Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a lifelong condition that affects the brain and spinal cord, causing a range of problems for the affected individual. Although there’s no known cure for MS, there are treatments that can help with managing symptoms and slowing the progression of the disease. However, the condition manifests itself differently in different people, due to which healthcare providers provide uniquely-tailored treatment plans to each individual.

Disease-Modifying Drugs

These drugs reduce the severity and frequency of MS episodes and relapses. The medications can also help bring the growth of lesions under control. The FDA has approved a number of disease-modifying drugs that come in the form of oral treatments, infusions, and injectables.

Oral treatments: The five drugs that can be taken in the pill form by mouth include teriflunomide (Aubagio), dimethyl fumarate (Tecfidera), fingolimod (Gilenya), siponimod (Mayzent), and cladribine (Mavenclad). Patients may also be asked to take capsules like ozanimod (Zeposia) and diroximel fumarate (Vumerity).

Infusion: The infusions that can be given to patients at licensed clinics include alemtuzumab (Lemtrada), ocrelizumab (Ocrevus), natalizumab (Tysabri), and mitoxantrone (Novantrone).

Injectables: There are four medications that can be given in the form of injectables. These include interferon beta-1a (Avonex, Rebif), pegylated interferon beta-1a (Plegridy), interferon beta-1b (Betaseron and Extavia), and glatiramer acetate (Copaxone and Glatopa).

Stem Cell Therapy

This is another form of treatment that has been showing promise in helping treat the neural damage caused by MS. The process is still not completely understood, but studies are being conducted to know more about how stem cell therapy can help.

Diet

While there is no evidence that a particular diet can help with MS, eating a healthy and balanced diet is a good idea.

Exercise

Physical activity can help improve cardiovascular strength, muscle strength, cognitive functioning, and even your mood. If you have MS, it’s best to start with basic stretches while you are still sitting on the bed. Once you’re comfortable doing the more basic exercises, you can include things like walking, water exercise, dancing, or swimming into your routine.

Remember that each person’s MS symptoms will vary, so it’s important that you consult your healthcare provider before making any changes to your treatment, diet, or exercise plan.