I attended Dr. Joaquin Farias' Oromandibular Dystonia workshop back in April. It was well worth the time and effort but when I got home I felt so overwhelmed and frazzled that I did not know where to begin. I had taken about 24 pages of notes that I needed to go through and organize. I learned new techniques and exercises to add to my unending list of therapies and exercises. In addition to dealing with dystonia I have been going to physical therapy for some pelvic floor issues so I am am doing exercises for that as well. I also had family members become ill and wanted to help them out in any way that I could. I hit my wall of emotional and physical tolerance and had to tell myself to slow down and that it was OK that I could not be the caregiver that I wanted to be or take the time to write share my journey. I finally feel like things are getting more manageable. That is what we all need to do is manage to find some "normal".
Here are some of my notes and key takeaways from the Oromandibular workshop with Dr. Farias . A lot of this information could apply to any type of dystonia and is in his books which can be purchased on his website HERE..
- Trauma causes stress. Trauma is close to having a stroke.
- Stress causes trauma ( dystonia) in us. Others may get cancer, heart attack, stroke, etc...
- There is a genetic component but it usually lies dormant until stress triggers dystonia. Usually it is extreme stress or a traumatic event.
- Vagus nerve dysregulation is the cause of dystonic symptoms.
- Too much focus on the basal ganglia-not the root cause of dystonia.
- To heal dystonia you must address the whole body, not one part of the brain.
- 100% of people with dystonia have dysregulation of the eyes.
- The parasympathetic nervous system controls the eyes.
- Saliva production is reduced causing dry eyes, gastro issues, vaginal dryness, etc...
- 90 % of people with any type of dystonia have tongue dysregulation. 100% with oral dystonia.
- Socialization is very important in healing-creates dopamine.
- 15 minutes of screen time reduces melatonin by 80%. Turn off those cell phones early!
- With ORAL dystonia you have to first stop the gut to cause abnormal responses.
- Healing the gut FIRST is crucial. By changing the gut you regulate seratonin and melatonin.
- Average time to heal the gut is 6 months.
- See a GI doctor, Allergist or naturopathic nutritionist.
- Gluten intolerance/allergy
- Sugar intake
- Lactose intolerance
- fructose intolerance
Try elimination diets to stabilize blood sugar/glycemic levels.
The gut controls the brain. Busy Mind=Busy Brain
Some tips from the workshop on managing dystonia:
It's OK to fail.
Give up on solving the condition to produce dopamine.
The more stress you have the more symptoms you will have.
There is NO QUICK FIX for dystonia.
Be patient and kind to yourself.