Living life with a chronic illness is definitely not easy. But I do my best to push through all the barriers this illness puts in front of me! In my heart and mind, I believe maintaining a positive outlook on all situations in life will carry us through to much better times! I hope you find the information that I provide both helpful and inspirational!
Happy Friday y’all! How was your week? Even though it was a shorter week, it felt so much longer than the normal week. I do think short weeks feel longer because we are trying to fit everything into the four-day week that we would do during a normal workweek. What do you think? I can say that work is finally getting busier which I prefer because it makes the day go by much faster and when things are slow, the days drag by and feel like they are never going to end.
Now that we made it through the week and are now able to enjoy the weekend, we need to let any negative feelings the week cause go so we can enjoy the insanely short weekend. I do know the quote I am sharing is not what I would normally share on a Friday, but I feel like it speaks volumes and loudly! I have thought this for a long time now, but think it is getting much worse because even though it is 2021, so many are way too judgmental of others. I feel strongly that color, race, ethnicity, sexual preference, and anything else being judged is very wrong. As the years move forward, I think we should be progressing with the times and we should be much fairer, and equality should be for everyone!
The numbers of COVID are suggesting there is a decrease in the spread, which is probably because so many are getting vaccinated. Unfortunately, there are so many that are resistant to getting vaccinated. Of course, some are avoiding getting vaccinated because they do not believe it is serious or maybe it is political reasons, which make no sense to me, but it is those refusing the vaccination that are dangerous. I have had both vaccines, but I also have not been tested to ensure I am safe. I cannot help but worry a little, but nowhere near as much as I was when COVID first was introduced.
Thank you for visiting my site today! I hope you have a wonderful and safe weekend doing what brings you the most joy. I would love to read your comments, which I will respond to as quickly as I can. I am still trying to get back into my normal routine with posts, but I have felt so exhausted lately, which is probably because of the temperatures. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!
It is one of last days of May and the summer heat is already extreme and dominating the south parts of the United States. For those of us living with Multiple Sclerosis, we all know that heat is one of our biggest enemies. Unfortunately, where I live in the United States, we are already fighting with temperatures in the 90’s, so I can only imagine how hot it will be in the dead of summer, but I am dreading it!
There are a lot of people that live with Multiple Sclerosis that experience temporary worsening of symptoms when the weather is exceedingly hot and or humid. Unfortunately, it only takes a quarter to a half-degree increase in the body’s core temperature for someone’s symptoms to worsen. The elevation in temperatures impairs the ability of a demyelinated nerve to conduct electrical impulses. Simple activities such as sunbathing, exercising, or taking a hot bath or shower all can have the same effects. Some have noticed their vision becoming blurred when they get overheated, which is a phenomenon known as Uhthoff’s sign.
Even though the heat can cause symptoms to worsen temporarily, it does not cause additional disease activity. The symptoms that worsen when overheated will improve once you cool down. May years ago, before there was better testing for MS, doctors used the “hot bath test” to diagnose MS. When a doctor suspected a person had MS, they would immerse the individual in a hot tub of water, and the appearance of or worsening of neurologic symptoms confirmed the person had MS.
While temperatures are increasingly warmer, it is crucial for those with MS and experiencing heat sensitivity to do what they can to combat these challenges. The following are the best ways to deal with the heat:
1. During extreme heat and humidity, stay inside in the air conditioning. There are specific times during the day when the heat is more intense, so it may be beneficial to pay close attention to the weather. Normally, the heat is not as bad during the early mornings, but as the day goes on it gets much hotter.
2. Utilize cooling produces, such as cooling vests, wraps, and bandanas. These products can be purchase online and be extremely helpful when you do need to be outside, even for short times. The following are a few vendors that offer these products:
5. If you exercise, do so either in a cool pool or in a cooler environment.
It has been a little while, but the National Multiple Sclerosis Society is where I was able to get mine from and they are helpful. If all else fails, you can always google these products and I am sure you will find something that will work for you. As you already know, everyone is different and has different challenges with MS, but if you are anything like I am the weather poses awful issues. It does not matter if it is hot or cold temperatures, they both cause me to experience issues. The cold causes me to tense up, which makes my pain much worse. The heat causes me to feel even more fatigue and does affect my vision.
