Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Multiple Sclerosis Health Center

Font Size

5 Myths and Facts About Multiple Sclerosis

Myth: You shouldn't exercise if you have MS.

"Actually, you should exercise if you have MS," McCoyd says. Physical activity is good for your overall health and can help you manage MS symptoms.

Exercise improves strength, endurance, and balance. It also helps:

  • Mood
  • Thinking
  • Bowel function
  • Overall quality of life

But there are special considerations. "Becoming overheated while exercising can worsen symptoms of MS," says Daniel Bandari, MD. Bandari is the medical director of the Multiple Sclerosis Center of California and Research Group in Newport Beach, Calif.

Stay cool by taking frequent breaks. Try to exercise in the morning, when it's not too hot.

Your exercise program should be tailored to your abilities and limitations. It may need to be adjusted when your symptoms change. You can get help in putting together a routine from a physical therapist who has experience with MS patients.

Myth: You have to stop working if you have MS.

If you've just been diagnosed, don't jump to the conclusion that you should stop working. Well-meaning friends and family may suggest that you avoid the strains of work and stay home and rest. But there's no need to "make a career" of MS, Kalb says.

"People who quit work to avoid the stress quickly find that being unemployed brings its own set of stresses," she says. "And life without the stimulation of work and the relationships with fellow workers can feel very empty."

The fact is, most people retire with MS, not from it, McCoyd says.

Myth: MS is a deadly disease

The life expectancy of people with MS is very close to that of the general population, Kalb says. "Most people with MS die from cancer, heart disease, or stroke, just like everyone else."

In rare cases, patients with very severe disability may die prematurely of complications such as pneumonia. But you can prevent most complications by treating your MS symptoms and getting regular preventive health care.

"One other important risk factor for early death in MS is undiagnosed and untreated depression," she says, "which can lead to suicide."

If you have significant mood changes, talk to your doctor.

1 | 2
Reviewed on September 23, 2013

Today on WebMD

nerve damage
Learn how this disease affects the nervous system.
woman applying lotion
Ideas on how to boost your mood and self-esteem.
woman pondering
Get personalized treatment options.
man with hand over eye
Be on the lookout for these symptoms.
brain scan
worried woman
neural fiber
white blood cells
sunlight in hands
marijuana plant
muscle spasm