This March: Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month
Each month of the year, there are multiple health conditions that are brought to attention and dedicated to every month. For example, January is cervical cancer awareness month and in August there is Spinal Muscular Atrophy Awareness month. For the month of March, attention is brought to Multiple Sclerosis awareness. In the United States, between 250,000- 350,000 people are diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, or MS, with about 200 new cases every year.
MS is a lifelong chronic disease that attacks a person’s central nervous system, which is controlled by the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. Each case of MS is different depending on the person and can vary from mild, which include numbness in limbs, to severe, which can include loss of vision or paralysis. MS is an autoimmune disease that uses the body’s immune system to attack the central nervous system and can be triggered by either a person’s genetics or by certain environmental factors. In attacking the central nervous system, myelin, which protects nerve fibers in the body, goes under spasm and damaged. The nerve fibers also become damaged and the connection from the nerves to the brain and spinal cord become severed and scar tissue begins to form, hence the diseases name.
There is no cure for MS, but there are various treatments for the disease that help modify it, treat the flare-ups, and manage symptoms. There are also ways to promote function to limbs by means of rehabilitation and therapy. Because MS affects so many people each year, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society has created fundraising events to not only raise awareness but to raise money for further research to find a cure. People can participate in various walks and bike races and they can also volunteer with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and their efforts. If you are interested in their efforts, visit their website http://www.nationalmssociety.org/get-involved/index.aspx and find out more!!!
All information came from http://multiple-sclerosis.emedtv.com/multiple-sclerosis/multiple-sclerosis-statistics.html and also http://www.nationalmssociety.org/about-multiple-sclerosis/what-we-know-about-ms/what-is-ms/index.aspx