history of self-diagnosed anxiety where I get heart palpitations, shaky hands, lump in the throat and chest tightening when I am nervous about something. In addition, I worry about various things in life consistently, exhibit qualities of a perfectionist, easily stress out and am always worried about and focus on worst case scenarios, which has affected sleep, caused stress and anxiety, and has disabled me in certain instances. However, I have never experienced tremors prior to April 12. The only medication I was on at the time, where I did miss a couple of doses, was Amoxicillin- Clavulanate for a finger abscess and began taking it a week prior to the first tremor episode. In addition, I was an occasional coffee drinker averaging no more than one cup of coffee a day until I was advised to eliminate caffeine. Also, I am a non-smoker, occasional drinker(3-4 times per month), and I haven't used any dietary supplements/vitamins other than protein powder. I have researched a few sites online regarding tremors but I'm still uncertain about the next steps I should take. I appreciate any professional advice and/or feedback from others who have experienced similar symptoms. Thank you.
Did you find this post helpful?
First Helper AntoineArch
|

User Profile
replied May 24th, 2009
Great description - thorough and intelligent - thanks. This must be a big worry for you. The first steps you took were right - neurologist and suite of diagnostic tests. At this stage - there results suggest no proven neurological issues - tho keep your neurologist as a backup if things get worse.

You know from your Google searches that there are many physical correlates to stress and anxiety. You have described these. The head tremors (neural responses) are certainly extreme physical reactions. If the tremors ARE stress related, then the issue is to deal with the stress. Poor sleep habits and sleep deprivation (from stress, or anxiety, or over-work or whatever) can cause significant physical responses. So re-arrange your sleep pattern. Look at two of my Ezine articles for details (http://ezinearticles.com/?Job-Worries,-Sl eeplessness,-and-Work-Stress&id=2004284 ).

I am assuming yuo have a physician who looks after your health. Start collecting data on the tremors - use the ABC model. Antecedent - Behavior - Consequence. Describe what happened before the tremor, during, and after. Be specific. Take good notes. This strategy gives us something positive to do about our overt and exaggerated physical reactions and often provides a key to the problem.

Your other social behavior sounds great. I agree re the caffeine reduction. Also think about your pre-sleep food and drink intake and behavior. At the end of the day, if you have an ongoing stress-related physical reaction that worries you, find yourself a good therapist, someone who is good at dealing with stress and anxiety. Much of the problem with these conditions is in our head - how we talk to ourselves (check out this article http://ezinearticles.com/?Get-Rid-of-Negat ive-Self-Talk-and-Relieve-Workplace-Stress &id=1764588 ).

From reading your well-written description I have confidence that you can find good solutions to the problem.

BEst wishes
Dr Jeff
http://www.drjeffbailey.com






|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 4th, 2010
Head Tremors
Hi ,you are not alone on this, i am 34 years old and suffer Anxiety and have since the age 18,i had my 4th child 4 months ago and I have been getting the same tremors in my head since the birth of my baby girl. I am the same as you i dont smoke i have a coffee a day, and drink on occasions,also dont take vitamins.Im not sure how this has happened to me, i have been so depressed(crying most days) over this cause i have no control.I am going to a doctor this week and hoping that there is something that can be done. If it is due to stress then im not sure what to do.Saw your post and has made me not feel alone.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied September 16th, 2011
I was wondering how your tremor is, I am 39 and suffe from the same thing.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 20th, 2010
Hi to both of you. I''m 54 - always been in great health. My mother had benign essential tremor, and aside from that, lived a healthy life up until about a month before her death from congestive heart failure. She was 90 years old when she died and the tremor bothered her for about 15 years but wasn''t extremely serious. I''ve also noticed signs of a head tremor at times during the last 15 years or so of my life - but maybe just for a few seconds, and only maybe 12 dozen times at that. But last summer (when I was 53), after an exhausting and stress-producing experience of moving and dealing with some "toxic" people - an ex and a crazy house-mate, the tremor came on strong again and has gotten increasingly more noticeable and bothersome during the past 9 months.

