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March 2-8 is MS Awareness Week – a time to focus on multiple sclerosis and encourage those with a connection to the disease to get involved in the MS Movement. It’s estimated that everyone in Wisconsin knows someone with MS, as the state is believed to have one of the higher prevalence rates in the nation. More than 11,000 children, women and men here have been diagnosed.
MS is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that interrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. Symptoms range from numbness and tingling, to blindness, paralysis and cognitive difficulties. Most people are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50. Nearly 80 percent are women.
Every Connection Counts
There are some easy ways people can get involved to help those with multiple sclerosis during MS Awareness Week:
• Register to participate in Walk MS, which raises money for MS-related research, programs and services. There will be 20 Walk MS events throughout the state in April, May and September.
• “Make a Mark for MS” with Wisconsin’s tax check-off program, which allows everyone to donate to select causes directly through their state income tax form. Every dollar donated for multiple sclerosis stays in Wisconsin to help someone diagnosed with MS maintain their independence, and $75,000 must be raised in order to keep multiple sclerosis in the program next year.
• Visit MSconnection.org to connect with others living with MS, share your story and inspire others.
• Wear orange. Orange is the signature color for multiple sclerosis. Wear it, and let everyone know why.
About the National MS Society
The Society mobilizes people and resources to drive research for a cure and to address the challenges of everyone affected by MS. In 2014, the Society invested $50.6 million to advance more than 380 research projects around the world in order to stop MS in its tracks, restore what has been lost and end MS forever. Through its comprehensive nation-wide network of programs and services, it also helped more than one million people affected by MS connect to the people, information and resources needed to live their best lives.
Early and ongoing treatment with an FDA-approved therapy can make a difference for people with multiple sclerosis. Learn more by talking with a health care professional and contacting the National MS Society at nationalMSsociety.org or 1-800-FIGHT-MS (344-4867), or contact the Wisconsin Chapter directly at 262-369-4400.