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Caregiving for a Loved One with Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis MS Planning & Caregiving

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) can be unpredictable and abilities can change daily. Understanding the diagnosis, medications, management techniques and the at-home care plan will help the patient and caregiver be prepared and handle changes as they occur.

Ensuring the home is safe, accessible and comfortable is important to help reduce the chance of injury and to be prepared for mobility changes. When identifying adaptations to make in the home, talk to your health care team. Your doctor may refer you to a physical therapist or occupational therapist who will come to your home and provide suggestions on modifications to help the person with MS stay as independent as possible while ensuring accessibility and safety. Modifications may include ramps, widening of doorways, minor bath renovations, remote door openers and addition of mobility-assisting equipment.

Daily activities such as bathing, cooking, eating, taking medications and getting to doctor’s appointments may be difficult for the person with MS. Advice and training is available to help caregivers and patients learn how to modify daily activities and be comfortable with the identified treatment plan. If you are unsure of how to do something listed on the care plan, contact your health care team. They will walk you through the process to ensure you are comfortable and understand the best technique to caring for your loved one.

While information gathering with your healthcare team, the doctors will also share techniques for symptom management and strategies to deal with certain challenges. You may not need the information now, but since MS symptoms may change overnight, it is helpful to understand how to make certain activities easier such as safe transfers when bathing, dressing and toileting. This may also include administering injectable drugs and providing intermittent urinary catheterization.

Caregivers by WholeCare is here to help you care for your loved one with MS. Contact us at 615-298-9201 to learn how we can be a part of your health care team.

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