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8 Strategies for Coping with MS Fatigue

By Lisa Marie Basile
Reviewed by Dana Cooper, M.D.
November 09, 2022

If you’re like an estimated 80% of people with multiple sclerosis (MS), fatigue may be a frequent struggle. This feeling of having little physical or mental energy can make it hard to take care of your home or family, prioritize self-care, or perform your job duties. In fact, fatigue is one of the main reasons some people with MS leave their jobs, according to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society (NMSS).

MS fatigue is more than just being tired—a feeling that can occur when you don’t get enough sleep or when you push yourself a little too hard during the week. Rather, fatigue is a severe, chronic, overwhelming sense of exhaustion that can dramatically impact daily life even when you’re well rested.

“It’s honestly one of the hardest symptoms for people without MS to understand. People will say, ‘Well, I’m tired too…’ but they don’t understand how fatigue differs,” says Andrew L. Smith, M.D., a board-certified neurologist at OhioHealth in Columbus.