CBIT therapy via telehealth throughout MA, NH, and VT
Functional Neurological Disorder (FND) is one of the most common neurological diagnoses in the United States and also one of the most confusing and misunderstood conditions. FND is characterized by significant sensory-motor disability although the brain and other structures of the body appear to be functioning properly. It is thought that the nervous system has difficulty sending and receiving messages to and from the body due to emotional dysregulation. FND can present in drastic ways such as blindness, frequent falls, catatonic states, and numbness. A sudden onset of intense and extreme motor and / or vocal tics is often a type of FND called a Functional Motor Disorder. When these unusual behaviors occur in anxious girls and teens who follow social media with inaccurate and exaggerated tic content, the condition is frequently called TikTokTics. This health concern is often mistakenly associated with Tourette Syndrome, however, it actually differs greatly from Tourette's. TikTokTics are an emotion based disorder, while a Tourette diagnosis indicates a neurological condition. Proper diagnosis and a proactive response to mental health concerns is essential to receive effective care.
FND health impairments greatly impact overall quality of life and the ability to perform daily tasks. CBIT Therapy provides support for FND with occupational therapy strategies and training in Comprehensive Behavioral Intervention for Tics, also known as CBIT. Patients learn to shift attention away from their disabling symptoms and to reduce the frequency and intensity of tics through their own actions and abilities.
FND tics can improve following a diagnosis of the disorder, reassurance that symptoms are not caused by an underlying medical problem, and validation that the symptoms are real. Patients also benefit from cutting way back on social media and reducing other stressors. CBIT is also essential to directly stop tics.
Obtaining a diagnosis of FND / Functional Neurological Disorder can feel extremely confusing, frustrating, and overwhelming. Although this condition is common to neurologists in Boston, limited public knowledge about FND makes it difficult for patients and their families to know where to begin seeking support for a sudden onset of vocal or motor tics or other disabling and unexplainable symptoms. FND requires a team approach to clearly identify mental and physical health needs and to outline the steps needed to move forward. Specialists may include neurologists, psychologists, social workers, and physical therapists. Occupational therapists also enable patients to gain independence and wellbeing through a habit reversal program based on CBIT.
Functional Neurological Disorder (FND): a patient's guide neurosymptoms.org
Decoding a Disorder at the Interface of Mind and Brain Scientific American
Pathophysiology of Functional Neurological Disorder BMJ Talk Medicine Podcast
Occupational Therapy Consensus Recommendations For Functional Neurological Disorder Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry
FND Support Group FND Hope US