MS often strikes people in their peak career and family-building years. How can you live to the best of your ability with MS? Here are a few tips on managing MS treatment as part of a busy life:
Treat your MS early. Researchers have found that there may be a "window of opportunity" early in the disease where treatment has the maximum impact on slowing down the progression of MS so you can continue to live to the best of your ability for longer.
- Discuss optimal treatment with your neurologist early in your disease. While you are on treatment, it's important to have regular discussions with your neurologist about optimal treatment. Use the MS Treatment Check-up Guide to prepare for your appointment.
Let your neurologist know if you are having trouble with your treatment, are experiencing bothersome side effects, or have stopped taking treatment. MS medications can help preserve your abilities, so it is very important to take them regularly and stick to your treatment plan to get the full benefit.
- Use the MS Treatment Check-up Guide to check for issues that could be getting in the way of your treatment.
- If you are forgetting to take your medication, getting tired of injections (also called "injection fatigue"), having trouble giving yourself the injection, or having side effects from your medication, ask your neurologist for help before these issues get in the way of your treatment.
- If you have stopped your treatment because of issues like this, talk to your neurologist.
- There are other disease-modifying medications available for MS, so you have options.
Use the Symptom Log to keep track of your symptoms over time, and inform your neurologist of any changes.
Keep an active role in your treatment even when you're not having relapses. Your MS may still be causing damage even between relapses. Your neurologist can use tests such as MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) to measure markers or MS damage such as brain lesions. To learn more about MS markers, see MS treatment expectations.