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Forums / Anxiety / Physical anxiety symptoms - muscle twitches, cramps, weakness

Topic: Physical anxiety symptoms - muscle twitches, cramps, weakness

  1. Rubybleu
    Rubybleu avatar
    42 posts
    2 March 2019

    The past week or two I’ve been totally ruled by my health anxiety. I started having a weak feeling in my left hand and arm and something about MND came on TV and now of course I have MND. I’ve been experiencing muscle twitches and cramps/sore muscles, mainly in my calves and forearms. I saw my Dr in relation to this and he tested my reflexes, strength and pulses and all was fine. I keep trying to reason with myself but I just can’t shake this MND idea. It’s ridiculous. My Dr only prescribed medication to take when I’m having a really bad moment but the problem is I’m having these every day for most of the day.

    Is anyone else experiencing this type of physical anxiety symptoms? This is all new to me as I’ve never experienced this type of anxiety before.

    9 people found this helpful
  2. sometimesanxious
    sometimesanxious avatar
    19 posts
    3 March 2019 in reply to Rubybleu

    I am currently experiencing extreme physical symptoms at the moment and can totally understand what you are going through. I have talked myself into having so many illnesses in the past few weeks.

    currently my symptoms are really bad at night while I am trying to sleep. It is so incredibly draining both physicallly and mentally.

    I started on medication nearly two weeks ago now and was hoping I would be seeing a little bit more relief then I am but I know I need to be patient as everyone’s journey is different.

    3 people found this helpful
  3. Jessicaloveslife22
    blueVoices member
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Jessicaloveslife22 avatar
    10 posts
    3 March 2019 in reply to Rubybleu



    I've been experiencing the same I also have tried to work out the cause such as low potassium or the meds I'm on. I have had muscle twitches before from a different medication. I have exactly the same symptoms as you is it all anxiety? I hope not. I usually find that if I have good talk to someone whilst I'm experiencing the symptoms it can help decifer whether it's anxiety or not as if it is it'll calm down. E.g. phoning lifeline for instance and if I notice a difference then I know what it is. I think mine is a bit of everything anxiety and meds but could be wrong. Hope you find relief soon I know the symptoms and feeling. Jess.

    1 person found this helpful
  4. Guest_2496
    Guest_2496 avatar
    376 posts
    3 March 2019 in reply to sometimesanxious

    Hi to both of you, and yes - same! Over the last couple of months I’ve thought of multiple illnesses I probably have. But I don’t.

    I think it all starts with the breathing. Without even realising it I am often over breathing, or starting to hyperventilate, and then muscles tighten and away we go!

    Try concentrating on your breathing - slow it down, deepen it, and see if that helps during panicked moments?


    1 person found this helpful
  5. Rubybleu
    Rubybleu avatar
    42 posts
    3 March 2019 in reply to sometimesanxious

    Thank you so much for responding! Can I ask, do you also get the twitching and sore/weak muscles? It’s out of control today and I seriously feel like my body is about to curl up and break. I have two young children so it’s super exhausting trying to be a good mum to them but also deal with all these anxious thoughts running through my head. I also find nights are bad but also mornings too.

    I really hope you start to feel better on your medication. I know I need to go back and ask for some new ones but then I get anxious thinking the Dr is going to think I’m a hypochondriac, which I am :/

  6. Rubybleu
    Rubybleu avatar
    42 posts
    3 March 2019 in reply to Jessicaloveslife22

    Thanks so much for your response Jess!

    Its so hard isn’t it.

    Its so good that you are brave enough to call and talk to someone. I don’t think I have the guts to do that yet. It’s a struggle to even talk to my partner about it.

    Ive also thought it may be from a vitamin deficiency but alas I also have anxiety about chocking so swallowing most vitamins is a horror for me. Maybe there’s liquid forms??

    I hope you start to feel better soon too.

  7. Rubybleu
    Rubybleu avatar
    42 posts
    3 March 2019 in reply to Guest_2496

    Thanks so much for your response Annie!