I hope this information will help you while dealing with the extreme heat. I know a few of you might be in a country that is not dealing with the summer months right now, but for those of you that are do everything you can to stay inside or at least in the air conditioning. If I must leave the house now, I try doing so at night after the sun has gone down or in the morning before it gets too hot. Of course, for some doctor’s appointments, I cannot do anything about the times, but I do stay hydrated. I love Fiji water because I think it tastes much better than any other water. I also like Grape or Kiwi Strawberry Propel waters. I honestly cannot remember the last time I drank a caffeinated beverage and feel much better without them! If I drink any soda during the day, it is at night with dinner but only one.
Thank you for visiting my site today. I do look forward to reading any comments or additional advice you might have. I will respond to all comments as quickly as I can. I hope you are having a nice three-day weekend and hope you are staying safe. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!
As y’all already know March was Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month. Even though March is almost over, MS for me and everyone else living with this illness will continue to battle with the challenges that come along with it. With that being said, I do want to share a few additional posts to further explain the struggles that Multiple Sclerosis creates.
One thing common with those with Multiple Sclerosis is heat intolerance. Simply taking a hot shower, spending too much time in the sun, or possibly making a hot meal because the stove and oven can make the kitchen extremely hot. The reason people with MS are sensitive to heat and temperature changes is that MS causes nerves to lose their conductive coating, which is referred to as a myelin-sheath.
Heat issues may cause a person with MS to have an escalation of symptoms such as dizziness and/or increased heart rate. I am going to share 6 tips that may help you to defeat the brutality of the heat enemy. Some of these tips might seem like common sense, but they are important to mention, or at least I think it is.
Logically, this makes perfect sense, but the warm summer months are closing in on us relatively fast and this needs to be very well understood. Staying inside with the air conditioner or at least fans may contain MS symptoms. Be sure to pay close attention to the forecast and avoid outdoor get-togethers when it is too hot. It will be much better for you and your health to stay inside when the temperatures and humidity increase because you do not want the symptoms to get too awful.
Utilize Cooling Products:
There are numerous cooling products available online and in stores. The MS Society has cooling vests, wrist, ankle, neck, and head cooling packs. These are fantastic cooling packs that can help you to tolerate the heat and even make picnics possible. Something as simple as a cloth dipped in cold water and applied to your head can make a remarkable difference in the way you feel.
Ice Cold Beverages:
On those insanely hot summer days, there is nothing better than ice-cold water with or without lemon. It is amazing what powers and benefits can be had with liquids. Aside from an ice-cold beverage, you may also experience relief from popsicles, ice cream, or frozen yogurt. To save time walking to the kitchen at night and searching for something cold to drink, try freezing a bottle of water and place it beside your bed. This will provide you the much needed cool down without leaving the comfort of your bed.
Cool Down in the Pool:
As the temperatures start increasing, spending time in a pool when possible can give you the cooldown needed. Not only will a pool help you cool down but provide you with some exercises that can be done easily and without high impact on your body that might cause you extra pain. For additional cooling powers, keeping your wet swimsuit on after leaving the pool can be wonderful because it will also keep you nice and cool!
Plug in a fan or fans:
The fan you use does not need to be high-tech or fancy to offer you cooling benefits. A simple oscillating fan that is easy to move to other rooms can provide you great and fast relief from the evil heat. A ceiling fan helps to circulate air, which can give useful relief from the heat as well.
Lighten Up Clothing:
It can be astounding how our choices of clothing can make a considerable difference. Thinking in layers of clothing when we get dressed might serve you as a benefit. Dressing in lightweight and easy to remove clothes allows you to remove layers, as necessary.
I hope the information provided in this post was helpful for you. In the southern state that I live in, I can speak from experience on how awful the heat makes me feel. It typically starts getting a little too hot for me in April and previously when I did leave the house, I would be overheated just walking to my car. A few years ago, I did reach out to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and they sent me a few cooling products that are phenomenal, and I am thankful to have them. Of course, over the past year, I hardly leave the house, but hopefully, things will become safe again soon.
