Ivy Palmer - Care Advice & News

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) – what are the symptoms?

What are the early warning signs of MS?

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) can cause a wide range of symptoms and can affect any part of the body. There’s no typical pattern that applies to everyone – each person with the condition is affected differently and people can have different symptoms at different times.

You shouldn’t assume the following symptoms are a sign of MS. Only a neurologist can diagnose MS. If you are concerned you or a loved one may be showing any of the following sysptoms then make an appointment with your GP. If they think your symptoms need further investigation, they’ll refer you to a specialist.

Symptoms are unpredictable. Some people’s symptoms develop and gradually become worse, whilst for others they come and go. Some of the most common symptoms include:


Extreme exhaustion is one of the most common symptoms of MS. People struggle to carry out even the simplest activities and tends to get worse towards the end of each day.


In approximately one in four cases, the first noticeable symptom is an eye problem. This could be:

  • Temporary loss of vision
  • Eye pain
  • Flashes of light when moving the eye
  • Double vision
  • Involuntary eye movement


Problems with walking and balance are a common sign. You may also experience:

  • Clumsiness
  • Balance and Co-ordination
  • Tremors in the limbs


Speech may also become difficult to understand, people tend to say their words are becoming ‘slurred’.

Pain and abnormal sensations

Some people may experience stabbing pains in the face together with pins and needles, burning or muscle spasms in their limbs, body or joints.

Bowel and bladder problems

Problems with their Bowel and bladder are a symptom of MS however these can be caused by other conditions and medications

Cognitive dysfunction

Some have problems with thinking, learning and planning. However these signs aren’t specific to MS and can be caused by other conditions

  • Remembering and learning new things
  • A shortened attention span
  • Understanding and processing visual information
  • Difficulty with planning and problem solving
  • Forgetting words


People may experience difficulty in chewing and swallowing their food.

Live-in Care and MS

If you or a loved one are diagnosed with MS, you may have to adapt your life but with the care and support of a MS Live-in Carer many people benefit enormously and can live independently – leading long, active and healthy lives.

As a physiotherapy-led organisation we care and support many people living with this condition. To arrange a no obligation FREE care assessment, please call or email: hello@iphomecare.co.uk