I do have a lot of anxiety, mostly due to financial worries and I am depressed. The tremors are worse apparently, when I am tired, sleep-deprived or emotionally upset. In fact, every-day type stress-producing events - such as watching the news - can also make it worse. Now I''m also feeling very fatigued on top of that - much more than I ever had before.

I see that the anxiety factor is something all three of us seem to share in common.

I don''t have health insurance right now so I''m doing what I can until I can see a doctor. I''ve read that inflammation can be a factor so I''m trying to eat better foods - less sugar, caffeine, no junk food - just organic vegetables, leaner meats, whole grains, herbal teas, etc.

I am wondering if either of you, or anyone reading this, has found other helpful information about head tremors? I have also heard that hyperbaric oxygen therapy may help, although I''m sure it is very expensive.

THANKS.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 20th, 2010
Hi,went to my doctor and yes i have essential tremor,my mother had essential tremor aswell i hear it is hereditry. had bloods done,they came back normal.Tested thyroid aswell all clear. Just had iron test done the other day cause i am drained dealing with the weight of dealing with this. waiting for result.I am now taking stjohns wort which i use to take a few years ago to try and ease my Anxiety,it worked well for me then but not sure why i stopped taking it.(May have been cause i was pregnant)Anyway im only on my second day of having stjohns wort so havent felt any change yet.Hoping that if i try & help my anxiety my tremor may hopefuly settle.(Fingers crossed!)If stjohns wort doesnt help there are other alternatives that the doctor may need to prescribe. Want to give this a go first though.The main reason is why do we get it??(essential tremor)
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 23rd, 2010
I got essential tremor in my head for my 21st b-day. it really sucks. At 26 i found my miracle drug, primidone, however after a week the tremors came back and slowly get stronger. im 34 now and i think the meds are useless, yet packed with side effects. anyone here have constant pressure in their head? i do, and the more pressure, the worse the tremors. no pressure and the tremors slow, of course just temporarily.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 26th, 2010
Yes i do have pressure in my head, especially at the back from the ears to right down the neck.By the way i got my results from my blood test for iron levels and they were low, reading of 26.Im taking iron tablets with vitamin c now and will see how that goes.Least i know why i was so tired all the time and feeling faint at times.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 28th, 2010
@ree4tim: Have the iron tablets helped? i had an iron deficiency when i was younger, before the tremors.
I''m 27, and have had head tremors for about two years and it''s getting worse.. I''ve been to a neurologist and had thyroid testing, with no abnormalities. when i don''t drink caffeine nothing changes, i still have the tremors.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 29th, 2010
Hi, i feel that i am less drained and not feeling faint like i was before taking the iron tablets.I find that when i have a tremor my muscles in the back of my neck tighten and my jaw clenches tight and my breathing pattern changes.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied June 4th, 2010
Essential Tremor
I have had essential tremor in my hands and head for as long as I can remember (which is when I was about 3 years old). Anxiety definately has made it worse at times in my life but as soon as the stressful situation eased the tremor went back to "normal". It hasn't changed my whole life but anxiety is definately an issue at times. I also feel like my head is REALLY heavy at times, especially in the brain stem area but that has always been there as well. For the most part it doesn't affect me and I am used to it. I am always watching to see if it gets worse though as I am in my late 30's now and have had it my whole life. I wonder at times if my chances of getting other neurological disorders are increased because of my prolonged experience with essential tremor but I believe the research is mixed on that. I don't take any medication for it.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied August 27th, 2010
I am 37 year old male with head tremors. I have had them off and on for the past 5yrs. I am a very athletic person who exercises horses and lives on a tree farm so i am always active. I have noticed that when i am inactive is when my head tremors are more frequent. I also tend to get them when i go into a store and have to wait for the cashier with people around??? I have the small nods that look like I am motioning no. If i think anyone is noticing or i see someone looking at me they get worse. I have been taken a benzodiazapam for anxiety for 15 yrs. i am on a low dose and it does help with anxiety and the tremors. I rarely drink, i do not do drugs but i do smoke cigarettes and an occasional joint. I was beginning to think I am having early symptoms of Parkinsons but was told by my therapist that it is due to a type of social anxiety and phobia. It is so embarassing when it happens. I do occasionally get it alone but it mostly occurs in public. I eat well, i take a daily supplement and regard myself as healthier and more fit than most if not all of my friends. I just thought i would post this after reading the other posts. I have had bouts of agoraphobia as well. My self diagnosis is that my head tremors are related to anxiety.???
