Each year, the beginning of March is the start of National MS Education and Awareness Month. At 180 Medical, we like to make sure to do what we can to raise awareness about this condition and support the millions who are affected by MS all across the world, including many of our customers, who depend on us for their catheter supplies.
Take some time to learn a little bit more about MS and find out what you can do to help raise awareness this month.
What is MS & Who is Affected?
MS (Multiple Sclerosis) is an “unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body.” (Source: National MS Society)
This can affect one’s optic nerves, spinal cord, brain, and nerves of the body in general, and the condition seems to attack the myelin sheath, the fatty protective material surrounding nerve axons that transmits impulses through the body).
Since over 2,500,000 people around the world live with MS, there’s a chance that someone you personally know is currently living with MS.
What are the symptoms of MS?
MS can present itself in a multitude of different ways in the body, so the symptoms are not the same for every single person living with this condition.
Early warning signs of MS may include:
- Vision changes
- Cognitive issues
- Sudden lack of coordination or difficulty walking
- Loss of balance
- Numbness or tingling
- Sudden or gradual weakness in your limbs
If you suspect you may have Multiple Sclerosis, see your doctor as soon as possible to begin the process of diagnosis, as some of these symptoms are attributable to other conditions. The first diagnosis usually occurs when one is between twenty to forty years old, but symptoms can appear earlier or later in life.
Other MS symptoms one may experience include:
- Coordination and balance issues
- Bladder dysfunction
- Mental fogginess
- For a more comprehensive list, visit the National MS Society’s MS symptoms page.
Raising Awareness About MS
First, if you have social media, consider sharing information about MS awareness.
Also, we encourage you to join a National MS Society Walk MS event near you! At 180 Medical, this is one of our favorite annual events to attend and support in Central Oklahoma. You can go to the National MS Society’s website to find a walk near you. Get your friends and family to join you so you can have a great time while taking steps to find a cure.
You might also have a day during March to join with fellow students, family, or coworkers to wear orange, which is the official color for MS Awareness. You could even hold a fundraiser like a bake sale or car wash to help someone you know with Multiple Sclerosis pay their medical bills or support a non-profit organization that helps people living with MS.
Life After an MS Diagnosis
Today, many ways to manage symptoms exist, such as medications, lifestyle changes, and more.
Also, joining a support group to connect with others living with MS can be a big help. Sometimes just knowing someone else understands what you’re going through can be encouraging.
At 180 Medical, we understand that there are some symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis that can feel embarrassing to discuss, such as urinary incontinence. We encourage you to talk to your doctor to find the right solution for your needs.
If you need intermittent catheters or incontinence supplies after your MS diagnosis, contact 180 Medical. Our specialists will treat your needs with respect and kindness.