Mum-of-two who ‘started going numb’ after second labour handed devastating MS diagnosis

A mum who’s body started “going numb” after the birth of her second child was handed a devastating multiple sclerosis (MS) diagnosis.

Jessica O’Hare had her second child in 2009 and soon after began suffering a number of symptoms including feeling numb.

She began to suffer fatigue and pins and needles but it was only when the numbness spread to both her arms and legs and lower torso that she went to her doctor in 2018.

The Mossley Hill, Liverpool resident was referred to a neurologist in 2018 and it was there she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, the Liverpool Echo reported.

The 40-year-old said the unexpected diagnosis hit her hard.

She carried on as normal for a few years, but then last year her mental health took a turn for the worse.

She suffered from depression and anxiety – even struggling to leave her house.

To try and manage her anxiety she took up yoga and running.

Her MS symptoms now include bad fatigue, restless leg syndrome and when she’s stressed or hot she gets pins and needles and a burning feeling in her feet.

Jessica is one of 130,000 people in the UK suffering from MS – a condition which can affect the brain and spinal cord, as well as damaging nerves in the body.

It can make it harder to do everyday things like walk, talk and eat.

Jessica found support for her condition through the MS Society’s ‘Living Well with MS’ online sessions.

She said: “When I found out about the Living Well sessions it came at the right time as I was worried I was going to exacerbate my MS through exercise.

“I joined the session as fatigue is my biggest issue and I wanted to know if I was doing too much.

“It was really helpful as you could ask questions before the session and interact with the other people with MS.

“It covered everything and others were able to help and offer tips.

“It came at the perfect time for me as I was starting to do more exercise to manage my stress and anxiety.

“I feel like I have a handle on other aspects of MS in my life and wanted to make sure I wasn’t overdoing it.”

Tracey Harrison from the MS Society runs the ‘Living Well with MS’ programme: “MS is relentless, painful and disabling. It’s an unpredictable condition and is different for everyone.”