What is Multiple Sclerosis: Causes and Symptoms

 

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an illness that affects the white matter, or myelin, in the brain, which alters how the nerve fibers work. One of the functions of myelin is to make the nerves transmit impulses quickly. If it doesn’t work, the brain cannot properly transmit these impulses, which causes coordination and balance problems. It also makes it difficult to think and remember things and causes vision problems.

multiple sclerosis

Dominik Golenia

Multiple Sclerosis: Causes

We still don’t know exactly why we get MS, but scientists speculate that it may be due to an unknown virus that causes changes in the immune system, which causes antibodies to attack the myelin in the brain. This process may affect many areas of the nervous system, causing all kinds of symptoms: problems with language, balance, vision…

Aside from this assumption, there are also tests that show that multiple sclerosis is more likely to appear in people with a genetic susceptibility, meaning they have some type of genetic defect that causes them to have a higher chance of having a specific illness.

Multiple Sclerosis: Symptoms

Multiple sclerosis is most frequent in people between 29 and 33 years old, but it can affect a wide age range, from 10 to 59 years old, and it is more common in women than men. These are some of the most common symptoms of MS.

Vision problems: Blurry vision, double vision, involuntary rapid eye movement, and blindness in some cases.

Balance and coordination problems: Dizziness and vertigo, coordination problems, unstable walking, difficulty with fine-motor skills.

Muscular problems: Pain and muscular spasms, and muscular stiffness.

Altered sensations: Burning and tingling.

Problems speaking: Slow pronunciation and changes in rhythm while speaking.

Fatigue: Unexpectedly or exaggerated fatigue while doing everyday tasks.

Bladder and intentional complications: Needing to go to the bathroom more often, and less commonly, incontinence.

Sexual problems: Decreased sex drive and loss of sense of pleasure.

Emotional and cognitive problems: Difficulty thinking and memorizing information, and problems concentrating and paying attention.

For more information about MS, check out this article.

Molly is a writer specialized in health and psychology. She is passionate about neuroscience and how the brain works, and is constantly looking for new content from interesting sources. Molly is happy to give or take advice, and is always working to educate and inspire.

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