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied September 13th, 2010
Head Tremors
I also suffer from head tremors (no-no motion), I am a 23 year old female, I have had them since I was around 12 years old. I have social anxiety and I remember first getting the head tremors when I had to keep my head still for a school picture and again when giving a presentation. I have tried many different medications, including inderal and SSRIs, valium, xanax..etc but klonopin is the only one that makes the tremors go away completely with a low dose (I use as needed for public speaking, not everyday for fear of tolerance.) It's hard to deal with, I also get the head tremors if I am standing around not moving or doing anything with other people I don't know around. I know if I am stressed I even get them driving. Mine have not gone away or decreased over the years. My neurologist said it's some kind of tremor that isn't medically an issue. I have heard of people getting botox in the muscles that control the tremor also!
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied September 13th, 2010
Head Tremors
I also suffer from head tremors (no-no motion), I am a 23 year old female, I have had them since I was around 12 years old. I have social anxiety and I remember first getting the head tremors when I had to keep my head still for a school picture and again when giving a presentation. I have tried many different medications, including inderal and SSRIs, valium, xanax..etc but klonopin is the only one that makes the tremors go away completely with a low dose (I use as needed for public speaking, not everyday for fear of tolerance.) It's hard to deal with, I also get the head tremors if I am standing around not moving or doing anything with other people I don't know around. I know if I am stressed I even get them driving. Mine have not gone away or decreased over the years. My neurologist said it's some kind of tremor that isn't medically an issue. I have heard of people getting botox in the muscles that control the tremor also!
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied September 23rd, 2010
What is causing my essential head tremors?
I am 60, and have had head tremors for about 5 years now. Yes, there is stress in my life, but I never reacted with tremors until now. It's depressing me, and making me anti social. I know people notice it, and try to keep my head moving around, just kind of looking around myself, to make the tremors less noticeable. I don't have health insurance, and I'm sure the clinic I go to will not refer me to a neurologist. Tense situations and anger aggravates it to the point of absolutely uncontrollable head tremors. The other day, after a really bad encounter at work, I just sat at my computer and massaged the muscles in my neck. After a few minutes I noticed this reduced the tremors dramatically. I'm assuming the endorphines released by the massaging probably caused the reduction in tremors. When I'm tense, it's like my neck, jaw, head, shoulders and back are turning into iron. I've tried checking my posture. Sometimes if I position my head tilted slightly back, the tremors are less. But they are constant now, not a day goes by when I'm not obsessing about them. I haven't spoken to anyone about this problem for fear of looking like a crackpot or hypochondriac. I take lorazepam for panic disorder, and have been on it for nearly 30 years. I'm wondering if all those years on the medication hasn't caused some kind of permanent damage. I wish to god there were an answer. Knowing I'm not alone doesn't really make me feel any better.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied January 29th, 2012
I was also on lorazipan. It stopped working. I got on klonopin and helped a great deal. Also, keeping my stress levels down and taking valarian root helps. Good luck
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied April 3rd, 2012
I found that if I touch my face, like my chin or my earlobe, while talking to someone it makes the tremors go away at that time. I take Xanax almost daily to avoid the embarrassment of my shaky head. I hate being dependent benzos, but it's better than drinking alcohol everyday. Plus alcohol consumption is only a temporary fix which makes it worse when it wares off.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied November 28th, 2010
possibly a head tremor
I'm not quite sure that I had a head tremor, but that's what my research has brought me to. For about 6 years now, I've had problems with orthostatic hypotension. It's only happened a handful of times though. When I stand up my mouth and arms go numb and I get really weak and dizzy. I am consious the entire 5 or so seconds that this lasts. A few of the times, I actually ended up in the floor because my legs were so weak, but I know what is happening and I can usually ease myself to the floor. Today was different. Once I realized what was happening, I tried to ease myself to the floor and my head started shaking. I don't know what else it could have been besides a tremor. Although I was worried before that my orthostatic hypotension could have been seizures. If anyone has any information about my experiences please reply.