Thank you for visiting my site today. I know I have been a little off with my typical posts, but life and fatigue sometimes get in the way. I would love the opportunity to read what you thought about this information and will do my best to respond to all comments as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!
Multiple Sclerosis can be a challenging illness to live with, but there are often ways to manage the difficulties. Many things can trigger symptoms, but there are also ways to avoid many of these triggers. It takes time to understand what exactly triggers your symptoms and then to discover the best way to avoid them. Just like each person experiences MS differently, each person will have different triggers and ways to combat those triggers. Of course, please remember that I am not a doctor or medical professional, I am just another person living with MS, and have researched the topic. Today, I am going to share 10 triggers and ways to avoid these triggers.
1. Stress: We all experience stress in our life but having a chronic condition like Multiple Sclerosis can create an entirely new source of stress. Other types of stress can be a result of work, personal relationships, or financial struggles. Too much stress for anyone can cause difficult times, but too much stress for someone with MS can contribute to the worsening of symptoms.
Ways to avoid stress might include finding a relaxing, stress-reducing activity that takes your mind off stress. This activity is anything you find enjoyable because this is for YOU and YOUR health. A few things that may appeal to you are yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises. These practices can help you to relax and obliterate risks for causing symptoms to worsen.
2. Heat: Any form of heat whether it be from the sun, sauna or, a hot tub can be too extreme for people with Multiple Sclerosis. This can often time lead to an exacerbation of symptoms. From my own experience, heat is the enemy which is difficult because I love the beach. I think my saving grace at the beach is the ocean breeze!
It is not always easy to avoid the heat, especially where I live in the south. The best way to avoid this is to keep your house cool and purchase extra fans. Also, on days when there is extreme heat avoid direct sunlight, wear light loose clothing, and stay in the shade as much as possible. Steer clear of saunas, hot tubs, and those hot yoga studios.
3. Childbirth: Many women with MS experience a relapse after giving birth. As a matter of fact, 20-40% of women endure a relapse in the period of time after giving birth. Thankfully, my husband and I do not have children, so I have not experienced this issue. Of course, no one can prevent a relapse after childbirth, but this would be a time to take some steps to reduce how severe the impact is. During the immediate days after childbirth, lean on family and friends to assist with your new bundle of joy so you may get rest and take care of yourself. This can help your body recover more effectively.
4. Becoming Sick: Certain types of infection can cause a relapse and MS can create certain types of other infections. Infection such as the flu or even something as simple as the common cold may cause MS symptoms to worsen.
Avoiding sickness can be challenging, especially with COVID spreading like wildfire. Even with the numerous challenges involved with avoiding getting sick, living a healthy lifestyle can help with preventing infections and other illnesses. It is also helpful to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds multiple times a day and distance yourself from anyone that is sick, especially if you are experiencing a relapse.
5. Some Vaccines: While most vaccines are safe and recommended for those with Multiple Sclerosis, certain vaccines contain live pathogens, which can create the risk of exacerbating symptoms. If you are experiencing a relapse or taking certain medications, consult with your neurologist before getting any vaccines because it might be in your best interest to postpone the vaccine. Your doctor will know the best way to handle this and will advise you regarding vaccines.
I will be completely honest with y’all with the medication I take for MS, Gilenya, I was advised years ago to not get vaccines. Of course, that was 20 years ago and so many changes with medications with additional research. I had always been leery of getting anything and it was not due to the needles, I just feared for negative interactions. However, my current neurologist told me things with the Gilenya had changed over the years and the only vaccines that were not safe were the ones that were live vaccines, and I was able to get the COVID vaccine and I can get the flu vaccine if I decide I want it. My neurologist did highly recommend I get the flu vaccine, but I am not in any rush to do this!
6. Vitamin D Deficiency: At least one study discovered that people with lower vitamin D levels have an increased risk of relapse than someone with adequate vitamin D levels. It has been suggested that Vitamin D can protect against developing MS, but even more research that revealed Vitamin D affects the disease as it is needed.
