If you’ve been diagnosed with benign fasciculation syndrome, you may still be experiencing a lot of panic as a result of what you’ve been through for the past several weeks or months.
This is because the symptoms of benign fasciculation syndrome can resemble, or seemingly resemble, symptoms of ALS and multiple sclerosis.
If you have benign fasciculation syndrome, you’re perhaps now wondering how to get rid of it, not to mention what the heck even causes benign fasciculation syndrome in the first place.
There are causes and solutions for benign fasciculation syndrome.
The causes are many and include anxiety. “Persons with anxiety or panic attacks have higher levels of excitatory neurochemicals, says Mary Dombovy, MD, a neurologist with Rochester Regional Health in New York.
“These neurochemicals cause the feeling of anxiety, increased heart rate, increased blood pressure and twitching.”
If your case of benign fasciculation syndrome has been caused by anxiety, then logic says you can cure benign fasciculation syndrome by managing your anxiety. The anxiety may or may not relate to fear of ALS or MS.
Anxiety over, for example, your job, may have initially caused some BFS symptoms.
But the symptoms of benign fasciculation syndrome went wild after you suspected (via the Internet) that BFS symptoms resemble symptoms of ALS and MS.
A new level of anxiety set in and exacerbated your pre-existing benign fasciculation syndrome symptoms.
And since then, your body hasn’t had much of a rest from benign fasciculation syndrome.
One of the most effective treatments or even cures, for BFS, is TIME PASSAGE.
Because you know that once a certain period of time passes, what I call the grace period, you can be less panicky about ALS, as this affliction doesn’t exactly take its sweet time in wasting away at your body.
The first few months within the onset of benign fasciculation syndrome can be harrowing, to say the least.
I recommend buying a separate calendar and some sticky-stars or sticky colored circles about the diameter of a nickel.
Every morning, place a sticky on that day on the calendar. Before you know it, you will see rows of stickies, indicating time passage.
Before you know it, the entire calendar page will be full of stickies, indicating one month behind you.
And if you had something more alarming than benign fasciculation syndrome, you know that after 30 days, you’d probably be noticing some very bothersome symptoms, like difficulty holding your coffee cup or going down a staircase.
Benign fasciculation syndrome can have physical causes, such as:
2) being taken off medications
3) viral infections
4) Lyme disease
5) calcium, magnesium and/or potassium deficiency
7) hard exercising, and
8) no known cause.
If you’re taking medications, ask your doctor about side effects, or effects of quitting the medications, that may resemble benign fasciculation syndrome.
The solutions to benign fasciculation syndrome are clear once you establish cause.
But one thing’s for sure: BFS symptoms almost always become more pronounced when you worry about the condition.
Anxiety and hard exercising may be the top causes of benign fasciculation syndrome.
“The muscles are most likely overworked at this point,” says Kevin Plancher, MD, a leading sports orthopedist and sports medicine expert in the New York metropolitan area.
“The nerves that send impulses to the muscles become fatigued as well,” continues Dr. Plancher, “which can cause erratic firing of the muscles.”
Lactic acid buildup following exercise can also be involved. “It alters the way the muscles contract as well, possibly causing twitching.”
But the solution to benign fasciculation syndrome does NOT mean quit exercise!
Once you have retrained your mind to relax and recognize the symptoms of BFS for what they are — benign — you won’t mind these symptoms as a result of exercise.
In fact, you may even begin to use BFS symptoms as a way to confirm that you put in a great exercise session.
Stress management is another solution to benign fasciculation syndrome. Natural ways of managing stress include exercise and finding a new hobby.
Dr. Dombovy completed her neurology residency at Mayo Graduate School of Medicine.
Dr. Plancher is founder of Plancher Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine, and lectures globally on issues related to orthopedic procedures and sports injury management.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.