Why multiple sclerosis makes me anxious

Why multiple sclerosis makes me anxious

Multiple sclerosis can make people anxious

Multiple sclerosis is a scary disease. It’s progressive and unpredictable.  As it progresses you become less capable of undertaking physical activities. You are very aware of its progress. It is no great surprise that sufferers are apprehensive of what the future holds for them. This uncertainty is often the cause of stress and anxiety.

Why multiple sclerosis makes me anxious

Unless you are a sufferer or know someone really well who has the disease then I believe it is very difficult to understand the implications of multiple sclerosis.

Looking back

At the time of my diagnosis in 1994 I had never heard of multiple sclerosis. That was before the internet and Google. I had to look it up in an encyclopaedia but that did not help me. I was lucky; the disease had no impact on me then.

Ten years later

The disease started to have an effect upon my life that I could no longer ignore. It had evolved into secondary progressive and there was no treatment to stop the progression. By now I was definitely not the person I used to be.


It is always there

I went into denial

I tried really hard to be a happy man. If you met me you would hardly know I suffered from multiple sclerosis. I kept it bottled up. My family and a few friends were the only people who knew my problems.

Reality kicks in

2009, I was 55 and I had changed during the previous few years. I was angry. I worried over what the future held for me. Something made the anxiety turn to moodiness and then to bad bouts of unhappiness?

I was not a happy bunny.

It was the multiple sclerosis. In 2012 I had to take medical retirement. Suddenly I had no income and only a small pension.

Now my world is differeent

I freely admit I can no longer do things that I enjoyed doing. A cure seems a remote possibility but I must be positive. I have learned to help myself by taking exercise. I keep myself very busy and I have developed new skills. This has reduced the levels of stress.

The future

This is the big unknown. Will the disease get significantly worse? How bad will it get? Small wonder I ask why multiple sclerosis manes me anxious.

I must be positive

Compared to so many other people I meet who were diagnosed with MS 15 or more years ago I am lucky. I have had the disease for nearly 45 years. I do have my ups and downs and still get anxious. Nowadays I am more content.

4th December

8 responses to “Why multiple sclerosis makes me anxious”

  1. Christine Birch says:

    Hi Patrick. Read your etc. Unfortunately, I have MS diagnosed 1993. I also have Lupus SLE since 2008. Also, due to a near fatal accident in 1972 fracturating my skull many times, also had fits, put on medication for 10yrs. No problem, however my my balance has worsened, and fall. However Jan. 2016, I knocked my head and a wk. later and
    nearly died as I needed resuscitation by Pararmetic. This was connected with my brain damage back in 1973! I now take medication for rest of life.
    My husband & I are going to relocate to Spain, where at least I can keep warm. I hope you can appreciate that other MS sufferers have additional problems as well.
    Yours sincerely, Christine Birch

    • Hello Christine

      I am well aware that MS does not preclude other medical issues. I live in fear of falling over and breaking a bone. I am lucky in that I only suffer from MS even though I have had it since 1972 but not diagnosed until 95. I hope that you enjoy Spain and the warm weather. I wish you all the best and do keep in touch with the website

  2. Richard Leakey says:

    They say I have the Benign form of MS but it doesn’t feel that way to me. I was diagnosed in 2008 after many years of thinking something was wrong. Back in1990 I used to struggle with my left leg when walking and was convinced that because I smoked, all my arteries were clogged up with rubbish. I was still working in those days . The doc said that my blood circulation was ok so I was none the wiser. Later, probably in 2006 or so, things on the walking front forced me to go to an osteopath as my poor walking lead to a severe pain in my lower back. After spending several visits and several hundred pounds to release a suspected trapped nerve the osteopath proved not to be the answer and more and more I developed a mild form of leg spasm. It may have been the osteopath who tipped off the doctor that things were not right and this may have lead to the first MRI scan. So my story maybe that I have had MS for as long as 27 years or so and I am just about to give up trying to play golf in a buggie. For the last couple of years I have been able to stand and swing from the waist. Now my balance and leg weaknesses mean I can hit the ball a reducing distance in every direction other than the right one. I have foot drop and I am also falling over a fair bit and people don’t like playing with me in case I should hurt myself. Over this last 2 months I have tripped over twice at home and hurt ribs on both occasions and nose, arm and forehead once. We’ve now removed the offending rugs. We have a large garden and a large old house and soon we must find somewhere more manageable. I see the MS nurse once a year but not sure why. What will happen next I wonder. I am still driving, I’m 73, can just get in and out of the bath. I can cut the grass on a sit on but when that breaks I’ll be beggared. I am positive though and use winston churchill’s favourite saying. kBO!
    It’s helpful to hear of your greater probs and how you cope.

    • Hello Richard,

      Like you I am incredibly positive and that is how I cope. Yes I do have set backs but what the hell I just get up and carry on. Its the only way

  3. trudi says:

    thanks for sharing. I was only 46 when boarded but I decided this will not get me down. reading up on ms and knowing not a death sentence made me strong. be honest and smile. people are nice!

    • Hello Trudi,

      You are quite right, a smile does go a long way. MS us not a death sentence but it can make me feel frustrated, angry, sometimes quite cross and worst of all it makes me anxious.

      You are quite right, people are fundamentally good, kind and helpful.

  4. JUDY EPSTEIN says:

    I was told I had ms in 1991/92 and didn’t really believe anything was (seriously) wrong with
    me. I bounced back right away carrying on with my energetic life.There was only one medication (Interferon) which I told the U of Rochester MRI diagoser I didn’t want. Now 32 years later and past menopause I wish I’d known that that condition can affect ms woman, called SPMS. I wish someone had known and communicated it to ME & all women re the best approaches to take. Did those in the medical world know? I hazard to say that no , they might not have known that hormones played a protective part. So I do a lot of research and act accordingly on what I find, excercise, have an impeccable lifestyle and be with what is. I live in the UK and through experience, don’t expect the doctor to contact me with what great find he/she has. I share knowledge with other spms-ers, Thanks for reading.xo

    • Hello Judy,

      At diagnosis in 94/95 the consultant said come back in 6 months time, thank you very much. Knowing what I know now and my present condition could interferon have helped me at diagnosis? I think people thought my MS was benign but the clock was ticking. 24 years later still ticking.

      I’m a bit fatalistic but I keep my self busy and try to be as healthy as possible. Possibly a tad more exercise might be a good idea but I don’t do too badly. Trying to be positive is vital and this website is very therapeutic. People who are positive develope their own individual coping mechanism

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