Treat Fatigue in Multiple Sclerosis
Fatigue in multiple sclerosis is an overwhelming and debilitating tiredness. The feeling can be physical and mental. Fatigue affects ability to carry out responsibilities and maintain relationships. People with multiple sclerosis can take steps to control fatigue and ultimately improve the quality of home and work life.
1. Increase sleep. Address any multiple sclerosis problems that interrupt night time sleep. These often include incontinence and muscle spasms. Fatigue mounts during the day. While at home, take naps. At work use the lunch break for a short nap.
2. Conserve physical energy. Use a walker or wheelchair. Shop on the Internet or telephone with home delivery. Give tiresome household chores to other family members. Select restful recreational activities. At work request any accommodations that will reduce physical fatigue.
3. Conserve mental energy. Schedule activities requiring concentration for early morning before fatigue intensifies. Fatigue mounts through the work week for those with multiple sclerosis, so schedule important meetings early in the week after a restful weekend.
4. Lower body temperature. Heat triggers fatigue in multiple sclerosis. Turn down the thermostat significantly. Drink cold, non-alcoholic beverages. Use portable fans and other personal cooling devices especially when away from home.
5. Seek support from others with multiple sclerosis. They can share tips for preventing and managing fatigue. Social support also lessens depression which contributes to fatigue.
6. Take prescribed medication. Doctors often treat fatigue in multiple sclerosis with amantadine hydrochloride or modafinil. Both are taken by mouth daily.