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How to Cope With Your MS Fatigue

By Daryl H. Bryant (714 words)
Posted in Living with MS on March 19, 2015

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How to Cope With Your MS Fatigue

When you suffer from Multiple Sclerosis, you will experience fatigue on a regular basis. Your body will exhaust itself as it continually fights against the attacks to your immune system, often making you too tired to enjoy your favorite hobbies or even finish your daily routines. MS fatigue can put a damper on your social life as well. However, by properly coping with your MS fatigue and learning to take rests throughout your day, you can maintain a regular schedule of daily activities. These tips will help you cope with your MS fatigue in a healthy way.

Maintain a Regular Sleep Schedule

When you go to bed at the same time every night and wake up at the same time every morning, you regulate your body’s internal clock. This will give you more energy throughout the day. You don’t need to fall asleep and wake up at the exact same time, but doing so within the same hour at least will work wonders on your energy levels.

If you’re a night owl, you can make your bedtime as late as you want. Just make sure you are getting the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep. Never sacrifice sleep to finish work or hang out late with friends. If you have to cut social outings short because of bed time, do not be afraid to do so. Throwing off your internal clock can be days spent exhausted as you struggle to try and make up for it.

Exercise Every Other Day

If you’re able, exercise is the surest way to boost your energy levels and cope with fatigue. Although it sounds as if you’ll only be more tired after a workout, the opposite is true. The endorphins released will elevate your mood, and the calories you burn boosts your metabolism, giving you more energy throughout the day. You don’t have to exercise with an elaborate routine. Simple and light workouts, especially after lunch, will give you that much needed boost to make it through the afternoon slump around 3pm and you can ride the energy well into the evening.

Start a Healthy Diet

If you’ve been diagnosed with MS, then you know how important a healthy diet can be for regulating symptoms. The same applies to energy levels. If you find that your MS fatigue is especially exhausting, change your diet around so you can consume more foods with natural energy boosters.

During the day, do not eat hot meals. Stick to cool snacks, like fresh fruit, and eat a lunch made up of fresh veggies and cold cuts as this will give you some much needed protein. The natural sugars in your fruits and vegetables will give you a natural energy boost and, when combined with a light, after-lunch workout, you’ll start to notice positive changes in your energy levels.

Keep Life Simple and Avoid Stress

Even for those without MS, stress is one of the leading causes of fatigue. If you are constantly worrying about your job, your symptoms, or your medication, you may start to notice an increase in your fatigue. Rather than feeling overwhelmed by everything you have to do, start making a schedule for your life where you can easily prioritize your tasks and activities. This will give you the opportunity to look at your stressors and organize them accordingly.

You can see which tasks you can complete immediately, which can wait, and which can be delegated to friends and family members who are willing to help. Reducing your stress will be helpful as you cope with your fatigue, and by organizing your life in this way, you’ll be better able to pay attention to what’s important and enjoy the little things as they come along.

How are you coping with your MS fatigue?

Coping with your MS fatigue can be as easy as exercising and eating healthy, but discuss other options with your doctor if you find that you are still tired after trying out these tips. There are many medications that you can be prescribed that promote wakefulness and alertness, and there are others that can help you regulate your sleep schedule. Remember that it’s possible to manage your MS symptoms. Start a conversation about your MS fatigue and explore all possible options with your doctor until you find one that works for you. 

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