I am always shaky.

If you have a condition called essential tremor, your ability to write may be impacted to the point where you can not draw a smooth spiral, as shown above.

When you arms, hands, legs or other body parts shake or move unintentionally, you have a neurological condition called a movement disorder.

Movement disorders can cause problems with muscle coordination and balance. There are 10 million people around the world who have a neurological disorder. The most common movement disorder globally is called essential tremor. This is when your muscles don’t work in sync when you are trying to perform a task, such as drawing a spiral.

Is essential tremor the same as Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson’s Disease is very different than essential tremor. Parkinson’s disease is a neurodegenerative disorder that can cause tremor (and other symptoms). With Parkinson’s Disease, you can have a tremor when your muscles are at rest, as well as slowed movement, muscle stiffness and problems with walking and falling.

While Parkinson’s is a condition that typically affects people that are older, tremor can happen at any age.

Essential tremor is 8 times more common than Parkinson’s Disease.

Women may have a greater chance of tremor if there is a family history of tremor. In clinic, nervous system experts may check for thyroid problems, assess alcohol intake and review the prescription and non-prescription medications that you are taking.

There are also things that you can do to reduce the impact of tremor on your function.

You can learn more about how to manage coordination problems with Your Brain Doctor.