Multiple Sclerosis: 'My New Normal'
- Actress Christina Applegate, 50, announced she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2021; she has since stayed out of the public eye, but shares she has an event coming up and will be using a walking stick.
- Multiple sclerosis is an auto-immune disease that causes nerve damage.
- Symptoms of multiple sclerosis vary greatly from person to person; Some common symptoms to look out for include blurred or double vision, slurred speech, and numbness and weakness in your limbs, according to the Mayo Clinic.
- There are 400,000 people suffering from MS in the United States, according to scientific research. In Don’t Stop Me Now, SurvivorNetTV features the story of one incredible woman who, like Applegate, learns to overcome her own hardships, and inspires countless people along the way.
The Dead To Me actress, who many may also know as Kelly Bundy from Married with Children, announced last year her diagnosis of multiple sclerosis, which is an auto-immune disease that causes nerve damage in the brain and spinal cord.Read More
I have a very important ceremony coming up. This will be my first time out since diagnosed with MS. Walking sticks are now part of my new normal. Thank you @neowalksticks for these beauties. Stay tuned to see which ones make the cut for a week of stuff. pic.twitter.com/O543p1G4vS
— christina applegate (@1capplegate) October 27, 2022
Applegate is no stranger to a shocking diagnosis, as she is also a breast cancer survivor. However, according to scientific research, there is no known linkage between women diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and breast cancer.
In 2008 Applegate was diagnosed with breast cancer after doctors found something in her left breast, she then decided to have a double mastectomy. Additionally, she revealed to Today.com in 2017 that she also had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed as a precaution, due to her higher risk with ovarian cancer in her family. Applegate shared that she changed her lifestyle habits and advocates for more rest and less stress to stay healthy.
Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms
MS causes the immune system to attack the protective sheath (myelin) that covers nerve fibers which leads to communication problems between your brain and the rest of your body, according to the Mayo Clinic. Eventually, MS can cause permanent damage or deterioration of the nerves.
Signs and symptoms of MS can vary widely but may include the following, according to the Mayo Clinic:
- Numbness or weakness in one or more limbs that typically occurs on one side of your body at a time, or your legs and trunk
- Electric-shock sensations that occur with certain neck movements, especially bending the neck forward (Lhermitte sign)
- Tremor, lack of coordination or unsteady gait
- Partial or complete loss of vision, usually in one eye at a time, often with pain during eye movement
- Prolonged double vision
- Blurry vision
- Slurred speech
- Tingling or pain in parts of your body
- Problems with sexual, bowel and bladder function
The Mayo Clinic also says most people with MS go through periods of new symptoms or relapses followed by quiet periods of disease remission. These relapses can develop over days or weeks and the remission periods can last for months or even years. Around half of patients will have symptoms steadily increase within 10 or 20 years from diagnosis, which is secondary-progressive MS, and that rate varies greatly between patients.
A fellow actress, Selma Blair, 50, is another inspirational example of thriving amid a major health battle with MS. The two seem to support each other via social media.
Get it. Congratulation MS sister pic.twitter.com/UlsCPVXr82
— christina applegate (@1capplegate) May 20, 2022
Blair recently made quite the splash on the reality show Dancing with the Stars. Sadly, though, she had to withdraw from the intense competition due a change in her health relating to her ongoing health issues.
Inspiring Stories For People With Multiple Sclerosis
As a part of our effort to support people with chronic conditions like Multiple Sclerosis, SurvivorNetTV has added a new block of programming specific to MS. It is our hope that these films inspire the nearly 1 million people living with MS in the United States.
SurvivorNetTV’s film Defying All Odds, follows the story of Dr. Terry Wahls – a world-renowned doctor and scientist determined to continue practicing medicine even after being diagnosed with a severe form of multiple sclerosis (MS).
You will see in the film that Dr. Wahls attempts to manage her condition by starting a paleo diet, which consisted mainly of grass-fed meat, fish, leafy and root vegetables, and nuts. She restricted her consumption of dairy, eggs, and grains. As a result of her new diet, Dr. Wahls and her colleagues saw incredible improvement in her health.
With assistance from Abigail Seaberg and Marisa Sullivan