Multiple sclerosis is a disease in which the immune system attacks the nerve cells, leading to poor communication between the brain and organs. This can cause severe and even permanent negative changes in the body. There is no cure for this condition, but treatment can help ease the symptoms. Like most autoimmune diseases, the causes of this disease are unknown, but a combination of environmental and genetic factors are believed to contribute to its development.
Lifestyle changes for multiple sclerosis
Smoking is never good for health. Particularly for multiple sclerosis patients, smoking worsens the condition and aids the progress of the disease. If one smokes a lot, they should consult a doctor for advice to get into programs that can help them quit.
Avoid too much heat
Too much heat, within and outside the body, can be harmful to a patient of multiple sclerosis. Here are some lifestyle changes for multiple sclerosis one can follow to reduce the effects of heat on their body:
- Try to stay in the shade in hot weather.
- Use the air conditioner regularly if living in a place where it’s constantly hot.
- Avoid hot baths and showers.
- Immediate care and the necessary steps to remedy a fever.
- Avoid overexerting the body in such a way that it increases body temperature.
- Drink plenty of water and fresh juices.
- Avoid caffeinated drinks and sodas.
- Consume more fruits, vegetables, and yogurt.
- Wear lightweight and loose clothing.
- Drink cold fluids and have ice-cream.
- Use products like neck wraps and bandana outdoors to cool down the body.
- Water exercises should be done in a pool where the temperature does not exceed 84 degrees Fahrenheit. Prioritize early morning and late evening workouts in the pool.
Sometimes, too much cold can also be a problem, and symptoms like spasticity show up and also worsen in cold weather. So, it is recommended to not move to the extremes of hot and cold.
Reduce the consumption of alcohol
One of the most effective lifestyle changes for multiple sclerosis is to avoid alcohol. Although there is no direct link between the consumption of alcohol and the actual progression of the disease, alcohol can worsen the symptoms. Imbalance and lack of coordination can worsen after just one drink. Alcohol can also increase the urgency to urinate and the frequency at which it occurs. Additionally, it depresses the nervous system and can interfere with some of the medications being administered to treat the symptoms of multiple sclerosis. Alcohol is also harmful to patients with other health issues and can cause other diseases that can increase the severity of multiple sclerosis.
Several multiple sclerosis patients are concerned with the safety of vaccines. It is recommended for them to take regular vaccinations according to schedule as preventing infections is key in the medical care for the condition. Before receiving a vaccine, one should talk to their health care provider to see whether any of their medications might clash with the vaccines.