Multiple sclerosis is a chronic disease that is immune-mediated and progressive. It leads to the body’s immune system responding abnormally, thereby damaging the central nervous system. The condition causes the demyelination of the brain and the nerve cells of the spinal cord. Due to this process, there is a malfunction of the axons—the parts of the nerve cells that are responsible for conducting impulses to other cells. As the nerves continue to be affected by the loss of myelin, a patient begins to develop multiple sclerosis symptoms. The progression of the disease leads to inflammation and injury that is typically identified through an MRI scan and study.
There is no study that has been able to prove the exact cause of multiple sclerosis. While there are prevalent theories which range from deficiencies to infections, they may be only seen as possible factors. The disease is not contagious and does not spread from one affected individual to another.
What the varied types of multiple sclerosis?
There are four types of multiple sclerosis that an individual can develop. They include the following:
- Relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis: One of the most prevalent types of multiple sclerosis, relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis is a form that has associated symptoms which are likely to respond to the treatment. These symptoms then resolve, but there may be remission that can last for short to long periods.
- Secondary-progressive multiple sclerosis: Secondary-progressive multiple sclerosis is another type that is found among patients when the remission cannot be fully resolved. This is the typically the next stage after being diagnosed with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis.
- Primary-progressive multiple sclerosis: Under primary-progressive multiple sclerosis, the disease develops and continues to progress. Patients do not undergo a remission, nor is there any improvement of the symptoms.
- Progressive-relapsing multiple sclerosis: With this type of the disease, the patient suffers from an escalation of the symptoms. Also, there are episodes of remission that occur in intervals.
Which are the foods that can aid in decreasing the severity of the symptoms of multiple sclerosis?
Multiple sclerosis symptoms can be extremely discomforting and some food types that have proven to be beneficial include the following:
- Probiotics: Probiotics boost the growth of good bacteria in the gut. Thus, it effectively promotes the strengthening of the immune system. This bacteria can be obtained from yogurt, fermented tea, and through supplements.
- Fiber-rich foods: Multiple sclerosis symptoms can have a grave effect on the bowels. Consuming a diet that is rich in fiber foods promotes good gut health and aids in optimal health.
- Vitamin D: Vitamin D must be added to the diet in good proportion as it regulates the growth of new cells. Mushroom and shrimps are some of the sources of Vitamin D.
What are the treatment options used for patients with multiple sclerosis?
The treatment for multiple sclerosis is driven by a slew of factors. Typically, the treatment will focus on suppressing the response of the autoimmune system and the symptoms. There are some new treatments introduced for multiple sclerosis as well. Your doctor will advise you with a relevant treatment option depending on your condition.
- Medications: Depending on the severity of the condition, a single medicine or a combination of medications are used. Some of the popularly prescribed medications include corticosteroids, mitoxantrone, natalizumab, glatiramer acetate, and teriflunomide among several others.
- Rehabilitation: Multiple sclerosis affects one’s ability to perform daily activities and rehabilitation improves the same. Some of the programs that patients must undergo include occupational therapy, vocational therapy, physical therapy, and cognitive rehabilitation.
- Plasma exchange: This process involves the withdrawal of blood, followed by the removal of plasma and replacement of new plasma. The patient is then infused with the plasma exchange blood.
How can one effectively manage multiple sclerosis symptoms?
Managing multiple sclerosis symptoms well can ease the discomfort caused.
- One must get enough rest and attempt to undertake approved exercises.
- Energy drinks and other junk food must be completely avoided.
- A patient must limit the time spent on reading and using a computer as it can further strain their eyesight.
- Adaptive equipment, such as cranes and crutches, should be used to easily undertake activities.
Multiple sclerosis has no defined causes associated with it, and thus, there have been no ways that can aid in preventing the same. However, undertaking the practices of living a healthy life in the form of daily exercises, resting and sleeping well, and eating healthy foods will indubitably benefit in preventing the development of the multiple sclerosis.
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