Aneeta Prem MBE, CEO of TNA, the UK’s sole charity dedicated to trigeminal neuralgia (TN), is urgently launching the “#ShowTN3Fingers” campaign to raise national awareness of a condition often referred to as the “suicide disease.” This term underscores the excruciating facial pain caused by TN, which can drive sufferers to desperate measures.
Unveiling the Hidden Disability: What is Trigeminal Neuralgia?
TN is an acute and debilitating condition that affects the trigeminal nerve in the face. Misdiagnosis is common, as the pain is often mistaken for dental issues, leading to unnecessary tooth extractions. This condition has a global prevalence, affecting 1 in 15,000 to 20,000 people, and it can have severe mental health consequences, including social withdrawal.
Crisis Calls Surge: The Urgent Need for National Awareness
TNA’s freephone helpline has seen a troubling increase in calls from individuals on the brink of despair. Some are even considering extreme measures, such as seeking euthanasia options in Switzerland. This underscores the critical importance of national recognition and immediate action.
Timely Intervention Required
TN symptoms tend to worsen with the arrival of colder weather. Rising living costs exacerbate the situation, as some individuals struggle to afford sufficient 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 profound three-finger gesture that symbolises 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 with the hashtags #FaceOfTN and #ShowTN3Fingers.
Emergency Support Network
TNA has partnered with Samaritans for acute case management, serving as a vital lifeline for those experiencing extreme pain. Additional regional support systems are currently in development.