    Breathing techniques is a great option so thank you for reminding me of that. My issue with that is that I have two small children with me constantly and I barely have a moment to breathe let alone concentrate on my breathing. I’m going to try and invest the evenings for some breathing sessions and anything else that might be helpful.

  8. Stanlee14
    Stanlee14 avatar
    24 posts
    3 March 2019 in reply to Rubybleu

    Hey Rubybleu

    Reading your post was almost like I had written it myself. I’ve been suffering with the same symptoms for the past month. Whilst these symptoms are concerning I too have visited my doctor. It’s important to state I’ve had general anxiety and depression most my life and believed I had experienced all it could throw at me, however the last 4 months my general anxiety has turned into a monster.

    Because most of my anxieties are health related like your self I too have convinced myself I have an ever growing list of conditions. I could probably list off 50 or more in the last 4 months- a new week, a new condition. My doctor informs me Iam in remarkably good health and has increased my anti anxiety meds as he believes ive developed a panic dissorder.

    I was skeptical at first that anxiety could cause these physical symptoms as I’ve had anxiety my whole life but as my phycologist tells me the human mind is both incredible and terrifying it can manifest pain from nothing and take it away. When your mind acts one way ie negatively the body tends to follow it. As to how to combat this, I’m still figuring it out myself but the others here have already covered some I usefull tips I use myself like meditation, breathing exercises.

    Personally I found mindfulness really useful and there are some great apps out there that can get you started and typically you only need 5 mins a day to feel the benefits great if you have kids. Sorry for the long ramble but I hope it helps to know your not alone.


    5 people found this helpful
  9. Rubybleu
    Rubybleu avatar
    42 posts
    4 March 2019 in reply to Stanlee14

    Thank you so much for your response Stan! And don’t apologise for your rambling as it’s much appreciated right now. Kids are in bed and I’m trying to relax on the lounge but here comes the twitching again!! And the anxious mnd thoughts :(

    I had quite a good day but now I feel like I’m back to square one. It’s so exhausting.

    I hope the increase in your meds helps!

  10. Stanlee14
    Stanlee14 avatar
    24 posts
    5 March 2019 in reply to Rubybleu

    Now worries I’m a shocker for rambling, here I go again. Somthing else just to think about. You mentioned you had a better day, which is great! However when you finally relax these twitches and symptoms start up again. Whilst I don’t know what age your kids are but it sounds to me you are pretty pre-occupied with them. I propose that this time on your lounge is the first time you’ve been alone with your thoughts.

    I know personally it’s these times of rest in particular before bed my own mind wanders and the anxiety thoughts run rampant because your mind is not distracted. This is a perfect time to practice your breathing or meditation. Also personally I’ve found some light stretching a few times a day helps my muscles relax. Remember it’s the flight or fight response that’s causing this, it’s preparing your body for danger even though it’s not there it’s a natural response to anxiety.

    Think of the fight or flight like running without moving. Even though your sitting in a chair your body on a biological level is ready to sprint at million miles an hour to safety. So naturally when your body is doing this for extended periods of time it fatigues and muscles fatigue and they can twitch and do all kinds of things because of the adrenaline. Also a mineral or vitamin deficiency can be a real possability and the added stress will not help this if that’s the case, the body needs fuel to do that running without moving. I actually have a major deficiency myself. But that’s somthing you’d have to discuss with your GP. I also suspect your doctor prescribed you the same med that mine gave me, some kind of muscle relaxant, regardless most of these meds can cause the same problems. Ironic I know. Any way please do let me know how you get on in few days. Best Wishes


    4 people found this helpful
  11. AnotherOne12
    AnotherOne12 avatar
    24 posts
    5 March 2019 in reply to Rubybleu
    Several years ago I went through a 3 month patch of anxiety after some shocking news and jad muscle twitching, random muscle pain, bruised spots that came and went (where there was no bruise), my arms used to ache, my fingers felt tight and weak like nerve damage and I convinced my self of many diseases. They gradually subsided after I came to learn nothing was actually wrong. I kept challenging my thoughts, and I stayed of Google. (That was hard as I always felt compelled to go search compulsively.)
    6 people found this helpful
  12. Rubybleu
    Rubybleu avatar
    42 posts
    6 March 2019 in reply to AnotherOne12
    Thanks so much for your response! That is so amazing that you came out of it! It’s hard to see an end point at the moment but you’ve given me hope.
  13. Rubybleu
    Rubybleu avatar
    42 posts
    6 March 2019 in reply to Stanlee14

    Stan I’m going to copy your response and read it whenever I’m having an anxious twitching moment!

