There’s a common misconception that Mental Health effects just the brain, not other parts of the body. Did you know that Multiple Sclerosis can be aggravated by mental health issues?
How does this happen? Stress.
Stress causes an inflammatory response in MS patients and should always be taken seriously. When someone is having a mental health episode their body immediately is heightened with stress whether they have anxiety, depression, PTSD, or any other diagnosis. This can cause flare-ups and even possibly an MS relapse.
What can we do to help ourselves stay on track? When someone with MS is being treated with medication for a mental health diagnosis it’s important to have open communication between their psychiatrist and neurologist. Steroids and MS meds can throw off someone’s emotional state of mind so it’s good to be monitored by both healthcare providers especially if they are on a new MS medication. This will reassure the patient that their body and their mind are both being taken care of properly.
A lot of healthcare providers are simply unaware that this is such a struggle for many of us. The way I’ve worded it to my psychiatrist is that when my body is in distress it stresses out my mind, and when my mind is in distress it stresses out my body. It’s an endless cycle that can be definitely frustrating. It makes our bodies ache, and can make it difficult for us to go through our day to day routines.
The battle between the body and the mind is a long and tough battle but knowing what to be aware of is always a way to keep yourself safe. Please be sure to reach out to someone if you are ever struggling.
-Becca Elizabeth (A Punk With MS)