5 Conditions That Can Cause Involuntary Body Movements
Huntington’s Disease is a fatal genetic disorder which causes the progressive breakdown of nerve cells in the brain, the Huntington’s Disease Society of America reports. Today, there are approximately 30,000 symptomatic Americans and more than 200,000 at-risk of inheriting the condition.
- Severe chorea (involuntary movements)
- Inability to speak
Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an unpredictable, disabling disease of the central nervous system, interrupting the flow of information within the brain as well as between the brain and body. Although the cause is unknown and specific symptoms aren’t concrete, patients often experience:
- Tremors of the hands or limbs
- Muscular cramping, difficulty walking, inability to rapidly change motions, involuntary movements, muscle paralysis, muscle rigidity, muscle weakness, problems with coordination, stiff muscles, clumsiness, muscle spasms, or overactive reflexes
- Slurred speech or impaired voice
Parkinson’s disease happens when a person’s brain slowly stops producing a neurotransmitter called dopamine. As levels of dopamine decrease, patients become unable to regulate their movements, body and emotions. Though not fatal on its own, complications resulting from the condition are rated as the 14th top cause of death in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Signs and symptoms of Parkinson’s include:
- Tremors of the hands, arms, legs, jaw and face
- Speech problems, such as softness of voice or slurred speech caused by lack of muscle control
- Impaired fine motor dexterity and motor coordination
It’s important to note that some individuals initially only experience symptoms on one side of the body for many years, prior to developing symptoms on the remaining side of their body.
If you are experiencing unusual involuntary body movements, please see your healthcare provider for proper testing and diagnosis.