There are many chronic neuromuscular degenerative diseases out there. Living with any one of them is never easy. Among all the problems they create for diagnosed individuals, one effect they share is negatively impacted mobility. Muscle weakness and fatigue are common symptoms, but these illnesses go much deeper. Today, let’s explore how such diseases can affect movement.
A good sense of balance is imperative to being able to get around safely. Chronic neuromuscular degenerative diseases, such as Multiple Sclerosis, are diagnosed based on a range of mobility-focused symptoms. Among them, the balance of the individual in question is considered. Poor balance can lead to a higher likelihood of slips, trips, fumbles, and falls, and an injured person may develop further health complications as a result.
Numbness and Other Similar Sensations
Consider how it feels when your foot “falls asleep” and, despite your attempts to walk on it, there’s just no way to make it happen for a few seconds. Now, imagine if that unpleasant feeling lasted for much longer or were even permanent. This is a common struggle faced by those with neuromuscular diseases that inhibit mobility. Along with numbness and tingling, they may also experience painful sensations that limit how much they can move.
Muscle Weakness and Loss
The primary contributor to a loss of mobility and independence is the weakening of muscles over time. In some cases, this can lead to almost complete muscle loss. Individuals with Muscular Dystrophy and other similar illnesses are prone to losing their physical strength to the point where it becomes difficult to move an arm or leg without help.
Impermanent Loss of Mobility is Preventable or Reversible
It is possible for the person affected by the disease to become discouraged by the lack of mobility. Also, when someone requires assistance for simple daily living activities, it’s easy to become lethargic. Inactivity often contributes further to the loss of muscle strength and this may be unrelated to the progression of the neuromuscular disease. Therefore, it’s important to monitor the person’s function-abilities and prescribe appropriate exercises for specific motions to ensure optimal mobility and independence, especially during the early stages of the disease. Properly designed exercises with the right equipment can prevent unnecessary muscle loss and prolong the affected person’s mobility and independence as long as possible.
If there is temporary loss of muscle strength because of the lack of use, not because the progression of the neuromuscular disease, restoration of muscular strength is possible with proper exercises and equipment. In these cases, the affected persons can actually improve their mobility and regain independence.
Loss of Movement and Cognitive Functionality
Later stages of some chronic neuromuscular degenerative diseases can make getting around independently increasingly difficult. In some cases, it can become difficult for the person to swallow, eat, or even talk, let alone walk or stand without assistance. As these illnesses advance, patients become more dependent on round-the-clock care services to stay safe, get sufficient nutrition, and have their needs looked after. This is due to the fact that muscular and cognitive functions can be extremely limited in such cases, with the patient being unable to control their own body.
Illnesses such as Myopathy, Muscular Dystrophy, and even Alzheimer’s Disease can be challenging to face in later stages, especially when mobility becomes severely limited or outright impossible. However, know that you and your loved ones don’t have to face it alone.
Through our partnership with NeuroGymRehab, the Choice Homecare Ottawa team is happy to help you make more progress. Give us a call at 613-907-3191 to find out how Choice Homecare can help.