This month for Institution for HOPE the Allen School of Health Sciences has been raising awareness for Multiple Sclerosis. Each month we focus on a different cause or awareness to get students and their families involved in giving back to the community and becoming more informed. Today, we want to share with you more about Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and how to get involved in your local area.
What is Multiple Sclerosis?
It is an unpredictable, chronic disease that causes the immune system to attack the healthy central nervous system (CNS). This includes the optic nerves, spinal cord and brain. According to www.nationalmssociety.org the symptoms include but not limited to the following: “blurred vision, loss of balance, poor coordination, slurred speech, tremors, numbness, extreme fatigue, problems with memory and concentration, paralysis, and blindness.” The ages of diagnosis rang greatly, sometimes as young as 2 or as mature as 75 years of age. However, the most common ages of diagnosis range between 20 – 50 years old.
Who gets Multiple Sclerosis ?
Although, MS is assumed not to be inherited there are studies that prove that factors related to genetic risk greatly increase the development of MS. However, environmental factors can also contribute such as the following: smoking cigarettes and low Vitamin D. Within the last 50 years there has been an increasing gender difference which suggests women are two to three times more likely to develop MS than men.
How many people are affected?
There are over 2.3 million individuals battling MS globally. According to www.nationalmssociety.org “the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC does not require U.S. physicians to report new cases and because symptoms can be completely invisible, the prevalence of MS in the U.S. can only be estimated.”
You might be wondering how you can get involved and in what capacity. Fortunately, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society has a wide variety of events that include:
- Walk MS
- Bike MS
- Muckfest MS
- Challenge Walk MS
- Do it yourself fundraising MS
- Finish MS
If you are interested in getting involved in another manner the National Multiple Sclerosis Society has just the right thing for you which encompasses the following:
- Advocate for Change
- Join the Community
- Raise Awareness
- Connect in your area
The Allen School of Health Sciences encourages you to learn more about this chronic disease and make an effort to raise awareness. Click on www.nationalmssociety.org to learn more about Multiple Sclerosis and how to get involved in your local area.