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Alternative Therapies for Multiple Sclerosis

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Alternative Therapies for Multiple Sclerosis

If you have multiple sclerosis, there are various medical treatments that can be used to manage your symptoms. These may include medications, physical therapy and rehabilitation; however, some people opt for alternative therapies like acupuncture, yoga, massage or herbal remedies as well.

These treatments are known as “complementary and alternative medicine” (CAM). They have long been practiced around the world, and many people with MS have turned to them as a way of managing their disease.

In the United States, CAM use is on the rise. Many people with MS use them in combination with their prescribed medication or other therapies. Research suggests that CAM may reduce both frequency and intensity of MS relapses for some patients.

Your likelihood of finding a treatment effective depends on several factors, including your symptoms and how far along you have made with regular MS treatment. It may take months before you know for certain if something is working or not.

Consult with your doctor about any CAM therapies you are thinking of trying. They can advise if a certain therapy is safe and has any potential side effects that could cause issues for you. Furthermore, they provide insight on people living with MS who have successfully utilized these treatments.

Some CAM treatments can reduce inflammation in the body and improve circulation, leaving you feeling less fatigued and possibly decreasing the number of MS attacks.

Magnet therapy is an energy-based medicine that sends electrical frequencies throughout the body to increase blood flow, oxygenate tissues and reduce pain for people with MS. Pulsed electromagnetic field therapy (PEMF) is the most popular type of magnet therapy.

Exercising is an excellent complementary medicine (CAM) treatment for MS that can increase energy, build muscle strength and enhance balance in those suffering from the disorder. Furthermore, exercising can help control weight and slow the progression of symptoms associated with MS.

Meditation is another CAM treatment that may be beneficial for people living with MS. It has been known to reduce anxiety, depression, improve memory retention and concentration levels.

Acupuncture can be an effective CAM treatment for those living with MS, particularly those experiencing severe spasticity. It may also reduce pins and needles sensations as well as other changes to sensory function.

Chiropractic is another CAM therapy that may be beneficial for people with MS, particularly those suffering from muscle stiffness and spasticity. Additionally, it improves balance and decreases joint pain.

Reflexology is an alternative medicine (CAM) treatment that may be beneficial for some people with MS, particularly those experiencing paresthesia (pins and needles sensation). According to the American Academy of Neurology’s guidelines, reflexology helps you feel more comfortable and relaxed when standing or sitting up from a sitting position.

Other complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapies that have shown promise include meditation, massage, relaxation and yoga. Unfortunately, these practices have not yet been thoroughly researched like others.

Though these complementary and alternative medicines (CAM therapies) have been found to be helpful, they cannot substitute for conventional medicine or specialized physical and occupational therapy. They should only be used in combination with other treatments in order to manage symptoms and prevent relapses.

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