Ryan Williams shares his experience with essential tremor.

Ryan Williams shares his experience with essential tremor, at the NTF Essential Tremor Open Day March 2018 in Oxford.

Did you first think that you have to travel 60 59 60 yeah first thing i was diagnosed with it when i was 17 so there must have been a year’s worth trying to figure out what it was i was just speaking to the other guys and there so a younger generation you think it’s anxiety i think first yeah you’re just nervous i’m an actor so i was at additions or singing lessons

And classes and things like that and it was noticeable that i was nervous and that was just all i had for a year was you’re just a nervous i was all shy anyway but you you must just be nervous because you’re always on stage or performing so usually just chinking yeah but when i remember quite distinctly being in a store and you know you’re 16 17 you paying for

Things yourself here there’s no parental guidance anymore and i was trying to give someone change and just they asked me why i was shaking so much because accountant change is always an engram people think and that was when they’re deciding to go and tell my parents and see a doctor how did they diagnose they do the usual sort of test so they get need to hold paper

And hold your hands oh they noticed mines is a lot worse than my left hand and it isn’t my right they didn’t do any sort of mri scan gee you’re a lot of that they lose because it’s just no prevalent really small and i don’t i didn’t grow up with anyone else who was talking about an essential tremor my father has it but i don’t think he ever got diagnosed with it

Always assumed i just had shaky hands you know so he’s started to pay more attention to it because i’m now involved with it and have a sort of always been trying to work around it and the doctor offered me propranolol be a blogger and sent only maybe 20 or 30% of the cases that try this see some significant improvement so i was on it for maybe a year and helped a

Little but it alters you in different ways i felt a little l from taking them just spiraled me in depression and things like that you know because you start to question if you can continue doing the thing that you loved in which for me was being on stage and landing scripts and daily tasks just started to become difficult so i never felt like anyone supported it i

Just assumed that i had to learn how to deal with it myself so even painting which i used to do you would prop your hand up on a table it’s amazing when you see how kids deal with it because they don’t really understand what’s going on but they somehow managed to find ways to make it work for themselves and that’s what if the game for me the last ten years was okay

Well people are telling me there’s no cure what things can i do to make it easier it’s a relaxation as jackie will probably talk about it today mindfulness constantly being aware of it you know lay off things like coffee and alcohol and anything else you know you need to understand that things that you could in your body are gonna alter your chemistry and there’s

Already a neurological thing going on with you so you sort of have to pay slightly more attention to than maybe the average joe walking around and once you do it for long enough it becomes natural you know if people offer me a coffee no i think well we’re gonna have to be in half an hour if i have to be on stage or shaking hands with people i don’t want to be on

It once i’m done with everything hello myself to have that cup of coffee or glass of wine that just relaxed so that was um that was me i was 17 college and stuff and i remember being 17 and i left home and i started working around about that time i didn’t immediately in the university or drama school which was going to be the obvious route for me at the time and

There was a real element of fear and that’s why i always try and tell younger generations of people who are the same age as me just if you’re starting up a life or a career or you’re about to leave home it’s already a very isolating condition i think for a lot of people you ask any of the younger generations and they’ll tell you it feels like you’re on your own

Which is why i’m glad everyone’s here today to talk about it but with jobs as well and like now i’m a bartender which i would never have done when i was 17 or 18 because of the fear of having to hand someone a drink and be like this or delivering plates i just thought you know what that’s a main field that i don’t want to enter into so actively avoided it ended up

Doing more office jobs things where i could take administration or it and it was fine but it was masking the problem you’re not accepting it if you’re doing that you’re trying to stay away from it and then the other side of the career is acting so you go into an audition it’s uranium in the morning you hold a sheet of paper and you shake people ask you you had

A heavy name the name before you know they think maybe you know drinking score jackson doesn’t have that very much but the again you get used to you know telling people i’ve got a tremor but because it’s not spoken about enough no everyone’s comfortable doing that took me a long time to be comfortable doing and i know it’s hard because you think people treat you

Definitely but they won’t you know i think if you’re honest about what’s going on it’s better off than then making some sort of assumption that you never saw your tired or you’re hungover or on drugs which i’ve had before for people with immunity if you’re honest with folk and we’ve given our cards today that’s sort of tell you what the tremor is and that you

Have one making people aware of it is the key so i’d rather people did that i don’t think is taking away opportunities for me you know and i don’t want kids especially to feel like they can’t be a doctor or a pilot because they have shaky hands there are ways around it there are people who will help you with it there are there’s technologies every day now that are

Coming into play that will help you with it so for me the the mission statement knows trying to let those younger generations know that it’s not the end of the world even if you don’t want to talk about it you don’t have to i think you shouldn’t but get help i definitely spent a long time trying to help myself i don’t think that’s the way we go about it i think

It’s better to gordon speak or even just go and listen those kids here today they’re new to it sort of deer-in-the-headlights feeling about the whole thing but at least they’re here and they may hear something that strikes the minutes about a year the brain stimulation procedures something might just trigger them and they want to research it more talk about i keep

Saying talk about it that’s all that is for me now except i just want to share the story you got any advice for anyone who suffers from true i know other people are and we’ve got chloe here who’s done the vlog and jack he was letting me know about someone who i think roll an article about it when they were 17 and then went back in business he did when they were

27 just sort of 10 years later and ever be changed then affected it and i wish i had done stuff like that so touch-typing seems to help a lot of people with essential tremor you know if you’re if you’re in school and you’re having trouble writing tell your games counselor tell your principal tell someone that you’re having trouble with this and that you’d have a

Tremor i wish i had done it in school i wish i had since i’m struggling right here my handwriting’s always connect crazy cool again people just don’t know that your teacher may have never heard of tremor if you see something you

Transcribed from video
Ryan Williams shares his experience with essential tremor. By National Tremor Foundation