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Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a condition of the central nervous system, interfering with nerve impulses within the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves.  Roughly three times as many women as men suffer from MS, and whilst most people are diagnosed between the ages of 20-40 it can affect younger and older people.  There may be no cure for MS, but there are a number of treatment options to help manage the symptoms and to slow progression of the disease.  The condition varies in each individual, but most people with MS can expect 95% of the normal life expectancy.

 

Early Signs:

  • Tremors
  • Vision Issues
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Bowel Issues
  • Bladder Issues
  • Numbness
  • Speech Issues
  • Difficulty Walking

 

Types of MS:

  1. Relapsing-Remitting MS
  • Flare-ups & relapses occur when new symptoms present themselves.
  • Eventually advances to secondary progressive MS after 10 to 20 years.
  1. Secondary Progressive MS
  • Symptoms worsen steadily over time, regardless of whether there is period of remission or not.
  • Individually varies and even with treatment, an individual may not function as well as before.
  1. Primary Progressive MS
  • Symptoms gradually worsen over time with no periods of remission or relapse.
  1. Progressive Relapsing MS
  • Symptoms include a steady worsening of the disease from the beginning with no remissions, just acute relapses.

 

 

MS Care Plan

Caring for someone living with MS, involves three aspects:  diet, staying active and home modification.

 

Diet

  • Eliminate dairy and other saturated fats.
  • Omega-3 found in fish has proven to have positive effects.
  • A well-balanced diet can reduce fatigue as well as bowel & bladder issues.

 

Staying Active

  • Weight bearing exercises such as jogging can strengthen your bones.
  • Cardio workouts such as swimming, biking, walking, Pilates and yoga can assist with slowing the progression of MS.

 

Home Modification

  • Eliminate clutter that could lead to tripping.
  • Stairs should be well lit with handrails.
  • Ensure floor surfaces are non-skid and floorboards secure.
  • For bathrooms invest in mobility aids such as grab bars and raised toilet seats.

 

 

Drug Treatments:

 

  • Disease modifying therapies, also called immunotherapies work by modifying the activity of the immune system to slow the frequency and severity of attacks to the central nervous system.
  • Steroid medications are used to control the severity of an MS attack.

 

MS is a variable disease from person to person with regards to severity, symptoms as well as treatments and their side-effects.  Always be guided by your Doctor and Neurologist.  At Homestyle we have residents that we work with to manage their MS symptoms.  If you would like to learn more about our short-term or long-term accommodation, don’t hesitate to contact us here.

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