Aneeta Prem MBE, CEO of TNA, the sole UK charity dedicated to trigeminal neuralgia (TN), urgently calls for nationwide awareness of a condition often referred to as the “suicide disease.” This grim moniker underscores the severity of the excruciating facial pain that TN inflicts, driving sufferers to desperate measures.
Unveiling the Hidden Disability: What is Trigeminal Neuralgia?
TN is an acute, debilitating condition that affects the trigeminal nerve in the face. It is frequently misdiagnosed, with the pain often mistaken for dental problems, leading to unnecessary tooth extractions. The condition has a global prevalence, affecting 1 in 15,000 to 20,000 people, and carries severe mental health consequences, including social withdrawal.
Crisis Calls Surge: The Urgent Need for National Awareness
TNA’s freephone helpline has reported a disturbing increase in calls from individuals on the brink of despair. Some are even contemplating extreme measures, such as pursuing euthanasia options in Switzerland, underscoring the dire need for national recognition and immediate action.
Timely Intervention Required
TN symptoms often worsen with the onset of colder weather. Escalating living costs exacerbate the situation, as some individuals struggle to afford adequate heating, further intensifying their condition.
The “#ShowTN3Fingers” and “#FaceOfTN” Campaigns: How to Get Involved
Endorsed by Aneeta Prem MBE, these campaigns employ a simple yet powerful three-finger gesture symbolising the three branches of the trigeminal nerve. The public can participate by capturing this gesture in photographs or videos and sharing them on social media platforms using the hashtags #FaceOfTN and #ShowTN3Fingers.
Emergency Support Network
TNA has partnered with Samaritans for acute case management, serving as a vital lifeline for those enduring extreme pain. Additional regional support is currently being established.