What triggers? What symptoms?

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New Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 12/4/2008 12:59 PM (GMT -7)   
Being so new to this whole MS thing, I've taken most of my information from articles on the internet, which seem to be the same two articles regurgitated in numerous places.  So, I thought I'd turn to you all -- the real experts -- to ask this question.  I know people talk about heat (particularly a hot shower, for example) as being a trigger for MS symptoms.  What other triggers do you all experience?  Because at the moment, I have no idea what's triggering my symptoms.  And I read the debate here about diet Coke, but I have to admit, having known nothing of the controversial feelings of those here about it, diet soda is the ONLY thing I had felt I was able to isolate as making my symptoms worse.  I cut it out in the beginning of September and after a month, the symptoms seemed to get milder in some very definite ways (although there's clearly something else triggering as well -- I just don't get the shooting pain down my arm, but I'm still getting other problems, and that was before my mri and spinal tap).  That being said, though, I think I'm extremely sensitive to chemicals of all kinds, so that might be what's going on there.
Anyway, long story short... what triggers set you off?  And what do you do (short of meds) to control your symptoms?
Thanks in advance!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 2146
   Posted 12/4/2008 7:07 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey Valerie

No worries on the diet coke issue. U are grasping for info and we understand that of course. The whole diet coke thing is really referring to the sweetener Aspertane. It is known to cause ms type symptoms in some people and usually after prolonged consumption. It is NOT a symptom trigger for ms. It is merely a ms mimic within the correct useage perimeters.

MS is different in everyone. Yes, heat is a known common trigger for some people, but not for all. U will likely come to realize u'r own personal triggers over time, but a few other known triggers can be things like overdoing it. Many find that when they push to do more than they should... more than their personal known limit...they will feel MS fatigue. Things like riding bikes or walking or exercising vigorously ...more than their personal known limit....will make u feel extremely tired and weak.

I'm sure others will be along soon to give u their input, but this is what i can recall for now. I don't have ms, so i'm not speaking from personal experience, thus no historical notes to add beyond this.

Co-Moderator, MS Forum
*~*Sometimes the Lord calms the storm. Sometimes He lets the storm rage and calms His child.*~*
Things that make u go hummmm......
*I wonder how much deeper the ocean would be without sponges.*
*One day without sunshine is like...um..well...night?*

Post Edited (rhondab) : 12/4/2008 10:46:11 PM (GMT-7)

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 3550
   Posted 12/4/2008 9:48 PM (GMT -7)   
This is a great thread.  One thing you should know is that there are very few patterns with MS. Everyone is different. Everyone has slightly different locations of the brain that is being damaged.  That tends to dictate the type of symptoms you have. 
My triggers are heat, any kind of illness (cold, fever, allergies ), my menstrual cycle, too much visual stimulation ( walking around in a very busy mall..........ew ) and fatigue. 
Gretchen       co-moderator MS board       diagnosed with MS July 2006
I have no lesions on my soul and so I will live with no limits.

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 271
   Posted 12/7/2008 2:21 AM (GMT -7)   
I agree, triggers are really individual. Heat is definitely a bad one & I try to stay cool or the weakness gets bad, stress is bad & doing too much, but this month I discovered a new one. I went out with friends who ordered fried fish, chips, battered prawns & battered calamari. Now I never eat fried food cos fat is meant to be bad for MS but I thought once would not matter. When I went home I had a bath like I always do, then found I was too weak to get out the bath. Took me about 15 minutes before I managed and the weakness lasted the next 3 days. I don't think I will be eating fried food again in a hurry. All the best.
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