The best way to prevent the issue of Vitamin D deficiency is to make sure your doctor regularly checking your Vitamin D levels. There are supplements available, some foods have high amounts of Vitamin D, and safe sun exposure can help increase and maintain your levels. However, while supplements may seem safe and legit, it is best to discuss any supplements with your doctor before beginning them to ensure there are not any negative interactions and they will provide suitable results.
7. Inadequate Amount of Sleep: Sleep has an important role in our overall health. The body utilizes sleep to repair the brain and restore other areas that have been damaged. When we do not get sufficient sleep, our body does not get the necessary time to rest and rejuvenate. Too much fatigue can trigger symptoms and/or make symptoms worsen. With muscle spasms, pain, and tingling, MS can make sleep rather troublesome.
Considering how vital sleep is for our health, it is crucial to discuss sleep issues with your doctor. Bring the issue to your doctor’s attention can help determine if any other conditions causing the sleep struggles.
8. Poor Diet: A well-balanced and healthy diet, along with regular exercise can be beneficial for avoiding relapses and/or reduces Multiple Sclerosis symptoms. A diet considering of processed foods will not supply your body with the nutrition that is required.
To avoid developing a poor diet habit, working with a dietitian to discover the best healthy eating plan you can carry on with could be extremely helpful. Although, research is not clear as to the best diet is for people with MS, eating healthy foods can have a positive impact on everyone’s health. Concentrate on good sources of protein, healthy fats, and carbohydrates is one of the best ideas.
9. Certain Medications & Stopping Medications Too Soon: The truth is some medications that can make symptoms worse. Your neurologist will need to monitor all medications you are taking to ensure there are no interactions that can trigger symptoms to worsen. Even though some medications can have negative side effects, this does not mean you should stop any abruptly. You should always consult with your neurologist before starting or stopping all medications as to not increase your risk of a relapse.
The 10th Trigger Can Be Pushing Yourself Too Far & Too Hard: As already stated, fatigue is a common symptom for those living with Multiple Sclerosis. With that said, if you have MS and continuously push yourself to go with too little sleep and/or overwork yourself physically and/or emotionally, you might face ramifications. The combination of overexertion and fatigue can trigger a relapse or make a relapse last longer.
The best way to avoid a relapse due to pushing yourself too hard is, be easier on yourself or at least listen to the cues your body is telling you. Start slowing down when you become tired. Rest as much as possible when you can. Understand that pushing yourself to exhaustion, the recovery will take that much longer. It is important to know that our body does know when it has had enough and when it needs to rest and take a break!
I hope the information provided in this post will be beneficial whether you have MS or another chronic condition. Living with any chronic condition can be complex and I am only way too familiar with Multiple Sclerosis, and with March being Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month, I wanted to be able to share as much useful information as I could.
Thank you for visiting my site today! I hope you have a nice and safe weekend! I am looking forward to reading your comments and I promise to respond as quickly as I possibly can! Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!
In previous posts, I have explained that Multiple Sclerosis is an autoimmune and neurologist illness. What this means is MS affects the nerves, but also the body’s defenses to fight disease fails and begins to attack the cells. The immune system attacks the body’s myelin when you have MS. Myelin is a protective substance covering the nerves, so when this happens it leaves the nerves unprotected. The nerves being unprotected makes them vulnerable to damage, which causes them to not function as they would if there was healthy myelin. The damaged nerves create a wide range of symptoms that vary in seriousness.
A few additional facts regarding MS to understand are:
1.Multiple Sclerosis is a chronic condition, which means it is a lifelong condition and it does not currently have a cure. It is important to understand that even though there is not a cure, it is not fatal. There are 2.3 million people worldwide living with MS and they all have the standard life expectancy. It is only in rare cases there might be complications severe enough to shorten the life of a person. Overall, with MS most symptoms can be regulated with medication, adjustment to lifestyle, or both.
2. Multiple Sclerosis affects younger adults, and often women. Although MS can be diagnosed in children and older adults, people are mainly diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50. Women are two to three times more likely to develop MS than men. If the person is diagnosed is over the age of 50, this is normally called late-onset MS. It can be challenging for older adults to find a diagnosis of MS due to other age-related conditions having similar symptoms.
