Multiple sclerosis symptoms managed by physiotherapy

Physiotherapy can help you manage symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis and live well – improving physical function, physical activity and quality of life.

What is multiple sclerosis (MS)?

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic neurological disease that affects the central nervous system in more than 25,000 Australians. It is 3 times more common in women than in men.

There is damage to the protective myelin sheath that surrounds the nerve fibres in the spinal cord and brain. This causes scars, or lesions and prevents the nerves from sending signals around the body properly.

The cause of MS is not known, but it is thought to be an autoimmune disease caused by genetic or environmental factors or that it is caused by a virus.

There is currently no known cure for MS and treatment often focuses on managing symptoms. Disease-modifying medicines can delay the progression of MS and reduce the risk of relapses.

What are the symptoms of multiple sclerosis?

Symptoms of MS are variable and unpredictable. Some people may experience only a few symptoms and others many more. Symptoms can change and get worse over time.

Most common symptoms:

  • muscle stiffness and spasms
  • muscle weakness, loss of coordination and balance
  • fatigue
  • vertigo and dizziness
  • numbness and tingling/pins and needles
  • neuralgia – sharp, shocking, stabbing, burning pain
  • vision problems
  • bladder incontinence and constipation
  • sexual problems
  • cognitive changes such as memory, concentration, processing
  • emotional changes such as anxiety, mood swings, irritability
  • depression

Controlling the symptoms of multiple sclerosis

Medicines are available that can relieve many of the symptoms of MS such as pain, muscle spasms, continence issues and depression.

Regular exercise and physical activity benefits anyone and can be especially helpful for people who wish to live well with multiple sclerosis.

Physiotherapy can maintain mobility, improve strength and function, and prevent symptoms from getting worse over time.

How to access physiotherapy

Physiotherapy can be funded by your NDIS plan using the support item, Capacity building – Improved daily living.

There is also the option to pay privately and receive a rebate from your private health insurer or up to 5 session per year from Medicare. We can talk you through the options that are right for you.

Benefits of physiotherapy for multiple sclerosis

Physiotherapy plays a key role in the management of MS symptoms and can be a great benefit for those with MS. Improving physical health and enhancing quality of life.

  • Managing symptoms such as stiffness, weakness, fatigue and pain
  • Improving muscle strength
  • Reducing spasticity and encourage more normal movement
  • Improving balance and mobility
  • Preventing falls
  • Keeping joints mobile and preventing stiffness
  • Improving functional abilities
  • Improving ability to transfer
  • Preventing muscle contractures
  • Maintaining and building exercise capacity at the right level
  • Maintaining independence in activities of daily living
  • Improving mood and emotions

Treatment strategies

  • Manual soft tissue therapy to reduce muscle tightness
  • Strengthening exercises to improve balance and functional ability
  • Exercises to build stamina and increase fitness
  • Acupuncture to reduce muscle spasms
  • Postural exercises to improve standing, walking and sitting posture
  • Core strengthening exercises
  • Static and dynamic balance training
  • Stretching exercises to relieve stiffness and spasm
  • Recommendation of aids to minimise injury and help with mobility and independence
  • Referral to other healthcare specialties

How can our physiotherapists help you live well with MS

Our physiotherapists have an in-depth understanding of Multiple Sclerosis as a condition and the symptoms that can present.  We understand that exercise capacity, ability, strength and function changes as the disease progresses.

We will work with you to understand what is important to you and what your goals are. Most importantly we will discuss how physiotherapy can best help you and also work with your healthcare team to help you achieve your goals.

Our physiotherapists will make recommendations to improve your mobility, strength and physical wellbeing. We will develop a treatment and exercise plan that meets your specific needs. Regular review, progressive treatment and updates to your plan are part of our commitment to your success. We will be there to continually support you to implement your plan and reach your goals and maintain independent living with confidence.

Working with you in your own home helps us identify your specific challenges and tailor your plan to best suit your needs.

Trust in our Numbers You Won’t be Disappointed

45 Years combined physiotherapy experience

5 Highly skilled, trusted, exceptional physiotherapist

18,138 Number of home visits

20 Years in South Sydney

5 Star Google rating