    You are right in saying that my body does need fuel to conquer these symptoms because the problem is this anxiety causes a lot of nausea for me and I generally have a chocking phobia so the anxiety, nausea and phobia all contribute to me not eating very much.

    My kids are 2 and 4 and both boys so very full on!

    I’m going to see my GP hopefully this weekend to discuss possible deficiencies and new medication.

  14. Zakoza
    Zakoza  avatar
    6 posts
    4 July 2019

    @Rubybleu, are you still experiencing these symptoms? I’ve just come across your post today whilst using Google to diagnose my nervous twitches and muscle cramps. I have completely convinced myself that I have MND and it is consuming my life!!!

    I feel exactly as you have described and I’m terrified. I’m also hesitant to talk to my dr because I’m sure they will think I’m a hypochondriac!.... last month I was convinced I had a brain tumor and even insisted on having a brain MRI. Exactly as my dr predicted, it was clear. As soon as I got the all clear for the brain tumor I developed new symptoms, weakness in my hand, muscle twitching & soreness and the more I Google the more I obsess over it.

  15. Bunbun
    Bunbun avatar
    9 posts
    7 July 2019 in reply to Zakoza

    I’ve just come across this post and Zakoza I could swear what you wrote I could have written myself!

    The EXACT same thing happened to me! I too thought I had a brain tumour and I was so so upset about it, eventually got an mri and it was all clear too and then I started getting muscle twitching, weakness etc and now I’m convinced it’s mnd and I’ve seen my doctor multiple times about it and she assures me I’m fine but I just can’t get it out of my head and I feel like the symptoms are just getting worse, not getting better and I’m just a wreck

  16. SamzDon
    SamzDon avatar
    2 posts
    9 July 2019 in reply to Bunbun


    This is exactly what I am going through right now and cannot sleep because I am convincing myself I have MND!

    I am extremely anxious and have that skat feeling about me but I also have right muscles and muscle twitches, which in my logic brain assume they are from my body running at such an anxious state and my muscles being contracted all the time.

    has anyone on here still got these symptoms and did they go away? I have an appointment with a Neurologist tomorrow.... but now I’m wondering if it is all just extreme anxiety??

  17. SamzDon
    SamzDon avatar
    2 posts
    9 July 2019 in reply to Rubybleu

    Hi @Rubybleu

    just writing to you to see if you still are having these symptoms?

  18. Robbie8888
    Robbie8888 avatar
    12 posts
    9 July 2019 in reply to SamzDon
    Hello samzdon I know exactly what you are going through it was the most terrifying thing I went through these were my symptoms, muscle weakness arms and legs, extreme muscle twitching all over my body absolutely everywhere it was so constant, extreme dizziness the list goes on I went to a neurologist and got everything nasty ruled out I convinced my self I was really sick but the fact is anxiety and extreme stress can bring on benign muscle twitches that can last for months it's been 2 months now and I still have a little twitches here and there, but it has improved so much and almost disappeared after I contained my fears. That is really important you must stop stressing and contain your fears and it will gradually disappear or just for the peace of mind go get all the tests done and clear yourself. I did, I had a nerve test and an emg done to rule out the scary stuff you described it gave me the peace of mind I had mri done on my back and brain and a blood test that tested everything there is nothing wrong with doing that for the sake of peace of mind and you will have nothing to worry about other then getting your anxiety under control I really hope I helped you let's win this anxiety battle together
  19. Robbie8888
    Robbie8888 avatar
    12 posts
    9 July 2019 in reply to Zakoza
    Hey I have had all these symptoms I was so obsessed and it ruined me I just went and done all the test necessary to rule it all out and after you stop fearing I promise you it will eventually subside and disappear it's even 2 months for me i still have a little twitch here and there but it's almost gone go see a neurologist for peace of mind and let's win this anxiety battle together because you are not alone
    1 person found this helpful
  20. TheAnxiousOne
    TheAnxiousOne avatar
    9 posts
    11 July 2019 in reply to Rubybleu

