Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease that affects many Canadians. Physical Therapy is beneficial in reducing some symptoms and improving activities of daily living. Find out how!

2 minute read

Multiple Sclerosis is an autoimmune disease that affects the central nervous system which includes your brain and spinal cord. The disease attacks the protective covering of your nerves which can cause inflammation and scar tissue disrupting the nerve impulses or damaging the nerve fibres.

According to the Multiple Sclerosis Society,

“Canada has the highest rate of MS in the world, with an estimated 1 in 340 Canadians living with the disease [and] is most often diagnosed in young adults between 15-40 years.”

Multiple Sclerosis Facts

  • MS is an autoimmune disease that attacks myelin (the protective covering of your nerves) which disrupts nerve impulses
  • MS is usually diagnosed between ages 15-40
  • Women are more at risk of developing MS than men
  • The disease is erratic and can cause a variety of symptoms
  • The effects of the disease can be physical or emotional
  • There is no cure for MS

The MS Society defines the basic categories as follows:

Relapsing Remitting MS (RRMS)

RRMS includes periods where symptoms are apparent to periods of recovery or remission where function returns. This type accounts for about 85% of people with MS.

Progressive MS (PMS)

PMS relapses and remissions no longer occur, symptoms persist, disability increases.

Progressive Relapsing MS

Progressive Relapsing MS; wherein the individual has relapses with or without recovery.

Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms

Some people can be virtually symptom-free while others have severe or chronic symptoms. These symptoms may include:

  • Extreme Fatigue
  • Mood swings (depression & anxiety)
  • Pain
  • Loss of Coordination (spasticity, spasms, ataxia, impaired balance)
  • Tingling
  • Weakness
  • Vision problems (and in some cases vision loss)
  • Bladder & bowel problems
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Headaches

Causes & Managing Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms

There is currently no cure for MS and every person is likely to experience the disease differently.

According to the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada,

“Current evidence suggests that lifestyle, environment, genetic and biological factors all contribute to MS.”

Some coinciding factors that are seen with multiple sclerosis are thyroid disease, arthritis, hypertension, high cholesterol, osteoporosis, and obesity. After being assessed and diagnosed by a neurologist it is important to seek physical therapy to help reduce the symptoms of MS and improve daily function and independence. At Bourassa & Associates, our university trained physical therapists have the knowledge and experience in working with MS. We will design an individualized program that targets your specific symptoms and concerns, which can include but is not limited to:

  • Improvement on posture and balance
  • Maintaining and improving movement and motor-function
  • Exercises to reduce fatigue and pain
  • Strength, endurance and flexibility programs
  • Education for the patient and for the family
  • Mobility aids where required

Book Your Appointment & Start TODAY!

Diagnosis of multiple sclerosis and treatment of symptoms associated with the disease is important to maintain functional daily activities. At Bourassa & Associates, you can get started right away, no doctor’s referral needed. Book an assessment online or contact our location nearest you to book your appointment via telephone.

Let us use our 30 years of experience to help you with your multiple sclerosis symptoms. We want to help you live your best life!

Get Started