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Mind and Emotions

Experts and people living with MS agree that there are many ways to compensate for mental symptoms. A sense of humor and a bit of patience were mentioned by everyone. These are not hopeless problems.

General Information
Cognitive Function: An overview
Emotional Aspects: An overview
Taming Stress in MS
"But You Look So Good!"
Coping with the invisible symptoms of MS


MS may affect:

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About 50% of people with MS will develop some cognitive dysfunction. In MS this generally means impaired ability to think, reason, concentrate, or remember. But only 10% of the group with cognitive dysfunction develop problems that are severe enough to interfere in a significant way with everyday activities.
GO More on MS and Cognition

In addition to physical symptoms, MS can have a profound effect on one's emotions. People can have painful feelings about the disease as well as mood changes caused by the disease.
GO More on the Emotional Aspects of MS

Common emotional reactions:
fear, denial, anger, grieving, depression, guilt

People with MS and all those closely associated with them should be aware that depression is common during the course of the disease.
Depression: An overview image

Depression and MS


Intimacy and Sexuality
Does MS affect sexuality? Everything connected to MS—from its physical symptoms to its emotional impact—can affect sexual expression. But this doesn’t mean that sexual problems can’t be managed successfully. People with MS can and do have fulfilling sex lives. Please consider these suggestions:

  • Work at sharing feelings honestly with your partner.
  • Be flexible about sexual expression.
  • Seek medical treatment for physical symptoms.
  • For nonphysical problems, consider consulting a psychotherapist or counselor who specializes in sex therapy
MS and Intimacy MS and Intimacy
Personal stories about dating, frank advice about communicating sexual needs and problems, descriptions of treatments and therapies, and a helpful list of resources


MS and the Mind


webcast icon Webcasts
(transcripts available)

MS Learn Online presents


Cognitive Dysfunction

NEW! Depression
Learn more about these and other webcasts


MS as a Spiritual Journey
Individuals grapple with the spiritual issues MS raises—while professionals study the effects of faith and personal philosophy on outcomes.

What research is doing about symptoms that can't be measured easily


Staying Relaxed

Many people with MS say they experience more symptoms during stressful times. Learn the link between stress and MS and the importance of relaxation

Relax Through Meditation and Visualization

Many people find that meditation greatly decreases the stress in their lives. Visualization is a combination of meditation, clearing your mind, and deep breathing. With visualization you do more than just see the scene. You move yourself—in your mind—into the picture.
Learn more about meditation, visualization, and relaxation

  Last updated August 16, 2007