Palliative care provides support and resources to people living with serious illnesses such as multiple sclerosis. The goal of palliative care isn’t necessarily to cure the illness, but rather to provide relief from symptoms and help with quality-of-life issues. Learning when to consider palliative treatment options and therapies can help you decide if it’s right for your family member.
What Is MS?
Multiple sclerosis is a chronic disease in which the body’s immune system attacks its own myelin, or insulating, tissue that covers and protects nerve fibers. This slows down communication between the brain and the rest of the body. It affects millions of people around the world. Common symptoms of MS include dizziness, extreme fatigue, muscle spasms, difficulty walking, balance problems, bladder or bowel control issues, memory loss, and sometimes cognitive impairment.
Difficult Symptoms of MS
Multiple sclerosis can cause a variety of symptoms that are difficult to manage alone on a daily basis, including vision problems and impaired mobility. If your family member experiences any of these symptoms along with pain or anxiety related to multiple sclerosis, she may want to explore palliative treatment options. Palliative care professionals can come to your family member’s home, helping her right there where she needs it most.
Goals in Palliative Care
Palliative care is typically recommended when a person’s medical condition is difficult to treat without some additional assistance. The main focus for palliative treatments is focusing on quality of life and ensuring that your family member has the best possible situation for her current health and goals. Palliative care professionals work with your family member to determine what she wants from her treatment options and how to mesh those wants and needs with her medical provider’s care plan.
How Palliative Treatments Help MS
Palliative treatments are going to vary for your family member depending on what symptoms are most problematic for her at any given time. Your family member’s palliative therapy team helps her to keep track of what she’s experiencing and how it’s impacting her life. There may be a lot of emotions right after diagnosis, for instance. Working with a counselor can help significantly. Over time, your family member can build up a toolbox of treatment options that help her on a regular basis.
When Should You Look into Palliative Treatments?
Palliative care is available from the moment your family member is diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. The palliative treatments work with her curative care plan to help her manage her symptoms as well as possible. While her doctor’s primary care plan may focus on doing as much to maintain function as possible and manage the condition, palliative treatment plans work to help your family member access services such as massage therapy to lessen pain. Starting with palliative options sooner rather than later can offer your family member a great deal more relief than if she waits.
Finding the right treatment options for your family member’s needs and wants is so important. Having palliative care providers there to offer help and advice can mean quite a lot as your family member learns to deal with her health issues.
Our division, Ardent Supportive Care, offers palliative care services in Denton and Collin Counties. If you or a loved-one is considering Palliative Care in Dallas, TX please contact the caring staff at Ardent Healthcare today. 469-348-0670