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ALL ABOUT MS The role of the family (Part 17)

ALL ABOUT MS The role of the family (Part 17)

Need help: from whom to ask for?
Contact with a neurologist is necessary from the diagnosis of MS. In addition, it is necessary to cooperate with other professionals who are involved in the treatment of MS patients, such as physiatrists, psychologists, social workers, physiotherapists, nurses. Associations with MS can provide useful information and support. There is a wide array of different types of societies and associations that are not directly targeted at MS, but they can be a refuge and a source of energy necessary for further life. Support groups for families with MS suffer a great deal of help. Talking with others who have a sick member helps in several ways. It is possible to share with them the current problems and to hear how they have managed in similar situations. Often, it only helps to know that there are others with similar problems, which reduces the sense of isolation. Help and support from friends is always welcome. Help should be sought openly and directly.

Emotional reactions in patients with MS

In addition to the physical symptoms associated with MS, the patient also has a number of changes in feelings, behavior and response. These are changes in emotional life. They can occur as a result of the demyelinating process itself, may be reactions to the announced diagnosis, but also the consequence of the use of some drugs such as, for example, steroids. Most commonly these effects overlap, so each division of emotional reactions to the groups would be incorrect and incomplete. As MS is a disease with very diverse symptoms, so emotional reactions differ by species, duration and severity from the patient to the diseased. Sometimes they occur individually, sometimes at the same time, and in some cases they originate from one another.

Some of the emotional changes observed in patients with MS are depressive reactions, suffering from loss of abilities caused by disease, negation of the disease, stress and reaction to a stressful situation, feelings of guilt, anxiety and anxiety, emotional lability and a changeable mood, inability to control emotional reaction, behavioral disorders and inappropriate behavior. The above-mentioned review of emotional reactions in MS is only an attempt to enumerate them, which does not mean that they have to appear in this order or that they have to respond to the life of each person at all.

The depressive reaction is a very common and even common response to the diagnosis. It follows the feeling of sadness, squandering, hopelessness, loss of life energy. Such a mood may last from several hours to several days, even up to several months, when a picture of clinical depression is already taking place. People with MS, as well as their loved ones, should know that depression, in its various forms, is one of the common followers of this disease. Research suggests that depression is more common in obese than MS, not only in relation to the general population, but also in patients with other chronic illnesses. It is not followed only by a person with a weak character, nor is it something embarrassing, which should be covered. One of the mistakes is that it is a state that can be controlled by the power of will or decision. Depression often represents a disturbed chemical balance in the brain and can occur at any time, even when everything is going to die in life. The most effective treatment is a combination of psychotherapy and regular prescribed medication against depression. The importance of talking and supporting other people with similar experiences is not negligible, but in depressive reactions it is only a supplement to clinical treatment.

Suffering for the loss of previous abilities occurs occasionally in people with MS due to the disability to continue working and living in a way that has so far appeared. At some point, after an aggravation and a new attack of the disease, there may be a problem with walking, vision, and the like, which affects working ability as well as dealing with different activities. The experience of loss results in a strong sense of sadness, pain and suffering associated with a major change in the image of oneself. The person does not see himself or can think of himself in the way in the past. She suffers, pity for herself, mourns for lost activities, which may resemble depression. However, the difference between these reactions exists, because suffering is a time-limited emotional reaction, which means it has its beginning and an even more important end. A person who has experienced suffering can enjoy life again and in life's activities in which her satisfaction was so far as far as she permits, in contrast to the depression which prevents her from doing so, since she is more persistent, more difficult to return and significantly draws energy. No matter how pain and suffering are difficult, at the moment they survive, they make the person even more powerful, because they represent a crisis and only a transient phase from which comes out with a more realistic picture of oneself, which enables the newly confronted with reality, whatever it was. Suffering for the loss of previous abilities is one of the rare conditions that is treated in time without treatment even though in the process of this process, conversation with other people with a full understanding of the environment has an extraordinary role.

Neglecting the disease occurs in a number of patients, not particularly large, especially in the initial stages, more often in men than in women. A person refuses to admit, above all to himself, and then to others that he is ill. Depression is missing. This reaction occurs more often in those who, even before the illness, tend to react to unpleasant psychological conditions by neglecting them. This does not mean that denial is reported to people who are superficial. On the contrary, it should be borne in mind that these people's illness leads to a state in which the reality is unbearable, so the person is struggling by using all his strengths, keeping the earlier image of himself, fearing even the image of himself so that it becomes even more powerful and far from reality. In this way, reality is virtually denied. The escape from reality is the defense of the most pressing and dangerous. It is happening to those who pretend to be cured. Without losing hope, a sincere and open conversation with a neurologist and counselor is advised, with close people. Denial and non-acceptance of illness and treatment may result in a worsening of the disease.

Feeling of guilt often occurs in a patient with MS. It is the emotional reaction of a person who has a vague but powerful feeling of guilty. The guilty is in relation to itself, but also in relation to its neighbors, because it is in its opinion worthless, useless and burdensome to the family that has to take over its previous obligations. Undetermined, this is followed by contemplation of illness as punishment for some alleged "sin" for which it is now being blamed. It is important that family members do not ignore such statements, but rather understand them as a call for a person to talk and help in the face of, above all, emotional support. These kinds of thoughts and feelings should be discussed with professionals, but also with other illnesses to share similar experiences.


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