3. Multiple Sclerosis can be arduous to diagnose. Often symptoms and single tests are not enough to be able to make an accurate MS diagnosis. The challenges are due to the symptoms mirroring the symptoms of other conditions. Numerous tests that can be used to rule out other potential causes of the symptoms a person is experiencing, which include:
A. Blood tests to rule out Lyme disease, which can trigger the same symptoms of MS.
B Neurologist Exam
C. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
D. Visual evoked potential (VEP) test, which looks for impaired transmission present along the optic nerve pathways.
E. Cerebral Spinal Fluid (CSF) Analysis is a way to look for conditions affecting the brain and spine. The CSF analysis is a series of laboratory tests performed on a sample of the CSF, which is a clear fluid that cushions and delivers nutrients to the CNS.
F. Optical coherence tomography (OCT)
4. The symptoms involved with Multiple Sclerosis vary and the list is long. The truth is, there is no such thing as typical symptoms because everyone that lives with this illness experiences it differently. Some symptoms may simply come and go, or some may regain a lost function, such as bladder control. A few possible symptoms include numbness and tingling, vision problems, balance and mobility issues, and slurred speech. The unforeseeable pattern of symptoms is due to whatever nerves are being attacked by the immune system at any given time. Most things are just unpredictable, and we must deal with the issues as they come up.
5. Multiple Sclerosis is comprised of relapses and remissions. Remission is the period of time when the symptoms have improved. Remission does not indicate the MS is gone, but these periods may last days, weeks, months, or in some cases years. Relapse or exacerbation is the incidence of a new symptom or worsening of an old symptom. This occurrence can be mild or severe enough to interfere with the ability to function. No two exacerbations are the same, so it is important to consult with your neurologist when you deal with one.
6. There is a cognitive part to Multiple Sclerosis. All the damage MS causes to the nerves can also impact critical thinking and other cognitive (mental) skills. It is not unheard of or abnormal for people with MS to have issues with memory and or finding the right words to convey what they are thinking. A few other cognitive effects may include:
*An inability to concentrate or pay attention
*Decreased problem-solving skills
*Difficulty with spatial relations, which means the ability to perceive two or more objects positioned in space relative to oneself and in relation to each other.
*It is normal for cognitive problems to create frustration, depression, and/or anger, but these are issues your doctor can help monitor and manage.
7. Multiple Sclerosis has been labeled as an “invisible illness” or “silent disease”, which makes sense because at face value people with MS look no different than those without MS. Symptoms such as blurred vision, sensory problems, and chronic pain cannot be seen by anyone else. However, some people that do require special accommodations, even though they do not have mobility issues and appear to be fine. One reason why MS has been labeled a “silent disease” is that even during remission, the disease is still, unfortunately, progressing, which has been referred to as “silent progression” of MS.
8. Staying cool whenever possible is greatly beneficial. Heat intolerance is another common issue that can cause an exacerbation of symptoms. People with MS may experience an increase of symptoms from hot weather or sun exposure, fever or illness, hot baths, or showers, and overheating from exercise.
It might be helpful to use fans and air conditioning, cool drinks, and/or icy compresses to stay cool. Wearing layers of lightweight clothing that is easy to remove may serve as a benefit as well. Also, utilizing a cooling vest that can be purchased online. Although people might experience a heat-related relapse, it is important to understand that heat does not cause MS to progress any faster.
9. Vitamin D plays a vital role in Multiple Sclerosis. Research has indicated a link between Vitamin D and MS, which showed the nutrient can function as a protector against MS and possibly lead to fewer relapses. Sunlight triggers the production of Vitamin D in the body, but that sun exposure can also lead to heat-induced symptoms. There are plenty of ways to increase Vitamin D without sun exposure which include fortified milk, orange juice, cod liver oil, salmon, tuna, and eggs or there are also Vitamin D supplements available.
I hope you found this information useful for yourself or someone you know. Please just keep in mind that I am not a doctor or medical professional, I am just someone that has lived with MS for over 20 years. I have experienced most of what is in this post, but that one thing I did not do when I was diagnosed was have the CSF Analysis. I have heard it is not pleasant, but people do live through it. There are still a few days left in the month of March and I do plan on doing a few more posts for Multiple Sclerosis Awareness. I do feel like there is a lot of information available and it needs to be shared with as many people as possible!
