To Know, Or Not To Know?

That is the question, at least today as it pertains to learning about the disease of MS. As we close in on a month dedicated to MS awareness, many individuals still do not know much about this rare disease. One challenge lies in the fact that the information available on MS can be very overwhelming at times, especially as the internet alone exudes multiple portals of literature and resources about the disease. This can sometimes have the opposite effect on education; rather than pulling people in to learn more, it actually sometimes intimidates people to the point where they shy away from learning more about it. This is completely understandable – MS can be difficult to understand and grasp, so it’s a process to educate oneself and others about it. So the question is, is it better to know, or not to know?

When MS touches the life of someone you know, love, interact with, or share a history with, it can be hard to comprehend what this disease is that’s affecting that person. If you didn’t have knowledge of what it was before, this may be a whole new learning process for you as well. Being part of someone’s support network keeps you tied into what’s going on in their daily experiences, so knowing what MS is and its process can help keep you informed of what they’re going through, and how you may be able to offer support when needed.

It’s not something that can be learned or taught overnight. It’s a process – and one that doesn’t have to be done alone. Talking about MS with family members, friends, peers and other support resources can aid in the significant education piece that comes with the disease. Learning more about it is the first step in knowing what it is and how you can offer your support. It can start with just an overview of MS information, and lead into further discussions and outreach. It’s also important to know that it’s ok to take your time learning about MS – review the information as you’re comfortable doing so at your own pace, and when you have questions reach out and ask. In the matter of MS, the act of knowing can be more beneficial than not.

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  • Carrie M says:

    i just learned that at or around 10 years after being diagnosed with MS it can turn for the worse to secondary progressive MS. I know this because I never fully recovered from my last horrible relapse in December. Despite solumedrol and prednisone Treatments and continuous use of copaxone. My neurologist says it’s probably progressed. I didn’t even know it could/ would do that!!! More depressing things from our unwelcome friend, MS

    • Angel says:

      Thank you for reaching out. MS can be very unpredictable and unique at times in the way in can present and progress-it is difficult to determine the course of the disease and if/how it may progress for individuals. Hopefully with continued follow up care and guidance from your doctor they can address your symptoms to help you manage the issues being experienced. If you have further questions please contact MSAA’s Helpline at Take care.

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