About MSAA

As a national nonprofit organization, the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America is a leading resource for the entire MS community, improving lives today through vital services and support. MSAA provides free programs and services, such as: a toll-free Helpline; award-winning publications including a magazine, The Motivator; website featuring educational videos and research updates; S.E.A.R.C.H.™ program to assist the MS community with learning about different treatment choices; a mobile phone app, My MS Manager™; a resource database, My MS Resource Locator; equipment distribution ranging from grab bars to wheelchairs; cooling accessories for heat-sensitive individuals; educational events and activities; MRI funding and insurance advocacy; and more. For additional information, please visit http://www.mymsaa.org or call (800) 532-7667.

Despite it All

By Chernise Joseph

This month’s topic really got me to thinking.

We’re in the middle of a global pandemic (as I’m sure you all are more than exhausted with hearing about and being afraid of), Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and unfortunately so many of us have lost loved ones that won’t be at the dinner table this year.

For my family, the holidays have always been hard. A couple of years ago, Continue reading

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Feeling Connected

By Stacie Prada

Feeling connected is different than connecting. I can go long periods of time without seeing or talking to some people, and when we see each other we continue as if there’s been no gap in time. Others I worry when it’s been a while. Usually it’s not because of how we are interacting, but because I feel guilty for not reaching out more or doing more.

ConnectionWhen MS is giving me a hard time, I’m often drawn to Continue reading

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Staying Connected This Holiday Season

By Alene Brennan

The holiday season is often filled with traditions that we look forward to all year long.

There are two moments that I look forward to most each year. Thanksgiving dinner with my extended family where we gather to enjoy good food and laughter together. It’s all about the relationships.

I also love the candlelit Christmas Eve church service that provides such a special feeling inside. Being surrounded with everyone in their holiday attire, the lit Christmas tree and hearing the Christmas hymns, is powerful.

Knowing the holidays have a much different feel this year due to the pandemic, Continue reading

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Jump?

By Lauren Kovacs

I know this is tough. We don’t want to be a burden by trying to connect. I have to remind   myself to let my MS do the talking. We might be having a bad day and we might sound drunk. We might be beyond exhausted or having pain. Connecting with non-MSers can be hard.

You have to take care of you. I often “hit the wall” so to speak and just Continue reading

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Health Insurance Marketplace – 2021 Coverage

Yes, You Can Enroll in the Health Insurance Marketplace (ObamaCare) for 2021

“People with multiple sclerosis who do not have health insurance should absolutely consider enrolling or renewing their coverage in the 2021 Health Insurance Marketplace through the Affordable Care Act,” states Chris Sloan, Associate Principal from Avalere Health. Avalere is a widely respected healthcare consulting firm that has assisted MSAA in developing resources around the issue of copay accumulators and other important healthcare topics.

According to Mr. Sloan, the pending Supreme Court hearings Continue reading

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Meet the Board – Andrew Woo

MSAA strives to be a leading resource for the MS community by improving lives today through vital services and support – and we could not accomplish this without the help of our volunteer board members. MSAA’s Board of Directors is comprised of accomplished professionals from across the country who volunteer their time to further MSAA’s mission. With our ongoing series, Meet the Board, we hope to introduce you to our wonderful volunteer board members!

This month, MSAA is proud to highlight our newest board member Andrew Woo, MD, PhD. Continue reading

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I Thought I Had Lost My Smile

Anxiety

By Penelope Conway

Added stress for a person with multiple sclerosis is not ideal. Life is already challenging enough, but the added stress makes everything a gazillion times worse. Anxiety easily sets in. You get less sleep, more headaches, your appetite can be either non-existent or you want to eat everything in your cupboard, everybody gets on your nerves with stupid things like just saying hi to you in the morning, weakness increases, you notice the ringing in your ears more, and pain is through the roof. All the little symptoms you used to just accept are now Continue reading

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You Are Not Alone – Anxiety and Depression in MS

By Doug Ankerman

It is not easy.

Of all symptoms one can experience with multiple sclerosis, I find anxiety and depression to be the most challenging.

For foot drop — I wear an AFO. Heat tolerance — I put on a cooling vest. Balance issues — I use a rollator. But for anxiety and depression, there is no aid. No clunky piece of equipment to help you through. Continue reading

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Learning About Anxiety

By Stacie Prada

I get anxious, but I never considered I might have anxiety. I’ve heard people talk about how it feels to have panic attacks, and I know I haven’t experienced one. I thought of anxiety as something constant and debilitating. I do yoga, I laugh, I’m active, and I’m productive.  Having a diagnosis of anxiety doesn’t fit in with how I view myself.

But when I research anxiety, I realize that what may not be paralyzing for me could still fall perfectly under the anxiety umbrella.

Anxiety

Grinding teeth, nausea, headaches, problems sleeping Continue reading

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Zephyr

By Chernise Joseph (Zivvy)

Anxiety. I’m full of that right now.

It’s pretty common, but it still feels like something you’d see in a horror movie: it sneaks up on you, there’s some loud, dramatic cue of music, and then suddenly whatever else you’re doing feels irrelevant because now you have to run from It.

Tonight, I sat outside with my friends and watched the tree canopies above us get caught up in the wind. It’s a cool, breezy night Continue reading

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