Motor neurone disease is a rare condition that progressively damages parts of the nervous system. This leads to muscle weakness, often with visible wasting.
Motor neurone disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), occurs when specialist nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord called motor neurons stop working properly.
This is known as neurodegeneration.
Motor neurons control important muscle activity, such as:
As the condition progresses, people with motor neurone disease will find some or all of these activities increasingly difficult. Eventually, they may become impossible.
It’s not clear what causes motor neurons to stop working properly. In about 5% of cases there’s a family history of either motor neurone disease or a related condition called frontotemporal dementia. This is known as familial motor neurone disease. In most of these cases, faulty genes have been identified as making a major contribution to the development of the condition.
There’s no single test to diagnose motor neurone disease and diagnosis is based mainly on the opinion of a brain and nervous system specialist (a neurologist). The diagnosis of motor neurone disease is usually clear to an experienced neurologist, but sometimes specialised tests are needed to rule out other conditions with similar features.
The initial symptoms of motor neurone disease often affect certain areas of the body before eventually becoming more widespread.
It’s important to visit your GP as soon as possible if you have the typical early symptoms of motor neurone disease. There’s evidence that specialist care can improve overall survival.
The symptoms usually follow a pattern that falls into three stages:
-the initial stage
-the advanced stage
-the end stage
The initial symptoms of motor neurone disease usually develop slowly and subtly over time. It can be easy to mistake early symptoms for those of several unrelated conditions that affect the nervous system.
In about two-thirds of people with motor neurone disease, the first symptoms occur in the arm or leg. This is sometimes called limb-onset disease. These symptoms include:
-a weakened grip, which can cause difficulties picking up or holding objects
-weakness at the shoulder, making lifting the arm above the head difficult
-tripping up over a foot because of weakness at the ankle or hip
These symptoms are usually painless and may be accompanied by widespread twitching of the muscles (fasciculations) or muscle cramps, and there may be visible wasting of the muscles with significant weight loss.
In a quarter of cases, problems initially affect the muscles used for speech and swallowing. Increasingly slurred speech (dysarthria) is usually the first sign of this type of motor neurone disease and may be misdiagnosed as a stroke.
As the condition progresses, it may become increasingly difficult to swallow (dysphagia), and be misdiagnosed as a blockage in the throat.
In extremely rare cases, motor neurone disease starts by affecting the lungs, rather than affecting them at the end of the condition. This is called respiratory-onset disease.
In some cases, the initial symptoms are obvious, such as breathing difficulties and shortness of breath.
In other cases, the symptoms are less noticeable, such as waking up frequently during the night because the brain is temporarily starved of oxygen when lying down. This can make the person feel very tired and unrefreshed the next morning, sometimes with a headache.
As the disease becomes more advanced, the differences between the various types of disease are less noticeable as more parts and functions of the body are affected. The rate at which the condition spreads varies, but generally remains the same for an individual (that is, it doesn’t speed up, but doesn’t slow down either).
The limbs become gradually weaker and the muscles in the limbs may appear progressively wasted. As a result, the person will find it increasingly difficult to move the affected limbs.
The muscles may also become stiff. This is known as spasticity. Both muscle wasting and stiffness can also cause joint aches and pains.
Speaking and swallowing difficulties
At least two-thirds of people with motor neurone disease find that speaking and swallowing become increasingly difficult as the condition progresses. However, although choking episodes can be distressing they aren’t the cause of death.
Reduced swallowing can cause an excess of saliva, sometimes drooling. Thicker saliva may sometimes be difficult to clear from the chest or throat due to the weakening of the muscles that control coughing.
Some people with the disease have episodes of uncontrollable, excessive yawning, even when they’re not tired. This can sometimes cause jaw pain.
Motor neurone disease can lead to changes in a person’s ability to control their emotions, particularly when there’s weakness in the muscles that control speech and swallowing.
Apply the following:
Nerve Restore 30ml, 15 drops over the spine, at night
Spinal Therapy 100ml, 20-30 drops, over the spine, morning and night
Sore Muscles and Massage 100ml over stiff muscles, if and when needed
When applying more than one oil blend to the same area, do so over the course of the day, or wait 10 minutes in between.
If you have to ingest more than one capsule a day, drink them over the course of the day, never more than two capsules at a time. Spreading the capsules throughout the day assists the body with proper absorption. Always good to have a very small snack/fruit before drinking capsules.
Diffuse (see below) during the night, for 8 hours, while sleeping:
Trauma Blend (for diffuser), 3 drops
Memory Blend, 3 drops
Diffuse during the day, while working/studying:
Brain Blend, 5 drops
Oil Pulling Method
Swish 1 Tablespoon, daily, for about 5 minutes (gradually work up to 10 or 20 minutes). Don’t do it vigorously since you’ll be doing it for far longer than you are used to and your jaw will get tired. Gently swirl the oil around your mouth and suck it through the spaces between your teeth. Make sure not to swallow any of it. When finished, spit the oil in the dustbin. Don’t spit it in the sink because when the oil thickens after cooling, it may clog up your pipes.
Use for: Cleansing and detoxifying the mouth; assisting with the following: tooth decay; restoring tooth nerves, inflammation, heavy metal detoxing; brain fog and cleansing the blood.