Nearly everyone has experienced a twitch in their eyelid or muscle spasm in an extremity at some time or another. Most of these movements are completely normal and are often due to overuse of muscles, fatigue or dehydration. But for some, involuntary muscle spasms or other movements indicate a deeper problem. In fact, medically classified movement disorders are extremely common and include more than 30 different categories.
From essential tremors, the most common movement disorder that affects approximately five million people in the U.S. today, to the much less common Wilson’s disease that occurs in one in every 30,000 people, there is a myriad of other conditions that fall under the umbrella of movement disorders.
So What Are They?
In the simplest terms, movement disorders are nervous system or neurological conditions that cause abnormal increased movements or conversely, reduced or slowed movements. These movements can be voluntary or involuntary in nature and just as balance disorders can affect daily activities such as walking or simple projects or tasks, the same is true for movement disorders. Symptoms of movement disorders vary as widely as the number of movement disorders and often change or fluctuate. The severity of symptoms can be affected by anxiety, medications, stress, fatigue and more.
Diagnosis and Treatment Options
As with most medical conditions, diagnosis of a movement disorder typically starts with taking a family history, review of symptoms, a physical exam and any number of tests. Your doctor will be well-versed in what tests are necessary to achieve a proper diagnosis. While there are no “cures” for movement disorders, there are several treatment options including some that reduce or reverse the symptoms in a safe, effective and drug-free manner.
A Functional Approach to Treating Movement Disorders
As more and more patients seek care that does not rely on drug therapies, functional medicine doctors are answering the call. Experts in the connection between the brain and nervous system, Chiropractic Neurologists believe in a whole-body approach to treatment. By designing personalized care plans that seek to reestablish normal movement patterns, your Chiropractic Neurologist can help you reverse the symptoms of movement disorders by retraining the brain through chiropractic care, physical rehabilitation and neurological exercises … all without drugs or surgeries.
And just as the results are promising, so too are the advances in the awareness around movement disorders. In recent years, there has been enormous growth in both new diagnostic information and non-invasive treatments, as well as a greater understanding of impaired motor control. The Movement Disorder Society was founded for the purpose of sharing this information with physicians and patients and have a variety of resources available on their website.
At Georgia Chiropractic Neurology Center, our team of Doctors is highly trained in the treatment of patients of all ages who suffer from a variety of movement disorders. If you or a loved one would like to learn more about how Chiropractic Neurology can help you, please contact us today.