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Why Are My Hands Shaking? --Top
10 Causes and Remedies

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Last updated December 14, 2017 (originally publish May 31, 2010)

By Louise Carr, Contributing Columnist

Hypoglycemia Can Cause Shaking Hands

Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) can make your hands shake
because the nerves and muscles are being deprived of fuel.
When adrenaline kicks in to try to fight back the shaking can
get worse.

Eating a lot of sugary food can cause hypoglycemia as the
blood sugar is raised dramatically only to plummet shortly
after. To raise your blood sugar and stop the shakiness you
need around 15 to 20g of sugar or simple carbohydrates
such as half a cup of soda, two tablespoons of raisins or four
teaspoons of honey. The shakiness should quickly subside
once the blood sugar is corrected. (Read more about
that keep your blood sugar steady throughout the day.)

Feeling Anxious Can Cause Your Hands to Shake

Any strong emotion such as fear or anger can cause your
hands to shake.
Anxiety attacks or panic attacks can also
result in shaky hands. To reduce the shakiness try herbal teas
that reduce stress and have a calming effect on the body
such as chamomile, orange and wild thyme. Aromatherapy,
yoga and deep breathing can also reduce levels of anxiety
and prevent attacks of shaky hands.

Medication Can Be Responsible for Shaking Hands

Certain medications can cause your hands to shake. In
particular, some asthma drugs, antidepressants and
tranquilizers can cause involuntary movement in your limbs
as well as mood stabilizers such as

Check with your doctor to see if the benefit of the drug is
greater than the problems caused by shaking or if you can
try a different dose or type of medicine. When you stop
taking certain medications, such as Xanax or other
tranquilizers, the withdrawal can make your hands shake.


The list of medications that can cause tremors is long, and
includes lithium carbonate, sodium valproate (Depakene),
valproic acid (Depakote), asthma medicines (albuterol and
Theophyline), amiodarone, procainamide, and cyclosporine,
tacrolimus, tricyclic antidepressants, tiatricol, amiodarone,
procainamide, acyclovir, asthma medicines, lithium carbonate
and antibiotics.

A Thyroid Disorder Could Be Causing Your Shaking Hands

Hyperthyroidism, or ‘overactive thyroid’, is a condition where
the thyroid gland makes too much thyroid hormone. Many
conditions can create this problem including inflammation of
the thyroid due to infection, non-cancerous growths or
taking a lot of thyroid hormone or iodine. It is generally
treatable and may even disappear on its own. Shakiness is
not the only symptom so ask a doctor if you are concerned
about, for example, weight loss in addition to shaky hands.

Deficiency in Magnesium and Vitamin B1 Can Cause
Shaking Hands

Symptoms of a low level deficiency of magnesium include
muscle tremors and twitching along with irritability and
excitability. More severe deficiencies also cause insomnia, leg
and foot cramps and severely shaking hands.  Many cases of
muscle cramps are caused by low levels of magnesium. A
1983 study led by Dr. L. Liu found that 500 mg of magnesium
glucomate relieved muscle spasms in an adult female tennis

Vitamin B1, also known as thiamine,  is essential for nerve
stimulation as well as for the metabolism of carbohydrates
that provide the brain with energy. B-vitamins reduce
shakiness by calming the nervous system.

Nerve cells require vitamin B1 in order to function normally
and vitamin B-1 deficiency, while rare, can cause shaking.

Foods rich in
magnesium include dark leafy greens such as
kale or spinach (each of which provide about 20% of the
daily recommended amount of magnesium), pumpkins seeds
(137% of the daily recommended amount) and most nuts.


11. "
Alien Hand Syndrome" Can Cause Hand Tremors

A rare phenomenon called "alien hand syndrome (AHS)"
occurs when  your hand shakes or trembles involuntarily and
you experience a sense that your hand does not belong to
you. This condition often occurs after a traumatic event such
as a stroke which results in damage to the corpus callosum or
medial frontal cortex regions of your brain. (Read more
about the
ideal breakfast to prevent stroke.)

As noted in a 2009 review of this condition by doctors in the
Clinica Urbamin in Spain, "The common feature of AHS is the
involuntary, autonomous motor activity of the affected limb
and the denial of limb ownership, characterized by
involuntary, uncontrollable, and purposeless movements."

Doctors from the Neuro-behavioral Center of Beth Israel
Hospital in New York observed in a 1992 study of 20 patients
with alien hand syndrome that, when the damage is to frontal
part of your brain, it affects your dominant hand and "is
associated with reflexive grasping, groping, and compulsive
manipulation of tools."

Massage Techniques Can Relieve Tremors and Rigidity

Using a combination of Swedish massage, reflexology and
other techniques including using a soft, rocking motion,
researchers from McGill University in Canada and other
universities have been able to reduce tremors and shaking in
Parkinson's disease patients.
Read more.

13.  Exposure to Heavy Metals Linked to Essential Tremors

Exposure to heavy metals, and in particular manganese, has
been linked to development of essential tremors, according to
the Essential Tremor Organization.


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