Monday, May 31, 2010

Being Proactive

Well, its another dreary day...welcome to the 'Wet'coast...and since I don't have to work today...or any other day, :(  I thought I would share my thoughts on things I am doing, and/or planning to do to support my recovery before and after my potential liberation.

There's a part of me that is saying "don't get ahead of yourself Moni...you don't even know if you have CCSVI" which is battling with the "need to be organized/plan ad nauseum part of me".  I adhere to the Boy Scouts' motto, "Be Prepared".  Be prepared for whatever the outcome from this journey throws at me...be it physical and/or emotional.

You see, I'm a bit of a 'control freak'.  I never realized I was until I had to share my classroom with another teacher because I couldn't work full time.  That was an eye-opener!  And having MS has really challenged the 'control freak' in me, because it's made me realize that no one is truly in control of anything.  I don't control when my MS decides to flare up, I don't control how I'm going to be feeling when I get up in the morning...that's a crap shoot.  So what does a 'control freak' do to deal with this sense of being out of control?...I control the things I can!

This means I follow a strict regimen:  diet, supplements, massage therapy, reflexology, regular visits with my naturopath (B12 injections), exercise (hmmm...not so strict on this one), plenty of rest.  Until the whole CCSVI theory hit the web, most of my focus has been on supporting the nervous system and alleviating inflammation, as per the immunological theory.  The CCSVI theory now has me rethinking how I approach my MS as far as supplements and complementary therapies go.

So here's what I'm thinking/doing:

  1. Talk with Naturopath about stopping B12 injections, as I don't think its helping as much as it did initially (was for nerves and fatigue) (I'm taking a Vit. B complex as well)  Also ask about supporting vein walls/vascular system, right now, in preparation for potential treatment.  My reflexologist suggested this, which makes sense to me...if there is a chance that I could restenose, why not try to make the vein walls as sturdy as possible to help prevent this?  I don't know if you can do that (I know Vit. D helps) but I also have heard Selenium mentioned. 
  2. Review the supplements I am taking and see if I need to add or delete any, with an eye towards supporting veins (is this part of the circulatory or the cardiovascular system, or both??) Might be a good idea to find out for sure :)  
  3. I'm forcing myself to take the dog for a walk EVERY day, regardless of how I am feeling.  Currently this means around the block (500m). I think I can manage that. LOL
  4. Look into chelation!  I want to spend some time on this one because I see a lot of potential with this...but only AFTER liberation.  Here's why:  I read a research paper on a study that looked at a condition that caused too much iron deposition in the brain (sound familiar?!) but it wasn't MS.  Anyways, they wanted to see if oral chelation would help alleviate the symptoms (mobility, spasticity) and guess what...they did.  So, apply this to what we know about CCSVI and MS.  Most MS patients have too much iron in their brain which (i think) causes our body to attack the toxins created by the iron.  Logically then, it would make sense to get rid of the excess iron in the brain.  However, it doesn't make any sense to do it before your veins are flowing freely because you'd still be getting reflux back into the brain (according to the theory) and therefore more iron.  So you should wait until the veins are draining properly.  Now, I've done chelation and my body reacted quite strongly to it (it felt like I was having a relapse) which can happen.  So my plan is, and this is all contingent on my having the procedure, to wait about six months after I've been liberated (giving my body time to adjust) and then do the chelation...unless my naturopath suggests otherwise.:)
  5. Continue with massage therapy and reflexology, but think about adding acupuncture.  When I first started having symptoms (numbness in fingers) I actually went to see a doctor of Chinese medicine who performed acupuncture on me.  The interesting thing about this experience is that, after 3 sessions, she told me that it would be a waste of my money and time to continue coming to see her because the problem was in my brain and she couldn't 'fix' that.  Hmmmm....???  So I'm wondering, if you know it might be a circulatory/vascular issue, if acupuncture would help that?  
  6. And lastly, but certainly not least, continue with my diet.  I've been on this diet for almost 2 years now and I'm at a point where I'm actually afraid to go off it, for fear that I will feel worse, that the restless leg syndrome will come back, and...gasp...that I'll gain the weight back that I lost!
So, there's my action plan for now.  The 'control freak' inside of me is happy.

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