Trigeminal Neuralgia, often referred to as TN, is a health issue that creates extreme pain in the nerve trigeminal nerve, which carries the signals from the face to the brain. TN is considered to be a chronic pain condition and, although it can be managed with treatment, it is still worth learning more about and showing support to those who have it.
And that’s what International Trigeminal Neuralgia Awareness Day is all about!
History of International Trigeminal Neuralgia Awareness Day
The inaugural celebration of International Trigeminal Neuralgia Awareness Day took place more than a decade ago, in 2013, launched by supporters of the cause. A few years later, in 2017, the US House of Representatives passed a resolution naming it as a national day and calling for action by individuals and communities across the country, as well as acknowledgement of those who are making a difference through research and treatments.
Trigeminal neuralgia affects people differently, but usually includes episodes of intense pain that may be shooting or jabbing, similar to something like an electric shock. This type of pain happens on one side of the face at a time, may come with facial spasms and can last for just a few seconds or as long as several minutes at a time. It can be painful simply for a person with TN to eat food, enjoy a beverage, smile, or even have the wind blow across their face.
International Trigeminal Neuralgia Day is supported by the Trigeminal Neuralgia & Me organization that organizes different activities and events in honor of the day and all throughout the year. They also have advocated on behalf of the condition, specifically to the World Health Organization (WHO).
How to Observe International Trigeminal Neuralgia Awareness Day
Looking for ideas on how to participate in and show support for International Trigeminal Neuralgia Awareness Day? Get on board with some of these ideas:
Make it Teal
The support color for TN is teal and many people like to wear that color in honor of International Trigeminal Neuralgia Awareness Day. Whether pinning on a teal colored ribbon, wearing a teal t-shirt, or hanging a teal flag, this is a great time to show some support and raise awareness through conversations about this condition. Many businesses and communities can also show support by lighting up their buildings with the color teal in honor of TN Day.
Learn More About Trigeminal Neuralgia
A good way to show support in honor of International Trigeminal Neuralgia Awareness Day is to become more knowledgeable and informed about this chronic condition. Take a look at some of these different facts about Trigeminal Neuralgia:
Trigeminal neuralgia affects twice as many women as men
Sometimes called tic douloureux, trigeminal neuralgia is most common in people over the age of 50 years
Risk factors for developing TN include high blood pressure or smoking, as well as the existence multiple sclerosis or other inflammatory brain disease
Treatments for trigeminal neuralgia may begin with anticonvulsant medications and some people might need surgery