Attached to the bones are about 700 muscles that make up about half a person’s body weight. Furthermore, muscles are very important in the mobility of a person. Actually, the main purpose of the muscular system or the muscles in particular is the movement. Muscles are the only body tissue that has the ability to bond, thus moving other parts of the body. Also, muscles are very important for the maintenance of the body position and posture. Truly, muscle is important, thus anything that causes the muscles to get weaker is a thing to be checked. One of the conditions that may cause the muscles to get weaker is the muscular dystrophy. This condition is a serious one, thus ignoring it is a no-no. Knowing the causes, symptoms, as well as the treatments for muscular dystrophy is necessary. Read on to know these things and more!
Muscular Dystrophy: What is this condition?
A muscular dystrophy is actually a group of illnesses that cause the muscles to get weaker and less flexible over time. Mainly, it is caused by a particular problem in the genes, which control the process on how the body keeps the muscle healthy. In some cases, the disease actually starts in the early childhood. On the other hand, others do not show any symptoms at all until they reach the teen age years or the middle-age adulthood.
How much the condition affects the patient actually depends on the kind of muscular dystrophy they have. Most of the people’s condition may get worse over time. Furthermore, some may also lose the ability care for themselves, talk, or even walk. However, this does not happen to everyone. Other people may live for many more years with just mild symptoms.
Moreover, there are actually more than 30kinds of muscular dystrophy, which all may vary in severity and symptoms.
Muscular Dystrophy: What causes it?
The muscular dystrophy may actually run in the family. Furthermore, you may also be the first one to have it. What causes the condition mainly are various problems in the genes. We know that genes are the ones that contain information the cells need in making proteins, which control the different functions in the body. Gene having a problem may cause in the production of wrong protein, a damaged one, or even a wrong amount of it.
Moreover, you may also acquire muscle dystrophy even though neither your parents has experienced the disease. It happens when a gene gets a certain blemish on its own. However, it is a rare case for someone to experience this. For some people who have muscular dystrophy, the broken genes are actually the ones that produce the proteins, which keep the muscles strong and healthy.
Muscular Dystrophy: Symptoms
For most of the types of muscular dystrophy, the symptoms may start to appear in the childhood phase or in the teenage years. Generally, children having this condition may experience:
- Waddle or walk on their toes
- Having a trouble jumping, running, climbing, or getting up
- Having muscle cramps
- Have weak muscles
- Falls down more often
Some may also experience symptoms like:
- Weakness in the facial muscles
- Vision problems
- Trouble swallowing or breathing
- Heart conditions
- Droopy eyelids
- Scoliosis or curved spine
Muscular Dystrophy: Risk Factors
The muscular dystrophy occurs in both sexes as well as in all races and ages. On the other hand however, the most common type of the condition, Duchenne commonly occurs in young boys. Furthermore, people with a family history of the muscular dystrophy are more at risk of developing the condition or pass it through their children.
Treatments for Muscular Dystrophy
Here are some of the most beneficial treatments for muscular dystrophy:
- Surgery: this is beneficial in treating different complications of the muscular dystrophy, like the heart problems or even the trouble in swallowing.
- Medicines: some certain medicines are beneficial in treating the condition or at least relieve various complications. Below are some of the most effective medicines or treatments for muscular dystrophy:
- Medicines for blood pressure
- Anti-seizure drugs or medicines
- Respiratory therapy: this is beneficial if your child has a trouble breathing. Furthermore, it helps in making the patient to breath much easier.
- Speech therapy: this is good for the patients, since tit will teach them various easier ways of talking if his face or even his throat muscles are weak.
- Occupational therapy: this helps the patient in understanding how to make the most of what his own muscles can do. Moreover, the therapist may also show the patient the way on using a particular thing, just like braces, wheelchairs, and some other devices, which may be beneficial for them in the day to day life.
- Physical therapy: the use of different exercises and stretches are beneficial in keeping the muscles much stronger and more flexible.