Can You Give Me Some Tips for Living with ALS?

Q:
Can you give me some tips for living with ALS?

A:
Here are some tips for families facing ALS:

  • Stay social. Staying connected is key to remaining positive making the best of each day.
  • Get a handicapped sticker for your car. Check with your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles to check the requirements for a disability placard for your car. If your resources allow, consider purchasing a handicap-accessible van.
  • Anticipate needs — as best you can. ALS progresses differently in each person. Start shopping for a walker, getting fitted for a wheelchair and arranging for other assistance sooner than later, before it becomes a crisis.
  • Go to physical and occupational therapy to help maintain strength and flexibility.
  • Find caregiver relief. If you can’t afford to hire a caregiver, see if neighbors or members of your faith community can pitch in. There may also be free community resources available to you; talk your doctor or one of the hospital’s social workers.
  • Consider therapy and antidepressants. ALS can take its toll on the patient and their caregivers, and both are at significant risk for depression.
  • Live in the moment. You need to stay focused on what you can do right now and try not to think about what is going to happen next.

Keyword: living als

* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.