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Tips for living better MS living


                                Sounds like a good exercise plan to me!

If you don't like that plan, there is a new dare circulating on Planet MA. A daily exercise is sent your way via the following link.  These exercises, designed specifically for us Warriors,  are anything but watered down. C'mon, folks, it's nearing bikini season. Let's get our bods in shape.

I double dog dare you.

And since we are working on our improving our health this season, I thought you might be interested in the followin article. I ashamedly admit that I do not have a source for the article and am therefore committing a serious plagiarism rule. My apologies to the author/source. Due to the nature of this blog, I hope forgiveness can and will be granted. I am in no way attempting to talk credit for this valuable information.

5 Tips for Living Better with MS: Patients and Caregivers

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Here are some tips that can make it easier for patients and caregivers alike to deal with MS.

5 Tips for Living Better with MS: Patients and Caregivers
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is believed to be caused by the immune system wrongfully attacking a person’s own myelin, the fatty substance that insulates nerves and helps them send electrical signals to control movement, speech and other functions.
If you have MS or care about someone who does, you know that it can be a frustrating, unpredictable condition. It’s hard to tell when symptoms such as numbness, weakness, loss of balance and cognitive difficulties will complicate your life.
Here are some tips that can make it easier for patients and caregivers alike to deal with MS.

1. Eat for optimal health.

Everyone can benefit from a good diet, but especially people with chronic diseases such as MS.
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society notes that there’s no special diet for MS, but that eating a diet low in fat and high in vitamins and fiber can help you feel better, while maximizing your energy and supporting healthy bladder and bowel function.
A good diet supports caregivers too, with more energy, optimism and general health.
A better diet may actually be therapeutic for MS patients, since it can help them avoid metabolic syndrome, the all-too-common constellation of high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high cholesterol, abdominal obesity and insulin resistance that puts patients at risk for developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease and other chronic conditions.
Peter Calabresi, M.D., an expert in MS at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, says, “Data around this point are hard to quantify, but our team is very interested in lifestyle modifications in patients with MS.
"There is mounting evidence that metabolic syndrome compounding MS is particularly lethal. We’re seeing that the so-called Western industrial lifestyle breeds autoimmune diseases like MS. It’s hard to get biomarkers, but we’re looking closely at the role of excessive sugar, animal fats and too much salt.”

2. Commit to regular exercise.

Research shows that people with MS who participate in an aerobic exercise program benefit from improved cardiovascular fitness, increased strength, better bladder and bowel function, and a more upbeat attitude.
Yoga, adaptive tai chi and water exercise are also excellent workouts for people with MS and anyone else, including busy caregivers who can benefit from stress management.

3. Address sleep issues.

MS can cause sleep problems, including insomnia, frequent nighttime urination, narcolepsy and leg spasms — over half of MS patients suffer with restless legs syndrome.
Dr. Calabresi says, “Sleep is very much underestimated in brain function. We know there’s a correlation between poor sleep and both Alzheimer’s and MS.
“It’s hard to tell which comes first, since people with MS have disrupted sleep patterns. There can be early morning awakening caused by depression and nighttime awakenings due to overactive bladder. But we do know that poor sleep correlates with poor daytime cognitive ability, which can affect patients’ ability to cope.”
Be proactive and ask your doctor for help, whether you’re suffering with MS or caring for someone who has it. Chronic illness can be exhausting, and MS patients and their caregivers both need as much quality sleep as they can get.

4. Customize your environment.

MS symptoms can strike suddenly and make it hard for patients to physically navigate their environment.
Life is easier for people with MS when their homes and offices are arranged for maximum efficiency and minimum risk. Keep essentials within easy reach, install safety features in the bath and shower and cut down on clutter to reduce the risk of falls.

5. Reach out and get involved.

Self-help and MS support groups can help you connect with other patients and caregivers and establish a valuable network for exchanging ideas, new research news and encouragement. Check your local hospitals or care centers, as well as MS organizations.

If you participated in one of the many MS Walks this beautiful weekend, I would love to live vicariously through you, so please take a moment to share!

All exercise suggestions are welcome here. I believe that we learn more about our disease from others living the same nightmare. the more we share, the more we learn.

My husband's big gripe (one of them) is the lack of common sense education we off our children concerning every day things. He has a particular pet-peeve about litter. He blames a large portion of society's disregard for abusing our countryside with senseless of litter on a lack of education/concern on the matter. He has actually stopped his vehicle to reprimand a passenger for tossing something (a cigarette, maybe) out the car window. Not only does he stop driving, but he ha been known to drive back to the scene of the crime for said passenger to retrieve the offensive item.

Moral of the story? Education is important.
It is essential that we learn more about MS to better care for ourselves.

This afternoon I am visiting a local elementary school to participate in a unique learning experience. In order to teach a group of second graders more about tolerance and understanding of individuals living with handicaps, The unique part of this program is that several identified handicaps will be represented. 

These students spend the day with a classmate confined to a wheelchair. I do not know the reason, but am anxious to discover that today. This student's mother will begin a discussion about her daughter's limitations and public reactions to the obvious stigma that accompanies her daughter daily. 

Second to the stage will be a representative from MDA (muscular dystrophy association) to discuss what Jerry's Kids is all about. 

Last on the agenda will be me and my limited knowledge of MS. Because MS is not always visible, I have the opportunity to present a different perspective on physical handicaps.

I look forward to possibly educating these children on a not-so-normal lifestyle. My goal is not to incite sympathy, but to show how determination can prevail when faced with a chronic health situation. 

I hope I am successful in making a positive impression.

We are all Super Heroes and children need to know the harsh truth of our struggle by also knowing that they, too,  should never give up. Life is a struggle. Pick your battles and know your priorities; but set your sights on success.

So, I need to dust off my cape and get ready for the day.

Is this sunshine awesome or what?!


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