Thank you for visiting my site today. I always appreciate your continued support and truly love reading your comments. I hope you are having a good week and you are staying safe because COVID is still a threat. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!
Since Friday afternoon I have been battling with a nasty headache, which I think was more an evil migraine. It started when I was still working and I had to force myself through the last part of the day, which even though I work at home was difficult to make it until 5:00. I know some would say the migraine and pain came from stress, but I actually disagree with this. Yes, I did get a little worked up about a loan I was working because I was a little confused about what I had to do next, but I did get everything figured out and was fine.
I have been working with my new company for three weeks and I still love my job. During the initial few weeks after training, we are all supposed to work on the loans that are assigned to us, and then the team lead would review our work before we could proceed with changing the status to “complete”. Well on Friday while I was dealing with the start of my nasty migraine, my team lead told me I did not need to have my work reviewed anymore and could proceed on my own. I am not sure why I was so shocked by this because I do understand the work, but to be told this during the end of my third week was a good feeling and made me feel confident. This is the same team lead that told me during my second week on the job I was going to be his “rock star”, so I guess I have a lot to live up to!
When I did finally make it through my horrible painful day on Friday, I laid down with an ice pack on my head around 11:00 PM and did not really get up until late Saturday. Not only am I dealing with a migraine from hell, but my entire body aches. I do not know where this is all coming from. It has been incredibly hot in the south, but I do not leave my house so I don’t know why the heat would be causing me so many issues.
As I am trying to write this I can feel the pain starting back up again, not that it actually stopped it just eased up some. Dealing with pain is not easy and can cause some stress. Trying to understand why the pain has to be this severe is something that can’t be understood. Normally, I can deal with pain, but I am not able to deal with head pain.
Headaches/migraines will have me in the bed with an ice pack and nothing helps. It has been a frustrating weekend that is almost over. I can only hope the headache/migraine will leave me alone as the week starts. I promise I have done everything I know to get rid of the pain, but at this point, nothing is working. I am staying hydrated and even trying to eat.
Do y’all ever get massive migraines or pain in general? How do y’all deal with this? I would like to believe I am a strong person, but I am losing that strength dealing with all this pain. Any advice y’all may have would be greatly appreciated.
Thank y’all for visiting my site today. I do hope your weekend has been lovely, you have been able to enjoy it, and you have stayed safe. Please know that even though I am struggling with pain issues right now, I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and many positive vibes!
Happy Monday y’all! I hope you had a nice enjoyable and safe weekend! Are you ready to start the new week? The new week will bring us a chance to begin again and anything that happened last week is in the past.
How was the weather where you are? Where I live, it rained for a little while on Saturday and again on Sunday, both days were insanely HOT! There once was a time that I loved summer time because I love the beach, but I don’t know if it is because I am getting older or if temperatures are getting hotter or maybe it is the combination but I dread summertime now. In the south where I live, you are not able to walk outside for one second and not feel like you just took another shower. The daytime highs are normally in the high 90’s, so it really is miserable.
I think it is always important to begin our weeks with a positive mindset. I mean we all know there is enough negativity in the world, but we have a choice to not get involved with this! This is one reason why I love sharing a motivating quote with y’all every Monday. I hope the quote I am sharing today will serve as a motivator to you and that your week will get better with each day! I would love the chance to read what you thought about this quote!!
I hope your week starts off well and you are feeling the best you possibly can. I am so glad that I do not have to leave my house with as hot as it is going to be this week. My previous MS Specialist always used to tell me how awful the heat was for me and I never wanted to believe him, but he was very correct! The heat makes me feel terrible and causes twice as many dizzy spells, which isn’t any fun. I hope you are able to stay cool and not have to deal with temperatures that are too bad!
Thank y’all for visiting my site today! I always appreciate your continued support and love reading your comments! Please stay safe when you are not in the comfort and safety of your home. I also hope you never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and many positive vibes!
