Ataxia is a condition that causes one to move in an uncertain, clumsy, or awkward manner. It is often an indicator of problems in the brain, ears, or nervous system. One of the primary causes includes damage to the parts of the brain that control coordination, mainly the cerebellum. However, it can also occur due to strokes, brain degeneration, and genetic disorders. Read on to know more about ataxia’s early symptoms. The condition can develop over a period of time or suddenly. Listed below are some of the early signs of ataxia. Problems with balance or coordination Usually, balance and coordination problems are one of the early signs. This is the most common and noticeable symptom as it can cause a person to stumble or fall due to a lack of muscle coordination. Ataxia can also cause problems with balance, and it can lead to clumsiness and an unsteady gait. Slurred speech In most cases, people with ataxia may experience problems with their speech along with using their hands and fingers. This can lead to slurred or unclear speech, which can often be incredibly difficult to understand. The patient can experience problems controlling their speech volume, pitch, and rhythm. Hence, if one experiences the development of this symptom, they must seek medical attention at the earliest. Difficulty continuing daily activities People with this condition can face difficulties controlling their muscle movements. This may lead them to discontinue daily activities or fine motor tasks like walking, writing, buttoning and unbuttoning clothes, and picking up small objects. Additionally, one may experience problems while eating and swallowing their food. They may also have sudden muscle spasms or tremors. In such cases, patients are recommended to have a caretaker who can assist them in completing their daily tasks. Slow eye movements Ataxia can also be identified by unusual eye movements. This symptom can be recognized by noticing slower-than-normal eye movement. The condition can also lead to episodes of nystagmus - an eye condition wherein the eyes move repetitively and uncontrollably. Ataxia is a degenerative disease whose symptoms are similar to other health conditions. Those experiencing any of the above-mentioned early signs must consult a healthcare professional at the earliest.