Modern Therapy spent this Sunday walking at the Lake Como Walk MS event to raise awareness for Multiple Sclerosis. Walk MS is hosted by the national MS Society, who is the largest private funder of MS research in the world. Each year, 300,000 people participate in more than 400 Walk MS events! Walk MS brings together a community of passionate people to connect and raise funds to change the world for everyone affected by multiple sclerosis. Since 1988, these walks have raised more than $1 billion to drive groundbreaking research, provided life-changing services and guaranteed a supportive community for those who need it most.
What is Multiple Sclerosis (MS)?
Multiple Sclerosis is a disease in which the immune system eats away at the protective covering of the bodies nerves. The cause of MS is still unknown – scientists believe the disease is triggered by an as-yet-unidentified environmental factor in a person who is genetically predisposed to respond. The progress, severity, and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted. However, most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with at least two to three times more women than men being diagnosed with the disease.
How does it affect one's mental health?
In addition to its physical effects, MS has profound emotional consequences. At first, it may be difficult to adjust to the diagnosis of a disorder that is unpredictable, has a fluctuating course, and carries a risk of progressing over time to some level of physical disability. Lack of knowledge about the disease adds to the anxieties commonly experienced by people who are newly diagnosed. In addition to these emotional reactions to the disease, demyelination and damage to nerve fibers in the brain can also result in emotional changes. Some of the medications used in MS — such as corticosteroids — can also have significant effects on the emotions. In the face of MS, people may tend to focus primarily on their physical health and neglect their emotional health, which is an essential component of overall health and wellness.
Co-founders Brandon and Cassie Christensen have been participating in the MS Walk for 5 consecutive years. The cause is close to them because a close family friend lives with MS. This year's event had a great turnout! The walk consisted of a 3 mile loop around Lake Como - a beach town in Monmouth County, New Jersey. Here are some pictures from the event!