I hope y’all had a wonderful and very safe weekend! Monday’s are never all that exciting, but they do offer us a new week with a new beginning! My week is starting at the car dealership trying to get my air conditioning fixed before I have to drive an hour and a half on Friday for a doctor’s appointment when it will be in the high 80’s. I am sure y’all know by now that this virus scares the heck out of me, so I will be very cautious with a mask and maintain social distancing! One thing I am not able to tolerate is heat because not only does it make me a little frustrated and a little mean, but it can increase negative health issues for me.
As we begin our week, I think we all could use something motivating to start the week off on a positive note! I do hope the quote I am sharing with y’all will serve you well and your week will only get better as the days go on. I would of course love to read what you thought about this quote and if you found it motivating!
Things are a little crazy right now in the United States, as I am sure y’all have heard about on the news. I find it incredibly heartbreaking how many innocent people have been killed by not only police, but other American people. It seems there are still way too many people that are nothing more than racist, which I do not understand at all! Y’all already know this about me as well, I believe everyone was created equally and have a beating heart and should be treated equally and with respect! I am working on a separate post about these issues and it will be posted in the next few days.
Thank y’all for visiting my site today! I always appreciate all your support and kindness! I hope y’all have a wonderful day and you are continuing to stay safe anytime you are not at home. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, and many positive vibes!
An exacerbation of Multiple Sclerosis can also be referred to as an attack, a relapse or an episode. All the terms all mean the same thing which is the occurrence of new symptoms or worsening of an old symptom. These range from mild to severe enough to interfere with a person’s ability to function in daily life. The exacerbation will follow the following criteria:
Previous symptoms become more severe or new symptoms have started to show.
Symptoms last longer than 24 hours, commonly lasting days or weeks.
A total of 30 days has passed since the start of the previous relapse.
Healthcare provider has ruled out all other possible causes for an exacerbation, including infection, heat, and stress.
It is critical to know when this is happening because early treatment can help reduce the impact on the person’s body. It must be known that no two exacerbations are alike and can change slightly.
The reason an exacerbation occurs is due to the immune system attack on the myelin sheath, which then causes slow or interrupted neuronal signals in the brain and spinal cord. An exacerbation can consist of balance problems, coordination, eyesight, bladder function, memory or concentration problems, mobility, fatigue, weakness, numbness or needle-link sensation.
Mild symptoms such as fatigue, numbness, and needle-link sensation could potentially improve on their own and not require treatment. More intense issues could be considered a severe exacerbation which could include vision loss, extreme weakness, and poor balance. During a severe exacerbation, a person’s daily activities could be affected and a short course of high-dose corticosteroids may be recommended by the specialist.
The high-dose of steroids helps reduce the severity and duration of the exacerbation. Even though steroids work well with the exacerbation, they can also have some rather unpleasant side effects including increased appetite, weight gain, fluid retention, high blood pressure, irritability, confusion or delirium, increased risk for infection, and easy bruising.
Symptoms for each person with Multiple Sclerosis are different. Being aware of common triggers for an exacerbation is vital for each person to know and even though symptoms can occur without any notice it is important to try avoiding certain things the best one possibly can.
4 Common Triggers for an Exacerbation:
Stress- Part of living with an illness like MS is emotional stress which can lead to other common MS symptoms such as depression. Stress does have the potential to lead to additional MS symptoms such as fatigue and confusion. It is a crucial part of MS treatment to have a good and solid support network of people that can help out both physically and emotionally.
Fatigue- Sleep is essential for those with Multiple Sclerosis. Small issues like lack of sleep can trigger MS symptoms. It is very important to have good healthy eating habits, sleep well, and getting exercise daily which will help combat MS fatigue.
Infection- Infections cause about one-third of all exacerbation. Urinary tract infections are very common because some people with MS have reduced bladder function. Any infection can weaken the immune system; even the simple ones like a cold or the flu and cause an exacerbation. It is extremely important to avoid being around sick people, but when it is unavoidable be sure to wash hands frequently.
Heat- Infections leading to fever can be something to worry about considering increased body temperature is a very common trigger. MS symptoms, especially tingling gets worse in the summer because of the heat. It is predominant to get into the air conditioning or take a cool shower to reduce heat symptoms from occurring.
