Early signs of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) can be present in people as young as 20-years-of age. The disease, which affects the immune system and has a direct impact on the central nervous system, can be controlled through treatment and the sooner it is diagnosed, the better chances for a normal life patients get.
Here is what you should pay attention to, in looking for early signs of multiple sclerosis:
Vision – MS affects the vision quality, turning it blurry; you might also experience double vision
Logic – thinking, focusing, connection dots mentally – all these brain operations might get harder to accomplish
Coordination – MS symptoms may include a change in the way you move. You may notice you are losing coordination, or you become clumsy(-ier); you may also experience loss of balance, which leads to difficulty in walking
Unusual sensations – you start noticing your arms or legs become weaker; other sensations include tingling, numbness, itching, burning or stabbing.
Bowel and urinary tract – people with MS may need to use the bathroom more often, even during the night; or they may suffer from constipation.
How MS works
The nerves in the brain and down the spinal cord are protected by a layer of myelin, which ensures the smooth travel of information from the body’s receptors to the brain and vice versa. In MS, this layer is getting scarred, thus lowering the protection level it offers and causing interrupted signals between the brain and the body.
This translates in the brain not telling the body to do the simple chores completely, or correctly. For example, it may lose the ability to tell the body to empty the bladder properly, which can cause a bladder infection.
Reaching a state where basic functions of the body are damaged makes it hard or impossible for the patient to participate in social life or even to do the simple every day chores.
Needless to say, preventing these complications is crucial in the quality of life of the person with MS. Early diagnosis raises the chances of getting treatment just for the neurological damage, thus preventing the development of secondary problems.
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