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Uhthoff's phenomenon!

I was just wanting to ask you all a couple of questions about heat affecting your symptoms.

I have MS as does my father. I was visiting him yesterday and he was nearly off his feet. Very very bad and I thought he was going to fall a couple of times. He does use a stick but think he could have been doing with a wheelchair yesterday.

Anyway I know to avoid heat as it maes my arms and legs like jelly. I was talking to him about when he had gotten worse and he said he hit the floor as he was getting out of the shower. I ased him if he had it hot and he yes, “god yes”. So this lead to me telling him that we are not meant to get overheated and that I can not use a bath anymore etc etc.

He is the type of person who doesn’t want to now too much about MS as it scares him but I think when it is something that could help he needs to listen.

So what I want to know is…with me after a shower I do get increased symptoms, jelly legs and arms but it only lasts maybe an hour or so. Could the heat from the shower have really knocked him for six for the whole day? I have not been talking to him today so don’t know if he is feeling better or not.

Even during our visit we sat in the garden in the sun. As we sat there and I got hot I could feel my bad arm and leg just getting weaer and weaker and the buzzing still hasn’t stopped. I also twitched all night and now have an awful tremor in my arm

Thanks in advance, Lindsay x

Hello Linsay,

I wouldn’t be at all surprised if your dad still felt knocked for six, even after all those hours went by. I always feel as if only a night’s full sleep can right my limbs, and even then not always. It is just one of those weird and wonderful points of MS. The only plus point about it is that at least it does go.

Take care,

Moira

I think it is the humidity more than the heat that is affecting both of you and a shower will be touching 100%. I can cope with dry heat if it has increased nicely. The humidity has heightened symptoms badly for three weeks now. I have three dehumidifiers running constantly in my flat but it still gets to 40% and hurts me.

Try opening all the windows in the bathroom whilst showering and then you can scare the neighbours when you’ve finished.My flat is tiny,but you could try a dehumidifier in the favourite room. It will produce heat,but a cunningly placed fan can be used periodically to blow the warm air out of the door,then shut the door and start again,You should get both of these for £60-£70 with a bit of shopping around, and some of the digital weather stations have a humidity meter built in to them.

Wb

Hi Linsey,

See http://www.mult-sclerosis.org/Uhthoffssymptom.html

George

l hate baths - feel so grotty afterwards - and its such a struggle to get out of one anyway. Love my shower - but l do finish off with a ‘nearly’ cold rinse. This leaves me so invigorated. Just turn the dial from the hot setting slowly down to cold - giving your body time to adjust. lts supposed to be good for muscle tone to bathe in ice - l know footballers and athletes do this to repair damage done when training.

F.

hi lindsay

i fell getting out of the bath very soon after my dx.

as i fell i burst through the door into the room where my son (then19 yrs old) was playing on the computer.

bless him, he ran and got towels to cover me up and then helped me up.

my OT told me to stop having baths. i didnt feel secure in the shower so she got me some handrails fitted.

like campion, i turn the temperature down slowly at the end of my shower.

if your dad is as stubborn as mine, you may have a problem convincing him.

pass on the fact that cooler shower is good for muscles (again as campion said), he might want to show that he is as tough as those footballers!

carole x

hi lindsay

i fell getting out of the bath very soon after my dx.

as i fell i burst through the door into the room where my son (then19 yrs old) was playing on the computer.

bless him, he ran and got towels to cover me up and then helped me up.

my OT told me to stop having baths. i didnt feel secure in the shower so she got me some handrails fitted.

like campion, i turn the temperature down slowly at the end of my shower.

if your dad is as stubborn as mine, you may have a problem convincing him.

pass on the fact that cooler shower is good for muscles (again as campion said), he might want to show that he is as tough as those footballers!

carole x

Hi Lindsay,

I don’t take baths any more - I can’t get out of them. I have a shower, but find it difficult to step out over the bath safely, so occupational health have given me rails and a bathboard to help - the bathboard is particularly useful (it’s a slatted plastic board that sits on top of the edges of the bath) - I can sit down on it if I need to during my shower, and I sit on it to swing my legs out over the bath to get out. Much safer than stepping over the bath.

I do find hot and humid days much more draining than dry heat - it’ll be the same thing.

Luisa x

Thanks everyone. I do not bath anymore as I know I end up needing help to get out of it. Thats one thing I really miss as I loved my HOT HOT baths

We have no shower in this house so I struggle with this on a daily basis. Our bathroom is a single skinned extension off the kitchen and can be a tad draughty. Can’t leave the kitchen door open for obvious reasons!! I’ve given up having deep baths but the water in them needs to be relatively hot to start off with as it cools so quickly. I use a shower attachment to wash my hair. I often find I have to let the water out before I can move. When I do get up I use the towel rail on the back of the bathroom door (yes its a tiny bathroom too) to help haul myself out. Only today I was wishing I still lived in a house with the bedroom and bathroom on hte same level so I could haul myself out, crawl to the bed and then lay there and wait out the worst of the symptoms.