Thank y’all for visiting my site and reading about what an exacerbation is. Speaking from personal experience an exacerbation can be awful and also frustrating. Even though I do know that steroids help the episode duration be shorter, they cause my mood to change so much that I have a hard time with them. They cause my temper to come out much faster than it normally would and also cause me to feel edgy and unable to sleep.
For any of you that have experienced an exacerbation and were put on steroids, how did the steroids make you feel and did they help the episode not last too long? Also, if you have anything you would like to add to this, please let me know. I always want to spread the awareness as much as I can because I think it is important. Even in 2020 I do still think there are a lot of misconceptions about MS and people are very quick to judge, which can cause feelings to be hurt. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love , comfort, and many positive vibes!
As temperatures are on a steady rise throughout the southern states, it seems as though Mother Nature is trying to either tell us something or she is playing an incredible ugly joke on us. Over Memorial Day weekend temperatures in the south are going to remain in the HIGH 90’s and possible even reach 100.
Sadly, it isn’t even officially summer and yet the temperatures are already extreme, so what does this mean for summer in the south? This will mean that many people will be at much higher risks for additional medical issues and possibly even worse than that. I do want to make y’all aware of those who could be at these higher risks:
People over the age of 65 years old.
Those who have medical conditions such as, diabetes, kidney disease or mental illness.
Individuals that take medication that could affect how their body reacts to the heat, like allergy, blood pressure, seizure, antidepressants or anti-psychotic medication or water pills.
Problematic alcohol and drug usage.
A person with a disability.
People that have issues moving around, such as those who are wheelchair bound.
Pregnancy women and those who are breast feeding.
Babies and young children.
Those that are over-weight or obese.
People who exercise or work outdoors.
People who just recently arrived from cooler temperatures.
Even though there are going to be many people at risk during these hot months, there are things we can all do to possibly combat these insanely high temperatures. I am going to share a list of IMPORTANT things for us to remember:
Even when not thirsty, drink plenty of fluids anyway.
Keep cool by utilizing cool towels, put your feet in cold water or take cool, NOT a cold showers.
Spend as much time as possible in the air conditioning.
Block the sun with blinds, shades or curtains.
Stay out of the sun during the hottest parts of the day. The heat starts to build after 12pm, noon and tends to be the hottest around 3pm.
Wear light colors and loose clothing.
Eat smaller more frequent meals throughout the day. We should try eating cold meals, like salads, instead of hot meals.
Avoid heavy activities as much as possible!
Pay very close attention to information provided by the news or weather channels regarding extreme heat warnings.
The heat tends to bother me in some awful ways, but high humidity causes even more issues for me. I know something I have found is, after my car has literally been baking in the sun for hours it feels way more like a mobile sauna than my car. I guess that was something pretty darn simple to realize! Now, considering my car is SO HOT, I cannot drive for a few minutes for obvious safety reasons and logic. I always do my best to wait with the windows down and the air conditioning starting to cool before starting the journey to wherever I am going. I do not start moving until the car is blowing cold air! I have found this to be very helpful and it does work, or at least it does for me!
If I need to leave my house for any reason at all, such as grocery shopping, I either wait until after the sun goes down or first thing in the morning. Planning tasks according to what can be completed at home and what can only be done by leaving the house is crucial. Of course I have always been an insane planner, so this is easy for me! It is not always easy though to plan shopping or other activities because plans may change due to unforeseen obstacles, but that is when you just find alternative ways to accomplish your tasks to be taken care of.
I would like to answer y’all a few questions because of how amazing I find you! I will not put any extra stress on you, but at the same time I am strongly encouraging you to try answering at least one of my questions. Does the heat affect you at all? If the heat does bothering you, what does it cause for you? How do you handle the heat, like what steps do you take to combat the heat difficulties? What bothers you more, heat or humidity or is it just a horrible combination?
Thank you for visiting my site today. I do always appreciate your great thoughts and constant support. I hope you are enjoying the long weekend and you are feeling the best you possibly can! Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love , comfort, and many positive vibes!