Managing multiple sclerosis during pregnancy is a daunting process, given the countless physical and physiological changes that happen during this time. Studies suggest that pregnancy could have positive as well as negative impacts on this painful condition, with the relapse rate increasing to a significant level within the first three months after delivery. According to studies, multiple sclerosis has no negative influences on the fetus. While using the prescribed MS drugs are generally considered safe, it is advisable to refrain from using cyclophosphamide and methotrexate.
Along with taking proper medications, you need to pay some care about certain other factors of life to ensure that your pregnancy progresses in a smooth. This being said, here are what the expecting mothers can do to manage MS during this life changing days.
1. Add Veggies To Your Diet
Apart from being good for the overall health of the patient, the green leafy veggies such as spinach, kale, cucumbers, broccoli, and cabbage offer MS patients a lot of phytonutrients that can benefit the health of the fetus too. This keeps the body in good shape and puts the patient on a faster path to recovery, while managing the symptoms of MS.
2. Include Ginger And Turmeric In Your Diet Regularly
Ginger and turmeric are both anti-inflammatory foods. Studies suggest that both have proven to be immensely effective against a wide range of auto-immune diseases, including multiple sclerosis. While turmeric halts the progression, ginger offers relief from the pain incurred due to this condition. Prepare a tea by simmering 1 inch ginger piece and 1 tsp turmeric powder. Sweeten as desired and sip one cup a day for better management of MS.
3. Yoga For Multiple Sclerosis
According to a study, pregnant women with MS who included yoga in their lifestyle experienced lesser levels of fatigue and pain as against the non-practitioners of yoga. Along with various poses such as Baby Pose and Downward Facing Dog pose that can be modified using props, regular practice of gentle breathing procedures will help in alleviating the stress levels associated with MS. The blood circulation improves, offering you an opportunity to handle pain and inflammation in a better way.
4. Drink Cranberry Juice
The reputation of cranberry juice as a natural antidote for urinary tract infection is very high. And this is one the major symptoms of multiple sclerosis too. Try to include two glasses of no sugar added cranberry juice in your diet to ease off your MS and the urinary infections.
5. Take Care Of The Vitamin D
Pregnant women suffering from multiple sclerosis have lesser potential for adequate calcium absorption. This, most probably, arises from the lack of vitamin D, quite commonly seen in MS sufferers. So, include vitamin D adequately in your diet in the form of supplements or as per your doctor’s advice to eliminate the risk of osteoporosis. Calcium and vitamin D are also essential to ensure the proper growth of fetus.
6. Keep Your Body Temperature Normal
Hot flashes are quite common in cases of multiple sclerosis. And, when the body temperature elevates beyond a certain limit, the condition worsens. Pregnancy adds to the woes as dehydration while being pregnant induces unwanted stress in the body. So keep yourself hydrated to avoid this condition.
MS causes cognitive impairment in terms of memory, attention and regulating moods. Mindfulness meditation has been proved to help with all these problems. Meditating is a very simple task. Just find a spot of your choice and sit down in your most comfortable way. Close your eyes and take deep breaths. Focus on your breath and let go off any and all thoughts that are eating you. Just 15 minutes a day can change the way you handle multiple sclerosis. Play a meditational sound to enable you to go deeper into the practice.
8. Use Coenzyme Q10
Various studies conducted on multiple sclerosis suggest that taking a coenzyme Q10 supplement can help in alleviating the symptoms of MS by triggering an anti-inflammatory response in the body. It is an antioxidant that occurs naturally in the body, and supplements make it easier for the body to absorb it in greater quantities.
A good diet, healthy exercise routine, regular checkups and these natural remedies! You are sure to traverse through pregnancy in the smoothest way, even if you have MS. So, ready for the journey?
Take care and stay safe!