How we feel about ourselves and the environment around us affects our mental wellbeing. Our physical well-being and how we take care of ourselves may also be influenced. Emotional changes in multiple sclerosis are usual (MS). It is essential to be mindful of how MS can impact emotional well-being as well as methods to identify and resolve these mood shifts.
In the general population, there are high chances of depression among MS patients, and at some stage of life, caregivers and spouses may also experience depression. Changes in the role of households and economic problems, as well as depression and psychiatric conditions in the person with MS, are all factors leading to caregiver distress. Depression can escalate thoughts of suicide, along with anxiety, and should not be left untreated. It can be treated successfully with a combination of medications and cognitive behavioral therapy in most cases. This form of treatment relies on recognizing and changing feelings, values, and behaviors that may lead to emotional discomfort.
Around half of people who have MS and depression feel anxiety as well. But without depression, anxiety may occur independently as well. Anxiety has been associated with reduced social contact, increased risk of heavy alcohol usage, increased pain levels, and can also have an effect on cognitive ability, such as how easily information is processed by the brain.
You know that if you have ever experienced anxiety, it can make everyday life challenging. One way certain individuals cope with anxiety is by ignoring the root of it. Your inclination may be to stop getting in the car when you get nervous about getting dizzy while driving. Or if you are afraid in public of getting a bowel accident, it might seem like a safe solution not to leave the building. These habits of avoidance can cause you to miss the appointment of a doctor, restrict your time with friends, or discourage you from doing something you enjoy. To help develop confidence and endurance, the treatment for anxiety involves behavioral therapy and exposure exercises.
It is crucial to consider these emotions as part of MS, as they can affect your life, and can become a cause of emotional stress. You will better cope with these effects by consulting with your doctor and getting advice from a mental health professional. You should also search for support groups for MS, including social groups online, engagement with social media, and support networks. The feeling of being lonely can be alleviated by interacting with those who have MS. If so inclined, an emotional boost can also be given by taking the opportunity to connect and support others with MS.