A physician should be notified if you or someone you know have any of the signs and symptoms associated with multiple sclerosis. Also check with a doctor if you or someone you know have any signs or symptoms that may not be associated but that are of concern. The person may not have multiple sclerosis, but because of the nonspecific nature of this disease, it is best to let a qualified professional make that determination.
Several of the symptoms of multiple sclerosis may send the patient to a hospital's emergency department.
exercise and Diet
Multiple sclerosis affects people differently, and how it affects an individual cannot be predicted. However, improvement of the aspects of health that we have some control over often improves quality of life.
Physical fitness and diet are two aspects of our lives over which we have some control. Studies have shown that for people with multiple sclerosis, regular aerobic exercise (exercise that raises the pulse and respiration rate) and a healthy diet have many benefits, including the following:
A doctor or healthcare provider may refer a person with multiple sclerosis to a nutritionist or physical therapist to help determine an appropriate diet and exercise plan for that person.
Although no definitive studies exist showing that vitamin supplements help multiple sclerosis, their use is not contraindicated unless they are taken in excess. Before taking any vitamin supplement, however, be sure to check with the doctor. Certain supplements are not recommended for people with multiple sclerosis. For example, a supplement that is supposed to boost immune function may be dangerous for people with multiple sclerosis because an overactive immune system is likely the cause of symptoms in multiple sclerosis. A brief overview of some supplements that may, in theory, be beneficial in multiple sclerosis follows:
Multiple sclerosis rehabilitation helps to increase function, improving physical skills and thereby quality of life. Rehabilitation usually focuses on problems with walking and balance, using aids such as a cane or wheelchair, dressing and other personal care, and performing everyday tasks. There are two types of rehabilitation:
For friends and family, a rehabilitation program can teach these persons how to adapt to changes, alter home and work environments for ease of mobility and tasks, and show how they can help others give assistance to their loved ones.
Every person with multiple sclerosis is unique, and a rehabilitation program is best when designed for each particular person. A doctor, neurologist, or other healthcare provider can recommend a rehabilitation therapist.
Being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, as with any chronic illness, is difficult. You may experience the following emotions, which may vary at different points of the disease:
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