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Sunday, June 28, 2015
MS and Heat Sensitivity: I Thought I Knew What to Do
TREVIS now knows "HEAT"
Published Jun 26, 2015
It’s always nice to come home after being away for a few weeks. It was particularly pleasant to return home to an 85°F temperature change.
On a recent leg of my book release tour, the hottest day while I was in South Carolina was 103°F with humidity closer than a hoarder’s cupboard. By the end of nearly two weeks in the South, mymultiple sclerosis and I now fully understand what heat can do to us.
I’ve gone on about MS and heat sensitivity and thought that I had a good plan. My plan went out the window when air-conditioning in a car in which I was riding couldn’t keep up with the heat during a seven-hour drive. I arrived in South Carolina from Florida with muscle rigidity in my left arm, a stammer in my speech, and a droop on the left side of my face, and my left leg and foot were worthless to me.
For seven days the temps spiked to above 100°F. The pool of the rental house never dropped below body temperature, and palmetto palms are beautiful but offer little shade.
Cool – cum cold – showers were required at least (and usually more than) three times each day. Mid-afternoon naps became mid-morning, mid-day, and mid-afternoon rests under whirling ceiling fans blowing the air conditioning down on my body.
I don’t know how our brothers and sisters of the hotter climates handle such intense heat coupled with hair-curling, mind-numbing humidity.
I will say that even though I had some new muscle stiffness due to the heat-induced pseudo-exacerbation, the heat did seem to soothe the pain normally associated with such rigidity.
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