    Hi everyone,

    I’m wondering how you’re going with muscle weakness symptoms you mentioned?

    I started on some meds about a month ago, and a couple of weeks before that I noticed some weakness in my right leg which now includes my right arm as well. I feel it mostly in my leg and oddly I feel like it’s coming from the joints.

    All this started after I had a massive panic attack after my MRI result showed some spots on my brain. I haven’t been able to calm down since then given that one of these spots happens to be in a place where MS spot would be. My specialist reassured me that it’s not MS but to come back in 6 months time for another MRI just to ensure nothing has changed.

    I’ve had anxiety for a number of years now. But just recently it all blew up very quickly. Reading about your symptoms has me reassured that this most probably is one of anxiety’s physical symptoms.

    Did anyone else experience this muscle weakness and on one side in particular?

    Thanks guys

    1 person found this helpful
  21. Shaker56
    Shaker56 avatar
    2 posts
    12 July 2019 in reply to SamzDon

    Hi SamzDon, I believe it is extreme anxiety. I’ve had all you wrote & more & after many tests which are clear it’s finally been confirmed it’s anxiety. I’m on meds now & seeing a shrink thanks to my long suffering doctor. Early days but I hope I get over this!

    You will too with the right medical doctor 👍

  22. Mike50
    Mike50 avatar
    2 posts
    15 July 2019
    Hi all!
    I too get these cramps, twitches and sore muscles.
    Please look up BFS. This Benign Fasciculation Syndrome. Very weird symptoms.
    I am a health anxiety sufferer. In my mind I had all the deceases one could get.
    I did have two EMG's. Both were fine. Funny thing is when I took the second test I noticed the muscles on my wife's feet were twitching also... Hahahah she just never noticed them.
    The twitching is annoying. The sore muscles which I sometimes get after a little chore are a nuisance. Oh yeah, I get tremors too when my arms are tired.
    No cure... Look up sensitization, sensitized nerves due to prolonged stress.
  23. worried_about_it
    worried_about_it avatar
    2 posts
    16 July 2019 in reply to Rubybleu
    I’m so glad to find this thread! Looking for a little reassurance…

    I’m 35/m, healthy, good nutrition. I work at a computer and weightlift 3-4 days/week. Mother has MS, her sister had ALS. Everyone in my family has elevated anxiety levels, including me.

    A few weeks ago I started getting Ulnar Nerve Entrapment symptoms during the night, at first in 1 hand at a time. (tingling/fuzziness in pinky and ring finger). I kept my usual routine, but over the following weeks the symptoms got more regular, and I started noticing them during the day. This was already causing me a A LOT of anxiety, as I started worrying about permanent nerve/muscle damage, etc.

    I went to see my GP, who was not too concerned. He said it was classic symptoms of a compressed Ulnar Nerve, and either I could lay off the gym and wait, or go see a Neurologist if I was worried. He also mentioned that it was a little unusual that the symptoms were on both arms (bilateral).

    I latched onto that last part, and started Google-ing related topics. I ended up reading about MND, MS, ALS, etc., which were concerning. But I still believed that my symptoms were local to an impingement in my arms from my repetitive work and weighlifting.

    The Next Day— I woke up with mild vertigo, weakness and brain fog . This made me a little more nervous, given my arm issues.

    The Next Day (2)— I started getting muscle twitches in my legs and around my body. This is went I went into full-blown panic, having ever-more intense waves of anxiety.

