What Causes MS?

Multiple Sclerosis, or MS, is a chronic and progressive condition that affects the central nervous system. It causes the immune system to act on the material, called myelin, that covers the nerves and protects them. Damage to the myelin can lead to the nerves themselves being damaged, affecting the way a person’s body works.


 Home Care Services in Fairfax County VA: What Causes MS?

Home Care Services in Fairfax County VA: What Causes MS?


How someone with MS is affected by the disease depends on which nerves sustain damage. In one person, it could cause problems with the legs while another’s arms are affected. When someone becomes a caregiver to a person with MS, learning as much as they can about the disease can better prepare them for the job. One place to start in educating yourself about MS is to understand what may cause the disease.


Possible Causes of MS

To date, scientists still aren’t certain what exactly causes MS, though research is ongoing. They do know that it is an autoimmune disease since it makes the body’s immune system attack myelin. However, exactly what makes the immune system do this is still unknown.


Some of the possible causes that researchers are studying are:


-Immunologic Factors: Knowing that the disease is related to the immune system, researchers have been able to determine the immune cells that attack myelin, some of the reasons they attack, and what attracts them to myelin.

-Infectious Factors: One theory is that certain viruses or bacteria may be the cause of MS. Viruses can cause inflammation and affect myelin. Some of the viruses being investigated are the measles virus, the human herpes-virus-6, and the Epstein-Barr virus.

-Environmental Factors: MS occurs most often in locations that are far away from the equator. One of the interesting things that researchers have discovered about the environment is that when people live in an area with a higher risk for MS and then move to a lower risk area, they take on the lower risk of their new environment. Some researchers think the environmental risk may have something to do with vitamin D since those living closer to the equator get more of the vitamin because of sun exposure being greater near the equator.

-Genetic Factors: Having a close family member, such as a sibling or parent, with MS increases the risk for the disease. Therefore, scientists are looking into the possibility of genetics being a cause of MS.


Regardless of the cause of MS, it can be a very difficult disease for families to deal with. One way to make managing MS easier is to hire an elderly care provider. An elderly care provider can assist with things like dressing, eating, and moving around safely. Elderly care providers can also take on tasks that a person with MS is no longer able to do, such as cleaning the house, cooking, or washing clothes.


If you or an aging loved-one are considering Home Care Services in Fairfax County, VA, please contact the caring staff at LivinRite Home Care. Call Us Today at (703) 634-9991.