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Productive work is part of a satisfying lifeand MS does not spell the end of being productive. So the answer is yes. You should work.
The real question involves how, where, and at what level you will work. Your chapter of the National MS Society has information, referrals, and programs to help you find good answers.
symptoms are overwhelming! How can I work at all?
People with MS have a lifetime to live with a disease that may fluctuate unpredictably, produces different symptoms at different times, and is not inevitably disabling.
It takes time to discover how symptoms can be managed, and whether they will affect a current job or a planned career. If you are employed and need time to recover from a crisis, investigate sick leave policy, short-term disability insurance coverage, or the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which is leave without pay. When the crisis resolves, you can begin exploring your options. It is almost always easier to return to work than to find a new job.
other people with MS hold real jobs?
Today, disease-modifying drugs, new technology, better symptom management, and new public attitudes are changing life with MS.
recovered from my attack but I cant do things I used to be able
Call your National MS Society chapter. Ask for referrals to an occupational therapist, a career counselor, or your state vocational rehabilitation office. Your chapter also has information on the Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, and on accommodation strategies.
The ADA is a civil rights law for people with disabilities. It has several key provisions that may help with employment issues:
are some examples of reasonable accommodations?
isnt working too stressful?
People with MS often hear that they should stop working to control stress. Unemployment does not cure stress.
Having a chronic potentially
disabling disease like MS causes stress, but a direct cause and effect
relationship between stress and the onset or worsening of MS has not been
established despite many research studies.
Resources you may need
JAN (Job Accommodation
These Society publications may help:
Ask your chapter for these publications, referrals to counselors and therapists, your nearest vocational rehabilitation (VR) agency, and other resources. Also, ask if your chapter sponsors the Career Crossroads program. Call 1-800-FIGHT-MS (1-800-344-4867) to be connected to the nearest National MS Society office.
|Copyright © National Multiple Sclerosis Society, 2005|