    Despite my family history, people think that the twitching muscles is a result of the anxiety. I was given a anti-anxiety med by a friend yesterday, and almost all the symptoms went away. I also felt free to be in the moment, without it being clouded by “worst case” thoughts every time a remaining twitch would happen. (I'd rather not take meds)

    I have an appt. with an appointment with a neurologist in 2 days, and I'm really anxious about what he will find through EMG, NCV, MRI or otherwise. I’m having trouble containing the fear right now, and it’s ruining my days/nights.

    Sorry for the long post! I hope it’s useful for somebody. Would love to hear anyone’s feedback about their related experiences. :)

    Thanks in advance.
    1 person found this helpful
  24. Zakoza
    Zakoza  avatar
    6 posts
    17 July 2019 in reply to worried_about_it


    I’m still experiencing the muscle twitching, mostly in my right leg- calf muscle, thigh, butt, foot. I’ve been back to see a different GP (regular GP is away) hoping for some medication to help with my anxiety but she would only give me a referral to a neurologist. She told me that even though she didn’t think I had anything serious, she would not give me anything for the anxiety until my twitching had been assessed and MND ruled out. She also told me to book an appointment with a psychologist.

    Currently I wake every morning and the first thing I do is throw up. I find my anxiety is much worse of a morning. It’s terrifying!

    May I ask what anxiety medication your friend gave you? I have a close friend who gave me some tablets to take to help me sleep but I found they made me worse.

    I have another appointment with my regular GP who is also a psychologist in 2 weeks time.... I’m holding off on the neurologist app until I’ve had a second opinion.

    Move also been to see a chiropractor who did a full assessment on me. She told me that a lot of the tests she does are similar to that of a neurologist. She was very clear in stating that she was NOT a Dr (obviously) but that she did not see any cause for concern in the assessment she did on me. So that gave me great comfort.

    Question for you all, do you find that your twitching is predominantly in the one spot? Or is it widespread throughout your whole body? The fact that mine is more often in my right leg is worrying me. I do get the odd twitch in other places on my body, but it’s mostly in the one leg.

    I’m so scared!

  25. worried_about_it
    worried_about_it avatar
    2 posts
    18 July 2019 in reply to Zakoza


    Try not to be scared, we’re all here for you! I’ll try to check this board as often as possible, as I will also have updates. Just know that so much in life is out of our hands, and when things like this happen, we tend to focus on the (possibly) scary future instead of all the things we’ve been so lucky to experience in the past. Whatever the result, take this opportunity to savor each day and appreciate the people you care about. :)

    Most of my twitching has also been in my right leg- mainly the upper calf, and upper quad, and sometimes around other places. But when it’s particularly bad I also notice it in other areas of my body, arms and even torso.

    It has me pretty worried, and I am hoping that it is somehow a result of my significant anxiety. But I have to be honest, I am very eager to see a neurologist. I would encourage you to do the same. I know it’s scary, but if it is something serious, it’s better to know about it sooner than later so you can attack it the best you can. And if it’s nothing, then you can imagine the relief!!

    I have my first visit with a neurologist this evening. I am extremely nervous, but also a little relieved that I finally get to talk to an expert about my problems. I’m also nervous that I won’t be able to get any immediate “results” or be able to rule out any scary stuff, as these things can require multiple tests.

    In the meantime, my regular doctor has prescribed medication to manage my anxiety. I am hesitant to take it, but don’t see any other way around managing my panic and anxiety throughout this process which could take a little while. As I mentioned in my last post, when I have managed to get my anxiety down and be fully relaxed, I rarely notice any twitching or symptoms. I’m hoping this is a good sign.

    I’ll try to update this board as I move forward with my treatment. I am hoping beyond hope that my mind is more powerful than I ever imagined- and that I am creating the symptoms which I most feared.

    Thanks for your support.

    1 person found this helpful
  26. Rubybleu
    Rubybleu avatar
    42 posts
    18 July 2019

    I’m sorry I haven’t responded to you all sooner as I haven’t been on here for quite a while.

    So update - twitches, weakness and tingling have all STOPPED! And I firmly believe it was all due to low magnesium caused by anxiety.

