Multiple Sclerosis: Do You Have It?
For many people, the idea of having multiple sclerosis (MS) is very worrying. Even if you don’t know anything much about the condition, we all know that it is very serious and can create serious issues surrounding your wellness and wellbeing. For some, you will know relatives who have suffered from the condition and so will understand what it means to live life with it. For others it is not necessarily at all clear, and MS is just two letters that people seem to fear because of the danger associated with it.
But what is MS, and how do you know if you’ve really got it? MS is a disease that affects the central nervous system, meaning fundamentally that it attacks the spinal cord and the brain. In its most common form, which is known as relapsing remitting MS, the disease has symptoms that come and go. These symptoms can usually be anything from mild tingling in the legs, to a severe loss of vision. Obviously, then, there is a huge difference between certain types of MS and this can make it a difficult disease to understand completely.
In fact, one of the biggest problems with MS is that the symptoms are so similar to many other conditions; it can be difficult to diagnose. If you’re very worried that you might suffer from the condition it can be easy to look at your symptoms and feel sure that you’ve got it, when you haven’t. Alternatively, it’s easy to mistake MS for something that’s much less serious and therefore will take a long time to get a real diagnosis. Seek the advice of your doctor if you feel that it is likely that you have the condition and want to find out. They will run the appropriate tests to work out whether you are a sufferer with the condition or not.
Nevertheless, there are some major symptoms that you can watch out for and may be a sign that you need to visit the doctor and find out if you’re a sufferer. One of the most common is actually fatigue. People with MS often find that they are highly tired and lethargic, and this is present in up to 80 per cent of people who have the condition. This is not the same as simple tiredness, you’ll feel completely drained and just want to sit down or sleep.
Another very common symptom is numbness. The numbness can affect many different areas of the body such as the legs, feet, hands and face. This can interfere with many normal aspects of life, which can obviously be very worrying. Numbness is one of the most famous symptoms of MS and can also be one that many people fear the most. Fortunately, the numbness of MS usually subsides on its own and you can return to your normal life. Also, tingling, which is often linked to the sensation of numbness is quite regularly felt by sufferers of MS.
Some sufferers with the condition also find that they have balance or coordination problems. This can mean anything from sudden weakness in a limb to a feeling of unsteadiness on your feet as you walk. It’s also common to find that sufferers of MS have vision problems. This can be anything from double vision or blurred vision, to cases as serious as complete loss of sight for some time. Constipation and bladder weakness are other problems that people who have MS will need to look out for. They are very common in suffers and can cause problems in your general quality of life.
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