STRESS

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STRESS

Postby SCOTT on September 20th, 2002, 9:42 am

HOW MANY THINK STRESS AND CONSTANT WORRY IN GENERAL CAUSES OR CAUSED YOUR TWITCHES...?
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Postby JimK on September 20th, 2002, 9:48 am

I notice that alot of posts mention they are people with anxiety attacks/issues or were under tremendous amounts of stress when their symptoms started. I had tons of work & personal stress when mine started.

We should start a poll.
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STRESS

Postby CONCRETE on September 20th, 2002, 9:53 am

MY DR. CLAIMS LONG TERM STRESS-MANY MONTHS CAN CAUSE BRAIN TO HAVE CHANGES . SAID SSRI CAN HELP.
TOLD ME HE BELIEVS BRAIN REACTS TO STRESS AND SENDS MESSAGE TO MUSCLE FIBERS.
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Postby Arron on September 20th, 2002, 10:06 am

nope... BFS ain't caused "by" stress. Stress is certainly involved but it ain't "caused" by it. People stress over it (twitches, jerks, muscle aches, cramps, BFS in general) after they are misinformed that twitches lead to ALS, not the other way around.. usually anyway.

Yes, some people say they have stressful lives before they started twitching, so what? So do I, so does just about everyone alse on the planet for some reason or another and stress and anxiety can cause all sorts of things to happen in your body but again, most of the people I talk to said they noticed the twitches and thought they were "curious" so they looked them up in some medical manual or on the internet and I don't need to go into detail about what they found and you KNOW what that did to them.. sent them into a frenzy AFTER the twitches started. Then the whole mess of not believing your doctors when everything comes back normal on your exam and the never ending "what if" starts rolling.

Everyone has stress in their lives. If stress was the root of all of this, there would be a LOT more people with it as well as many other factors involved...
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Stress

Postby Davidd on September 20th, 2002, 11:17 am

I do not believe that stress is the root cause of the twitches...that's not to say that stress does not make them worse but I believe there is an underlying, undetermined cause for them that will hopefully at some point be identified.

I started twitching about a month and a half ago after experiencing numbness and tingling in my hands and feet for about a month. The numbness and tingling went away but the twitches in my calves and sometimes in the rest of my body seem to always be here.

When I am about to fall asleep at night, the calf twitches really act up which re-waken me which means sleep for me is difficult (although Klonopin seems to be helping me sleep through it). At the point I'm about to fall asleep, I feel totally relaxed and that's when the twitches are worse. Actually, even during the day, if I just let my body relax entirely I feel the twitches a lot more. It's almost as if moderate stress makes them better and total relaxation makes them worse.
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Postby DaveKD on September 20th, 2002, 12:38 pm

My personal opinion is there is some mild autoimmune response that is triggered by a virus or an infection and/or maybe some genetic predisposition that gives us these darn twitches. BUT I think constant stress and worry not only makes them worse, but probably paved the way for the syndrome to kick in. Before I had this I had what is referred to as generalized anxiety disorder with panic attacks. The BFS was originally dismissed by my doctor as totally anxiety related, but after being on klonopin and and SSRI I showed him I was feeling fine mentally and still twitching. Then he told me had another patient in his 60's that now has BFS and no history of anxiety so I felt vindicated! The one thing I know for sure is it is best to stop focusing on the source or the cure and enjoy life to the fullest. 8)
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Postby Jake_the_twitch on September 20th, 2002, 12:39 pm

I can only relay my own experience. Prior to my twitching I was under a great deal of stress, above normal life. Apart from having 2 young children, buying a new house, running a significant family business I was experiencing stomach problems that required extensive medical testing etc.

My Doctors won't say Stress caused the twitching but they are trying to treat it as a stress related condition figuring if they reduce my stress levels that either it may stop or reduce the twitching to a level that it becomes unnoticeable.

After a year of trying to overcome my anxiety, which has reduced significantly, I still find that it intrudes in my thoughts far too often. Thus I started on a SSRI (Celexa) which is also helpful and recommended for OCD, last week. ( I figure my thoughts of the twitching is somewhat obsessive and compulsive I also wanted to stop taking the sedatives that I needed to sleep) Well I am happy to report that my twitching has subsided considerably. I haven't had the continuous large muscle twitches that I was getting. I am only left with the small creepy crawling twitches in my calves. I am trying not to get too hopeful as it could be just a coincidence but I will certainly keep everyone on this site informed if I have further success.

