Given the lack of information surrounding multiple sclerosis (MS), it’s easy for misconceptions to linger long after they’ve been dismissed. Our understanding of MS is constantly improving, so it’s important to stay updated even after you’ve been diagnosed. With the help of a specialist, you can stay on top of your condition and learn how to manage it better.
At Indus Healthcare in Pomona, West Covina, and Montclair, California, Dr. Amit Reenu Paliwal provides a full range of chronic care management for patients with conditions like multiple sclerosis.
An overview of multiple sclerosis
Multiple sclerosis is a chronic condition that occurs when the immune system mistakenly attacks the myelin in your body. Myelin is the substance that makes up the sheaths protecting nerve fibers.
Known as white matter, this shielding is vital to the health of your nerves. Multiple sclerosis gets its name from the formation of scar tissue (sclerosis) that forms after attacks. Depending on what form of MS you have, you might experience attacks on a cyclical basis or all the time.
Most people are first diagnosed with relapsing-remitting MS, which causes periods of inactivity followed by exacerbated symptoms. Without proper treatment, this can evolve into secondary-progressive MS, where the symptoms gradually worsen over time.
What most don’t know
There’s plenty we’re in the dark about regarding multiple sclerosis, but there’s also much we’ve come to understand. Here’s some things you might not know.
Multiple sclerosis is up to four times more common in women
Plenty of people know that women are more likely to develop MS than men, but they don’t know to what degree. Like many autoimmune conditions, multiple sclerosis primarily affects women, with recent numbers implying they’re four times more likely than men to develop it. It’s not entirely understood why this is the case, though some research indicates it might be hormonal.
It’s been linked to vitamin D deficiency
Data suggest that chronically low levels of vitamin D can increase your risk of developing MS, with people in colder climates (who receive less sunlight) having higher rates of the condition. While getting some sun is good for you, taking supplements is safer and more effective than prolonged exposure.
Early treatment can help slow progression
Many people are under the impression that since there’s no cure for multiple sclerosis, there are no treatment options either. This is not true, and waiting for your symptoms to worsen before seeking help only complicates your diagnosis. MS is typically determined through the process of elimination, so it’s important that you address symptoms as soon as possible.
With the help of a specialist, you can quickly rule out other possibilities and begin discussing ways to alleviate symptoms and lower relapse rate. In some cases, proper treatment can even slow progression of your MS, improving your health in the long run.
At Indus Healthcare, we provide chronic care management for a number of illnesses, including autoimmune conditions like MS and lupus. To learn more, schedule an appointment by calling the location closest to you, or visit the contact page for more options.