Sorry to post anon but it is a risky issue. I used to be quite the risk taker and rock and roll party person. I took some class a drugs. Umm, but some I mean, quite a lot…for about 2 or 3 years…Just before DX… Also in my Uni years I dabbled as we do in mind altering substances. Anyone else in the same boat. I have always secretly blamed this and myself for my MS… Silly perhaps?
Your feedback would be highly appreciated.
I think most of us have a little voice in our head telling us that God, or Fate, or Karma, or The Great Grown-up in the Sky, or whatever we believe in, or half believe in, will judge and punish us for being bad. We automatically try to make sense of anything bad that happens to us in terms of retribution for something that has gone before that we feel guilty about - particularly if we enjoyed it!
I don’t think MS works that way though. Please relax and let yourself off the hook here. Filtered word happens, that’s all.
If there’s ANY link with recreational drugs, they haven’t found it yet.
There are very few lifestyle factors that have been shown to have any influence at all on the chances of someone developing MS.
Smoking, unfortunately (i.e. just tobacco), is one of them - but that doesn’t make it a cause of MS, only something that probably adds to the risk, IF you were predisposed already.
Where you live/grew up is also a factor: in general, MS is much more prevalent, the further you get from the equator. An obvious thing that decreases the further you move from the equator is sunlight - and hence, Vitamin D - produced mostly from sunlight. So the role of Vitamin D deficiency in the development and possible severity of MS is a hot research topic - it’s looking as if Vitamin D - or lack of it - certainly does play a part, although the exact mechanism isn’t yet understood.
There are also at least 40 known genes that are associated with an increased risk of MS. But of course, this is not a “lifestyle” factor, it’s luck-of-the-draw; you get what you get!
Having been lumbered with an unfortunate set of genes, and living in a largely grey country, in the Northern Hemisphere, are much more likely to have played a part than anything you actually DID.
NICE guidelines even say the patient is supposed to be told it’s not their fault, to stop this endless: “Oh God, what have I done to myself?” line of self-torment.
Tina and everyone else,
Thank you so much. I really loved all of your entries. It is true. And I have Catholic guilt anyway. I am not a Catholic but from the country that looks like a boot and went to a catholic school - so it is hidden deep in there somewhere. I am an atheisist but a guilty atheisist.
I actually grew up in the Southern Hemisphere, and was sun soaked every day of the year as we lived in the northern part of Australia.
So lots of Vitamin D - that is why I always seem to blame myself. I live in the grey city of London now. AHAHA Just as my pennance. hHAHAAH. I jest. I love London.
Thanks again for the reassurance. x