Essential Tremor Awareness Month is observed in March. Essential tremor, which is also referred to as benign tremor is a medical condition in which there is an occurrence of involuntary rhythmic contractions and twitching movements of specific muscle groups in a single or multiple body parts, the cause of which is unknown. Essential tremor is symmetrical, and the body parts affected by E.T. are the arms, hands, or fingers; although it occasionally affects the head, vocal cords, or any other body parts. Essential tremor may occur as an action tremor or a postural tremor, occurring with consistent muscle tone. Based on its characteristics, an essential tremor differs from a resting tremor, such as in Parkinson’s disease, which in this case, is not correlated with movement.
History of Essential Tremor Awareness Month
The earliest record of the term “essential tremor” being used to describe this syndrome, was in 1874 to describe patients. Though E.T. was usually described as a disorder with just one symptom, patients who suffered dystonia of the neck or face would often surface in essential tremor discourse, as symptoms were similar to one another. In early research materials, emphasis was placed on the fact that idiopathic tremulousness, though common, was distinct from Parkinson’s disease.
It was also noted that patients who had been dealing with mild E.T. for an extended period, usually experienced it late in life; thus suggesting that essential tremor is an age-associated syndrome. It was also observed that a late occurrence of essential tremor could be linked to an increase in the risk of an occurrence of dementia, or deteriorate into Parkinson’s disease, and in a few cases, eventual death.
In the past couple of decades, medical investigations have sought to establish a more concrete definition of essential tremor to raise the probability of capturing it all into one single entity. Under this recent development, essential tremors are now an ailment of action tremors occurring in the arms and hands, as such cases make up at least 95% of patients with E.T. Essential tremor has a significantly lower occurrence in other parts of the body such as the head, the maxillofacial areas, the trunk, and the lower limbs. Records show that an approximate percentage of 70 to 80% of people with E.T. have mild tremors and are yet to consult a physician for it.
Essential Tremor Awareness Month timeline
The term “essential tremor” as we know it today, is first mentioned by professor of medicine, Pietro Burresi.
The International Essential Tremor Foundation, responsible for all things E.T., is established as a nonprofit organization.
A survey of the Movement Disorder Society, attempting to better define essential tremor, is conducted.
The National Essential Tremor Awareness is created by the International Essential Tremor Foundation.
Essential Tremor Awareness Month FAQs
What is essential tremor?
Essential tremor is a medical condition in which there is an occurrence of involuntary rhythmic contractions and twitching movements of specific muscle groups in a single or multiple body parts.
What parts are affected by E.T?
Although there have been cases of E.T. affecting other parts of the body, 95% of patients who have it, experience the symptoms in their upper limbs.
Is E.T. terminal?
There is currently no available evidence as to essential tremors being a cause of death. It however may lead to some disability.
How to Observe Essential Tremor Awareness Month
Do some research
The idea behind observing National Essential Tremor Awareness Month is to enlighten people more about the subject. You too can do some research, and get enlightened on everything there is to know about E.T.
Start a fundraiser
If you have the requisite social capital, you can go ahead and be a darling by starting a fundraiser designated to support the I.E.T.F. in their efforts to create essential tremor awareness. Any amount generated will help.
Spread the news
Luckily we’ve got the Internet, and social media, through which a lot can be achieved. You can join in the conversation and share information about E.T. and E.T. awareness on your social media page.
5 Interesting Facts About Essential Tremors
About 10 million Americans have E.T.
An estimated census of about 10 million Americans is said to have essential tremors.
It is usually misdiagnosed as Parkinson’s
Cases of essential tremor are usually wrongly diagnosed as Parkinson’s disease, due to certain similarities in both conditions.
E.T. is not a death sentence
Most people with essential tremors don’t die as a result of having the condition; at worst, people become disabled.
E.T. is hereditary
Essential tremor has been proved to be a genetic recurrence in many cases.
E.T. has no age restrictions
While most cases of essential tremor occur in most people’s old age, it can also occur at any age in an individual’s life.
Why Essential Tremor Awareness Month is Important
It’s an opportunity to create awareness
N.E.T.A. Month is that time of the year specially targeted at spreading awareness about essential tremors. This is usually a time for sensitizing people.
The I.E.T.F. does a lot of work as regards researching and developing ways by which to manage E.T. and as such, they need a lot of funding. N.E.T.A. Month is usually a good time to canvass around for these much-needed funds.
National Essential Tremor Month usually features a series of free or endorsed screenings and consultations for persons living with any of its symptoms. Make sure you get tested!
Essential Tremor Awareness Month dates