Monday, January 26, 2009

MS Magnifies Stressful Situation

Dr. Swank used to explain to us that a MS patient feels things more strongly than the average person. He said there would be times that my wife would feel things 10X stronger than me. This included emotional and physical things. MS seems to have a way to heighten the senses and my wife is no exception. Her MS has caused her to have cramps, stiffness, physical pain, emotional pain, mood swings, and a range of other feelings. Yesterday was the perfect example of this.

Working on a campus with kids all day can be stressful. We take care of all of their needs 24/7 and then have to deal with their parents, other staff, school etc. on any given day. We also have regular staff meetings with other personnel that are also responsible for children on our campus. In our weekly meeting, one of the houseparents was very frustrated about some issues on campus and proceeded to vent her frustration to one of our bosses. During this venting, I could visibly see my wife tense up. Her hands started to tighten into fists and I could see the stress start to work its way through her body. She was not involved in the venting or the problem, but just by sitting in the same room she became physically involved in the encounter.

At one point in the conversation she felt compelled to defend another staff on our campus without becoming personally involved in the issue. She explained herself well, but her hands were visibly shaking and I could see the stress in her eyes and body. The tension from being in the same room during this venting exhausted my wife. She was flush and physically hot during this time, and remained that way for some time after the meeting. I know that she "feels" things more strongly than I do, and this meeting left her physically and emotionally spent even though she was not the one in the conversation.

MS and stress do not go well together, and we are reminded of this often. Our Chiropractor pointed out that one way he knows where our body is out of whack is by the physical indicators. He pointed out that our skin temperature, skin blemishes and other factors can easily tell him where the problems are occurring. He was able to show me on my wife's back where she was out of alignment and then show me the blemishes right at the problem area. It really was very fascinating. Stress manifests itself in so many strange ways and MS seems to magnify it. Just being in the room with a stressful situation can wear out my wife, and this particular event went on for maybe twenty minutes. We hope that the next staff meeting isn't quite so "exciting".

6 comments:

Hannah's Tears said...
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Amrita Alam Sandhy said...
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Christina said...

Cory,

I've been reading your posts for a while now. It is nice to know you're not alone.

It's funny how MS patients sometimes have these strong sensations. I have noticed this, too. So much easier to deal with when you know what is happening.

Keep up the great work!

dougdnh said...

Cory,
I came across your blog last night, and found it of great interest, since I am also the husband of a woman with ms. Her dx is a mild case of RRMS. She is currently on the MS Recovery Diet, and is about to start on LDN (low dose naltrexone). Has your wife ever tried LDN? It seems to be one of the best options currently available. I also found you experiences with chiropractic to be of some interest, especially since my wife's MRI uncovered some alignment problems in the cervical area.

Cory said...

Hey dougdnh, thanks so much for commenting. My wife's MS would also be classified as RRMS. Over the past 20 years my wife has been offered all sorts of MS drugs and she has chosen not to take any of them. Most of the MS patients that we know are taking some sort of medication, but we have made the choice to treat her MS with diet, rest and natural treatments. So far I can say that my wife has had a more normal life than any of the MS patients that we know that are taking prescription meds. Yes, chiropractic has been a huge help with her MS and I would recommend it to anyone. I would only recommend atlas orthogonal or adjustments using the Pro Adjuster. If you have any questions please let me know and thanks again for commenting.

Anonymous said...

Reading the comments posted by people with ms is a very reaffirming experience. I was diagnosed with ms over thirty years ago when not much was known about the disease,how to diagnose it or how to treat it. Looking backi i wonder if most of the problem I had physically were related to ms. It is often difficult to decide how to treat a problem. Do I go to a back doctor in case my leg problems are related to the sciatic? Do I call my endocrinologist for fear that my heavy legs are neuropathy related to diabetes? Or do I admit that I am under too much stress and the weather is too hot so my ms is asserting it's ownership of my body? I do know that finding pleasure in physical challenges I never dreamed I could do works wonders for my emotional well being. Thanks for providing a source of information That speaks to my existence.