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LATEST RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS ANXIETY EPIDEMIC  

George Pepper

Shift MS

 

• MAJORITY OF PEOPLE WITH MS SAY THE CONDITION TRIGGERS STRESS AND ANXIETY

• WHILE TWO IN THREE ACKNOWLEDGE THAT JUST THE “IDEA” OF HAVING A RELAPSE CAN BRING ONE ON

• OVER A THIRD BELIEVE GOVERNMENT SUPPORT HAS DECLINED OVER THE LAST DECADE

 

Stress. It's a part of everyday life, but for many people living with Multiple Sclerosis just the thought of having a relapse can cause anxiety, which in turn can be the trigger for a relapse itself – according to new research by a leading charity.

 

The research commissioned by Shift.ms explores the knock-on effect stress and anxiety has on those living with the condition, with three in four (75%) citing that the anxiety caused by just the thought of having an MS relapse can bring one on. 

 

The study – conducted to mark the charity’s 10-year anniversary – highlights the overwhelming impact that MS has on the life of someone living with disease.  The research indicates that the thought of relapsing causes anxiety and stress for two in the three (69%) while a similar number (64%) say it has prevented them from doing something in their lives.

 

An MS relapse is the flare-up or worsening of existing MS symptoms or the appearance of new ones. These include fatigue, numbness, pins and needles, loss of mobility, memory loss, bladder or bowel issues. 

 

PERCEIVED AS A CINDERELLA CONDITION?

There are an estimated 100,000 people living with MS in the UK, and over 2.5 million worldwide, yet the findings show the extent to which MSers feel invisible, with three in four (82%) commonly feeling that the public don’t understand the condition or take it seriously.

 

When experiencing the symptoms of MS, one in five (20%) say they would keep it to themselves, which can only add to the isolation commonly felt by MSers and take a further toll on their mental health.

 

When asked what’s changed over the last ten years, findings show that whilst healthcare, medicine and social media support have improved, MSers strongly feel government support is lacking when it comes to the illness.

 

More positively, and perhaps offsetting poor government engagement, over two-thirds of MSers felt social media support had improved or significantly improved over the decade, with a similar number feeling medicines available for Multiple Sclerosis had improved.

 

MS charity Shift.ms conducted the research to discover how life with MS has evolved for MSers since the charity was launched in 2009. Also timed to coincide with MS Awareness Week (22-28 April) and Stress Awareness Month (April), the survey highlights that anxiety is seriously damaging both the mental and physical health of those with MS. 

 

Joining us in the studio is George Pepper, Founder and CEO at Shift.ms, who is available to discuss the research and why charities likes Shift.ms are so important for those living with MS.

 

Let's Talk: Research highlights multiple sclerosis anxiety epidemic

Joining us in the studio is George Pepper, Founder and CEO at Shift.ms, who is available to discuss the research and why charities likes Shift.ms are so important for those living with MS.