Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, often immobilizing disorder that disturbs the central nervous system. It intersects the movement of neurological signals between the body and the brain.
Some of the symptoms of MS include fatigue, loss of mobility, and pain. Unfortunately, the symptoms become more serious as the disease progresses. Other symptoms of MS are memory issues, coordination and balance problems, weakness, and vision problems.
A person with MS also experiences different sensations in the limbs, such as numbness, tingling, and prickling. So far there is no cure for MS, however, various pharmaceutical and alternative treatments are out there.
People with MS feel pain in numerous places throughout their bodies. They have to deal with headaches and facial pain, such as optic nerve pain.
The nerve pain manifests as dysesthesia and paresthesia. That includes electric shocks, burning sensations, pins and needles, sensitivity to touch, intense itching, and stabbing pain.
People with MS also suffer from different types of back pain such as Lhermitte’s sign or the “MS Hug”. Stiffening and cramping also result in muscle spasms in the limbs that can show up without warning and disturb the entire body or muscle groups.
Managing Multiple Sclerosis
Since the cause of MS is still unknown, the treatment for the disease mostly targets its symptoms. Multiple Sclerosis’s symptoms stem from the breakdown of communication between the nerves and the brain.
However, there are various natural and prescribed remedies that can aid in decreasing the impact of the pain. Below are some strategies that will help in managing the pain. Moreover, always consult your doctor or physician before considering any therapy or medical treatments.
1) Medications and Supplements
Medicines such as ibuprofen, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, anticonvulsants, and steroids can be taken to relieve pain. The use of alternative and complementary medicine is in high demand among the people with MS.
Many turn to other non-pharmaceutical treatments when Western medicine falls short to improve their symptoms. Moreover, many MS patients resort to using various supplements in order to better their symptoms, such as zinc, calcium, magnesium, vitamin D, etc.
2) Occupational and Physical Therapy
Therapy for pain that is targeted towards the improvement of function and movement is also becoming popular among MS patients. There are various techniques that are used in order to decrease or avoid pain altogether.
3) Alternative Therapies
Pressure on the body because of stress, spasticity, or immobility can result in the pain of the limbs. Therefore, massage therapy is seen to be useful in bettering leg function for people who suffer from MS.
Studies have shown that massage therapy treatments can notably lower pain in the legs and make progress in the overall health of someone who has MS. Treatments such as acupressure, chiropractic, acupuncture, myofascial release, yoga, meditation, biofeedback, reflexology, and massages are considered unorthodox methods to relieve pain.
However, more and more people with MS are trying these methods and found it to be successful when it comes to relieving their pain.
4) Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Though this technique does not get rid of the pain, it can help in managing your pain response in order for you to function when medicines and other therapies aren’t helpful or available.
5) Medical Devices
Neurostimulation therapy is also becoming popular among people with MS. The benefits of this therapy can be found in implants and devices.
In the end, people with MS always have to live with pain.
However, with the support of a medical professional, people suffering from MS can work towards developing a technique in order to manage their symptoms and enhance their quality of life.