**I have a quick question for our forum friends in the MIddle East or other geographical locations that are in year-round hot climates or anyone that has ideas about managing symptoms in such an environment.***
We are all aware that MSers have heat intolerance to some degree or another.
What I am wondering is for those of you who live in hot climates year-round or many months on end, how do you manage your MS on a daily basis with regards to hot temperatures?
What suggestions have you been given by your medical tema to help with heat intolerance?
How much of an impact does having MS and dealing with a hot climate have on your quality of life?
Do you think your overall health, not just MS, is worse off because of living in a hot climate?
I would be very interested in hearing your feedback as this information is not something we can just pick up a book and read about. I truly appreciate your responses.
I would like to include the people that live in the hot South and Southwest of this country. How do you handle the days over 90 with MS or the heat intolerance of suspect of MS?
I myself used to live in Yuma, Arizona (when I practiced in the Indian Helath Service) where the highs are over 110 degrees F for about 4 months of the year. People do very well in that kind of heat, especially older people with arthritis. Now, I won't even consider visiting my relatives in Tucson, Phoenix, or Albuquerque. They'll have to come to me.
Now, I can't imagine living anywhere but here, the Pacific Northwest, where both the winters and the summers are mild with the occasional blip. Though right now we are in about the 7th day of 50 to 75 mph sustained winds with gusts well into the 90's. But the temp is mild and the days are clear. Other than falling over in the wind, I don't mind being out, lol.
I have lived in Middle East and in Arizona. I actually found that I had very few problems in the Middle East. I actually took the job offer in the Middle East because I wanted to see how I did in the dry heat. Just about everything was air conditioned. Air conditioning is the key. The dry heat and air conditioning were key. Then I took a job transfer to Germany and all hell broke loose. In hindisight, nothing was air conditioned. I was constantly overheating and that's when I had my first time of not being able to walk/use my legs for a week. I also had nightmare experience trying to get on and off public transportation because I couldn't feel my legs/feet. In Arizona I am ok. I stay in the air conditioning. And the parks and rec pool that I go to is covered. Air conditioning is key. The heat and humidity on the East Coast is a nightmare for me. As are the cold, icey, snowy winters.
Air conditioning is key! I live in Texas where it can get pretty hot as well. I stayed with my father in Italy, and he had no air conditioning. I did get overheated big time and never cooled and wound up in the emergency care center with IV fluids, then I cooled. If you're going to be out in the heat, you just can't move around much (if any).
That's when I got into a heap of trouble-- when I rushed to get on a bus that was going to leave without me. When I boarded the bus, there was air conditioning, but it was too late, I couldn't cool my body temperature enough. I poured water on me, drank cool liquids, but nothing helped. I eventually collapsed a couple of hours later, and really caused a commotion (boy do I hate attention to myself).
I was fine after that--I just really had to make sure I didn't move around much in the heat. I stayed in the shade and drank cool beverages and just didn't move until the temp dropped at night. In Texas, I never get out in a hot car (my car is kept in the garage) or walk out in the heat. In the air conditioning, I'm good, but I still drink lots of cold beverages and take it easy on hot days.
I live in Australia, thankfully not one of the hottest states but still way too hot for me from November to April, with a few hot weeks in the months either side. Average temps during summer are mid to high 30s, with the last week sitting in the low to mid 40's. Last night was horrid still 37 degrees at midnight, its doubtful if anyone in the whole country got any sleep. Sorry cant really tell you in Farnheit (sp?) but i think when it gets to mid 30's in degrees its in the low hundreds in farenheit, correct me if i'm wrong.
It gets so hot the rail lines buckle, roads melt and people die, stupid parents still leave their children in cars where the temps reach into the 60's in minutes, dumb. People with MS get rebates or free airconditioning here, legislation is going before the senate to include people over 75 to also get free or heavily rebated airconditioning in an attempt to help with heat related deaths.
I dont think living with heat makes people any wiser but we tend to cope by moaning together, if you just have to go out we tend to hop from one shady patch to the next, drink chilled water, seek refuge from any place with airconditioning which happens to be just about anywhere now. We had evaporative cooling put in over 10 years ago, not a good thing for me any more, too many hot hot days brings the humidity up in the house and i wilt, move like i'm 90 years old and feel like doggy do do.
How do i cope, well i sort of dont have a choice but to get through it as best i can, some days are better than others but mostly i'm hurting, wobbling, sleeping and ignoring the areas of tingle, shivers, numb spots and the annoyingly stupid stinging of my left ear. I've found that i need to keep stepping in cold water to bring my temp down, i cant feel my feet much and they go purple even in the heat but if i'm starting to feel too hot cooling my feet helps a lot. I also wear iced head bands, i have a spray pump i fill with icy water, i also find if i run my arms under cold water i cool down quicker, dont know why but i do.
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