10 Things People with Multiple Sclerosis Want You to Know
“Life is about the journey and not the destination.” There is no way we can predict what will happen tomorrow. The only day we have is today, right now. No matter if you have MS, diabetes, arthritis, or any other chronic condition, it is important to live each day to its fullest. It is about taking baby steps, not pushing yourself to the breaking point. You do not have to let your condition stop you from doing something, just do it smartly and differently if you have to. No one knows your body like you do — not even your doctor. By letting it get used to new ways of doing things, you gain back the power to decide what is right for you.
For some people, a diagnosis of MS happens after symptoms begin suddenly. Others may experience symptoms on and off for years and still have trouble finding the cause. A person diagnosed with MS may feel angry, surprised, sad, worried, or even depressed. Some may even feel a lack of emotion, as if it is happening to someone else.
The reality is that MS will make its presence known and its power felt. It wants full command and it can unhinge emotions so that tears and laughter erupt with less control. People with MS have to maintain a well-balanced diet, exercise on a regular basis, get plenty of rest, and schedule weekly doctor appointments. They become reliant on a healthy routine, because it keeps them protected from the enemy disease.
Everyone is affected differently by their MS and so their needs will be different, too. There is no one formula for a universal “best approach.” MS is real and unpredictable. It is not contagious, though it is invisible and still has no cure. It can be stressful and a constant battle for everyone. A person with MS needs emotional and practical support; they need family, friends, and medical professionals to support them in their daily battles. Most important, they need you to be willing to help, to be patient, and to be sensitive to their individual needs.
There are currently about 400,000 people in the United States and about 2.5 million people around the world who have multiple sclerosis (MS). For those who do not know that much about it, MS is a complex and unpredictable neurological condition. It causes a wide range of potential symptoms, including fatigue, vision problems, muscle spasms, and difficulty walking.
To raise awareness of MS and offer an insight into what it is like to live with such a condition, here are 10 things people with MS want you to know.
Multiple sclerosis is a medical condition that tends to cause an impact on the brain as well as the spinal cord. A few of the early symptoms related to this condition are numbness in certain parts of the body, tingling sensation, blurry eyesight, and feelings of weakness. In this particular medical condition, the immune system is known to attack the myelin, which is the protective sheath covering the nerve fibers, thereby leading to problems in proper communication between the brain and the rest of the body. There are certain things one should be aware about this medical condition:
- Not all MS patients will experience the same symptoms; they may differ from patient to patient. The symptoms as well as their severity will not be the same for each individual.
- There is no cure for MS. The only treatment available is to help the individual find relief from their symptoms. One will need to adapt to this medical condition and try to make changes in their lifestyle to live better.
- Fatigue is known to be one of the common symptoms of MS. Due to this, the individual’s cognitive skills, such as concentration and memory, are negatively impacted; they often find it hard to remember names or find the right words while conversing with someone.
- MS is not something that can spread from one person to another. It is neither inherited nor passed from parent to child. There are still debates on this issue as to whether or not it is passed genetically.
- MS cannot be termed a life-threatening medical condition. If the individual follows a healthy lifestyle, then their life expectancy can be the same as non-sufferers, although there would be certain symptoms they would have to deal with.
- MS is said to be a progressive disease, and many times, patients go through relapses.
- When one is suffering from MS and is also pregnant, there would not be any impact on the child. It has been observed that many women undergo remission during their last trimester. It is important to speak to the doctor openly about it.
- It is not true that those with MS cannot carry out sexual intercourse. Though MS may bring about certain changes in one’s sexual function, there are different ways in which sexual pleasure can be derived without doing all the hard work.
- It is always helpful to support such individuals who have MS rather than making them feel like a burden. It is important to understand their needs and slow oneself down in order to come to terms with them.
- Feeling sorry for MS patients is the last thing they want. Hence, it is better to learn more about this medical condition and to treat them with the respect they deserve. Even carrying out daily menial tasks would be too tiring for them, so, in such cases, it is better to understand them rather than make them feel that they are slow or burdensome.