Angela Scarrott, aged 55, was diagnosed with Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis last summer, just days before having a cancerous kidney removed.
I originally came to the Merlin MS Centre because hyperbaric oxygen therapy had been recommended by a friend, so we decided to give it a try. The induction with Ash introduced the physiotherapy available and we followed that up too.
The HBO saturation routine of coming to Hewas Water has returned welcome stability to yet another life turned on its head by MS. HBO has made a difference; increasing stamina, delaying the onset of fatigue and reducing some of the unkind symptoms of bladder and bowel, as well as making me feel chirpier overall. I now come in once a week for a top-up of HBO, which seems to be enough, followed by a session of physiotherapy in the gym.
Mel has designed a string of exercises to help stabilise my balance, enhance my muscle strength and suppleness and build towards greater endurance, all of which help me feel better!
My understanding of it is that where message pathways no longer work, we are trying to help the brain learn that other messages it is receiving are saying the same thing – a sort of DIY rewire of that which is left.
Fascinating to be in the middle of and it is making a difference – I recovered before falling last week because I could tell I was toppling and react in time!
After a cycle warm up, we are doing a lot of slow, steady work: leaning, rocking and stepping in all directions, while maintaining posture, so the brain gets used to which signal now means which motion – working on a soft beam along the floor certainly
heightens the concentration.
Mel has also put me on a trampette!
I haven’t managed to have both feet off the floor at the same time on purpose for years! Only very gentle little bounces, marching, or trotting, but it has me laughing out loud with the joy of it.
So good for the spirit, as well as the balance training. We also practice some complex changes of held balance which are strengthening my feet and legs too.
Physiotherapy helps me feel more in control of what is happening to me; it is rebuilding my confidence in balance and steadiness of foot.
Mel and Ash have helped me find some room and the courage to take a deep breath and help myself get better; to be as well as I can.
Mel has set a first target of an hours cliff walk with my husband – we mountain-walked before, but to now be able to aim for a simple cliff walk is a mountain enough and we shall go for that walk this spring.