Perceived weakness is an awful thing to have, and it originates from the mind, when someone starts believing he or she has ALS due to muscle twitching.
Perceived weakness can disrupt a person’s life.
Perceived weakness, though, can be managed, and time passage has a nice way of putting it to rest.
A person who’s been dealing with a lot of muscle twitching may have been diagnosed with benign fasciculation syndrome, and despite the diagnosis, can’t get ALS out of his mind.
As long as ALS is living rent-free in his mind, he suffers from perceived weakness.
This is the mind playing tricks on you. You went and read the ALS sites after Googling “What causes muscle twitching?” and now you can’t help but wonder if every little sign of weakness might in fact be clinical rather than perceived.
Anxiety over this intensifies the muscle twitching, which then intensifies the fixation on ALS and doing strength tests to reassure yourself that the weakness is only perceived rather than pathological.
Realize that your senses are heightened.
You’ve always required a little “umph” to get out of that deep soft chair.
Now suddenly, your heightened senses perceive this as possible pathological weakness in your legs. No detail of your everyday movements gets missed.
You stumble a bit on the rug that’s always bunched up near the laundry room.
You now wonder if this is clinical weakness, even though you’ve stumbled on the rug hundreds of times over the past 10 years.
As time passage increases from the onset of muscle twitching, the power of perceived weakness diminishes.
Unfortunately, it often resurfaces when a new area of the body begins twitching.
This psychological phenomenon can apply to any body part including fingers, tongue, feet and calves.
Though people with benign fasciculation syndrome may have exercise intolerance, this isn’t the same as pathological weakness.
Ironically, people with benign fasciculation syndrome often engage in strength and balance tests that would wear out most people.
I once read about a man who repeatedly got up out of a chair on one leg.
As a former personal trainer, I’ve had my clients doing this (without cheating) —off of a bench or exercise stool — not as a strength test, but as a variation of squatting to shape, tone and strengthen the leg and buttocks muscles.
And it’s not easy. Only my fit clients were able to do this.
Yet this is a common strength test that people with benign fasciculation syndrome are drawn to.
Invariably, they tire quickly and become even more petrified.
Or, they fear the worst when one leg doesn’t perform as well as the other.
We all have a dominant leg. Of COURSE one side won’t perform as well as the other, but…it STILL performs, doesn’t it?
You have no reference point anyways, because you’ve never done these strength tests before, so how would you know that the “weaker” leg wasn’t ALWAYS weaker?
If perceived weakness in a spot has disappeared, but then it returns, ask yourself if the sensation is the same as it was before.
If the answer is yes, then remind yourself that, like before, it will fade away. ALS symptoms don’t come and go.