How can my dystonia make it difficult to socialize?

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Dystonias can make it difficult to socialize because they can cause pain or make enjoyable activities uncomfortable. You may feel that there is a stigma against you just because you have a health condition.

There are a number of ways in which dystonia can make it challenging to socialize or feel connected to others. Symptoms may make it difficult to walk, sit, speak, or see. There may be pain. The uncontrollable and constant muscle contractions are often exhausting. People who are not informed about dystonia may mistake symptoms for signs of substance abuse, mental impairment or bad manners.

Individuals frequently report symptoms of depression and anxiety disorders, including social phobia. In many cases these symptoms precede the onset of dystonia. Research suggests these may be non-motor symptoms of dystonia, not simply a reaction to developing dystonia. Individuals who may be experiencing symptoms of depression and/or anxiety are encouraged to consult a mental health professional.

There are a number of ways in which dystonia can make it challenging to socialize or feel connected to others. Symptoms may make it difficult to walk, sit, speak, or see. There may be pain. The uncontrollable and constant muscle contractions are often exhausting. People who are not informed about dystonia may mistake symptoms for signs of substance abuse, mental impairment or bad manners.

Individuals frequently report symptoms of depression and anxiety disorders, including social phobia. In many cases these symptoms precede the onset of dystonia. Research suggests these may be non-motor symptoms of dystonia, not simply a reaction to developing dystonia. Individuals who may be experiencing symptoms of depression and/or anxiety are encouraged to consult a mental health professional.

Continue Learning about Dystonia

Dystonia

When your muscles contract involuntarily, the condition is called dystonia. Dystonia causes a twisting or clenching of whatever body part is affected. For example, when you have a stroke, the affected arm and hand may be clenched ...

and held in a strange position. Dystonia can be very mild or very severe. It can make your life very difficult and this can lead to frustration, depression or anxiety. See your doctor to treat your symptoms and talk over your frustrations.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.