    I also did immense online research in to MND and twitches ARE NOT a first symptom. They are an end symptom. You don’t steadily lose strength or feel weakness - your limb just stops working one day out of no where.

    I’m still struggling with anxiety but I know now where all my physical symptoms are coming from. I take magnesium supplements which help a lot.

    6 people found this helpful
  27. Zakoza
    Zakoza  avatar
    6 posts
    19 July 2019 in reply to worried_about_it

    Worried_about_it’s thank you so much for your response. It really does help knowing that someone else feels exactly the same as I do!

    Can I ask how your neurologist appointment went? I’m really hoping you received a positive response!

    I’ve actually managed to get some decent sleep the last couple of nights which has helped my mindset immensely!!! A combination of Restavit and a magnesium supplement (given to me by my chiro) has helped the twitching so much! I’ve found that the sleep has helped my anxiety ease enough to think rationally and that has greatly reduced my twitching and tingling.

    I will keep checking back on this board for an update on your neurology appointment!

    Thanks again for you support!!! It really, truly helps!!!

  28. Robbie8888
    Robbie8888 avatar
    12 posts
    20 July 2019 in reply to Zakoza
    I know this all to well guys and it was the most terrifying thing I felt with I still have twitches here and there but it has improved so much, I went to a neurologist and got a emg, nerve test and a blood test that checks for muscle and nerve eating proteins and it all came back clear :) it was great for my mind set and you guys should do the same for the peace of mind
  29. Sid777
    Sid777 avatar
    1 posts
    23 July 2019
    Hi all. I have suffered from anxiety for around 10 years. During this time I have used doctor prescribed meds but for the last few years I have kept the anxiety in check by using a herb mix containing St John's Wort. All has been well until a couple of weeks ago when I started getting muscle tightness in the front of my neck which leaves me feeling like I'm being choked, and a warm tingling sensation throughout my body and face. It's like I can't tell if I'm hot or cold. A few nights I have awakened to the tingling becoming a burning sensation throughout my body (with no fever) which leads to uncontrollable shaking and twitching, sometimes up to 20mins duration, it's like I am freezing cold. The first time it happened I called an ambulance thinking I was about to have a seizure. The ambos believed I had had a massive panic attack. Last night the shaking and tingling occurred on and off for 4 hours! It only happens at night and I don't feel majorly stressed or anxious but I'm wondering now if it could be something subconscious while I'm sleeping causing it. I have had ECG's, blood tests, a CT scan and an MRI and they have all been clear. Has anyone else ever experienced anything similar? TIA :)
  30. AshyPeach
    AshyPeach avatar
    2 posts
    25 July 2019

    I can relate to a lot what everyone is going through in this thread.

    I have been on a downward spiral since March this year, Muscle twitching, Aches & Pains, Tiredness and more

    I am now at the stage my whole right arm and leg just aches all the time, Tingling in both my feet but mainly my right foot just randomly throughout the day. Big Toe on my right foot twitches out and to does my right Thumb. my right Arm aches and travels into my neck as well, it Hurts to pick things up with significant weight to make it all worse

    I feel like muscles on the right said of my face aren't as strong as the used to be, I get pressure in my nostrils randomly and my right ear makes a vibrating sound randomly like my eardrum is spazzing out.

    Lastly, I feel like movement on my right leg Is slightly impaired, whenever I complete Cardio exercise I get weird cobweb-like feelings on my lower legs and my right leg stiffens and hurts the longer I do cardio and it takes forever to subside.

    Basically, I feel like I'm done for at this point, Seen Multiple doctors, some of the same one's multiple times and they say there is definitely some weird symptoms there but nothing of major concern and been told multiple times an MRI is not necessary. Not even been recommended medication to help with the Anxiety I am going through day to day so it just makes me feel like none of them are taking me seriously enough.

    I really hope all of you here find the answers you need and the peace of mind you are looking for, I'm not really sure I'll find mine at this point, wishing you all the best in your Journey through this terrible time.



    1 person found this helpful

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