Thanks
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied January 31st, 2011
Head and Hand Tremors
I get mild head tremors when I'm stressed or irritated and I also have a right hand tremor that occurs when I move my hand a certain way or at rest. They seem to have started since I'm been on two different drugs for Bipolar Disorder that I was told could cause tremors. I also have low thyroid. I am still worried, however, that I may have early Parkinson's. I am 49 years old. If these tremors are medication related, are they reversible?
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied February 2nd, 2011
I've always called them "brain jumps". It feels like my brain takes a leap in my head...sometimes a little one and sometimes a bigger one. I hate them! I first noticed them after I had my second son via c-section back in July 2007. He was only a couple weeks old and I was sitting on the couch watching tv and my brain jumped. I delt with them on and off for a year before I finally went to the doctor. He arranged a MRI, but without contrast. It came back normal but did say that I had mild thickening of the sinuses. I have always felt like that MRI was inaccurate since they didn't use contrast. Sad Anyway, I just dealt with them as they came, and tried to not get to stresed about them and eventually I noticed they subsided for a long time. However, they are back now along with a constant pressure in my head. I'm going through some really bad anxiety at the moment and am on my second dose of Zoloft (I hope it works). So, maybe that is why they are back...because of all the panic and anxiety I've been dealing with. I"m so sick of feeling this way!
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied February 2nd, 2011
Oh, I'm 33 btw.
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied February 15th, 2011
Essential Tremor in Head
I have had a head tremor for 11 years. They started when I was pregnant with my daughter and I was working in a stressful job position. I have suffered from anxiety and depression for the last twenty years and have been on antidepressants for as long. I was diagnosed with Essential Tremor about 7 years ago and they told me it was hereditary. I know of noone on my family who has had this. I often wonder if it is from the antidpressants. I now see a Dr who is trying Botox for the head tremor. I have had one round and it does not seem to be helping. We will keep upping the dose and maybe something will change. Has anyone had surgery to help with tremors? Does it work?
Thanks
|
Did you find this post helpful?

replied October 22nd, 2011
anxiety and
Hello everyone I am a 26 year old female and I have social anxiety but maybe other types as well. I have been on several different medications over the course of five years and non of them seem to really work. The only one that I thought was useful that I stuck with is a type of Xanax. I don't like the feeling that it gives me so I only take it as needed in high pressure situations but the bad part of that is that sometimes I don't know when that situations would come up and its too late. If I am put in a situation where I am on the spot than thats were all my symptoms begin I start shaking from head to toe and can not calm myself down unless I remove myself from that situation. In many cases it just feels very devastating when you can't control your own body. Also I have notices that for the past few years my head seems to trample a little bit and when I am in that extreme anxious situation than it goes completely out of control. Also when I go to bed and I feel relaxed and I put my head on the pillow is still feels like its trembling. I guess I dont know what my next step should be and was wondering if anyone has experienced anything like that? I would greatly appreciate any feedback.
|
Did you find this post helpful?
12 >>
DISCLAIMER: "Ask a Doctor" questions are answered by certified physicians and other medical professionals. For more information about experts participating in the "Ask a Doctor" Network, please visit our medical experts page. You may also visit our Anxiety and Stress , for moderated patient to patient support and information.

The information provided on eHealth Forum is designed to improve, not replace, the relationship between a patient and his/her own physician. Personal consultation(s) with a qualified medical professional is the proper means for diagnosing any medical condition.