There is obviously some kind of chemical imbalance within our Central Nervous System that causes this and since stress does induce chemical changes in the brain it seems logical that it could perhaps be one of the triggering events. There are many ways that cancer can be caused so it is also possible that there are different ways BFS comes about. So far I have seen 3 events in BFS sufferers lives that come up often, stress, sinus infection or stomach flu/virus. What the hell these 3 things have in common, I don't know, but perhaps someday some keen neurology resident will come up with an answer.
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SSRI

Postby SCOTT on September 20th, 2002, 12:59 pm

I ALSO STARTED TODAY ON A SSRI--LEXAPRO.
I AGREE IT MAY BE BETTER TO TRY THAN KEEP ON TWITCHING SO MUCH.
DO THEY HELP YOU SLEEP BETTER ALSO, I WAS GIVEN A LODOSE OF ATAVIN .5MG TO HELP WITH SLEEP?
GOOD TO HEAR YOUR TWITCHES ARE BETTER.
DO YOU GET THEM MOSTLY IN THE CALFS, MINE ARE THERE 24/7 BUT ARE GETTING MILDER AFTER 6 MONTHS.
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Postby Jake_the_twitch on September 20th, 2002, 1:40 pm

Hi Scott:
My twitching started in my calves but very quickly spread all over. My calves twitch all the time while the other twitches are more transient

I agree that the SSRI is worth trying and if they do nothing else but help us ignore the twitching I will take it. They supposedly will help you sleep but as they do take a few weeks to get to a equilibrium state you may need the Ativan in the short term only. I had my first night of sleep without the aid of a sedative last night.

Keep us informed on how the Lexapro works. I hear that it is new SSRI that has far fewer side effects. GOOD LUCK
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SSRI

Postby SCOTT on September 20th, 2002, 2:55 pm

I WILL KEEP IN TOUCH WITH YOU ON THIS, OUR TWITCHES ARE THE SAME CALVES ALL THE TIME EVERY 20-30 SECONDS IN MY CASE AND OTHER PLACES, BACK ARMS ECT JUST SOMETIMES.
CALVES ARE THE WORST.
NO WEAKNESS, JUST RAN 3 MILES.
HOW LONG FOR YOU WITH THE CONSTANT CALF TWITCHING?

STAT IN TOUCH

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Postby Jake_the_twitch on September 20th, 2002, 3:14 pm

1 year and counting. I also run about 6 Km (3-4 miles) every few days and I play hockey. No weakness except mentally. Good Luck
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Postby DaveKD on September 20th, 2002, 3:19 pm

I would like to hear how the Lexapro is also. I know it is made by the makers of Celexa and it has had positive reviews. I have been on a small dose of Paxil as well as Klonopin. I would like to get off the Klonopin.
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Postby Guest on September 20th, 2002, 8:12 pm

Great posts everyone ! I do believe that stress plays a huge role in bfs symptoms, ony because thats exactly what happend to me I was stressed to the max before my twitches started. I do think there is a connection between stress on the nervous system and twitching only going by my own experience of course. I am not on any meds at all, I have found great relief thru not looking up information regarding twitches and or diseases ( as I used to) and reading good books to fill my mind with positive things and not negative, Im trying to reprogramme my brain with good stuff , I take vitamins and excersise regularly, I have noticed a massive difference in my body, I am no longer anxious, I sleep better, and my twitches most days are hardly recogniseable, Ive also found laughter to be my best medicine....

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Postby Guest on September 20th, 2002, 8:14 pm

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Postby JimK on September 21st, 2002, 12:46 am

I agree, I think there is a connection with stress. I was having anxiety attacks years before the twitching and it appears a large quantity of posters had anxiety disorders prior to their twitching. Maybe our bodies produce chemicals that eventually cause these symptoms. You cannot discount it unless you know for sure. Too bad the medical community doesn't know more. Maybe in a 100 years they will.
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