Skip to content

Best Shoes for Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

Seeking Comfort for your MS.

White Adaptive Sneaker

'These have made such a difference to my walking.'

Nicole P.

Cadense Ambassador, MS Community

'Thanks to Cadense I have been able to improve how I move my leg.'

Rhonda

Customer, MS Community

'These shoes make my life a lot easier.'

Chad

Customer, MS Community

ionicons-v5-c
ionicons-v5-c
Rhonda, Cadense Community Member
ionicons-v5-c
Gentlemen is holding an adaptive shoe

'These have made such a difference to my walking.'

'Thanks to Cadense I have been able to improve how I move my leg.'

'These shoes make my life a lot easier.'

Rhonda, Cadense Community Member
Gentlemen is holding an adaptive shoe
Gentlemen is holding an adaptive shoe
Rhonda, Cadense Community Member
Abstract image of a neural network

WHAT IS MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS

Multiple sclerosis is an inflammatory autoimmune disease that affects the brain, spinal cord, and central nervous system. 

Your nerve fibers are covered with protective sheaths known as “myelin.” Mayo Clinic explains that in patients with MS, the immune system damages the myelin sheaths around the nerves. The fibers themselves may degrade as a result, and the brain and body may struggle to communicate.

Watch a detailed Cadense review by Dr. Gretchen Hawley

Symptoms of multiple sclerosis

As MS attacks the central nervous system and brain, symptoms can be widespread and varied, even from one patient to another. 

Numbness

This journal article in Temperature explains that numbness, pain, tingling and “altered sensations” affect around half of patients with MS. Around 65% report these symptoms in their head, back, and/or extremities, including the feet. 

Such symptoms may contribute to difficulties walking, which this article states affect around 75% of MS patients. Up to 50% may sustain injuries related to falls.

Fatigue

A journal article in Sleep explains that at least 75% of patients with MS report fatigue at one point or another. For many patients with MS, it is difficult to keep up with necessary life activities due to the overwhelming fatigue.

Mood changes

MS can result in challenging mood changes in patients. Researchers believe that while 10-15% of the general population is at a lifetime risk for depression, for MS patients, that risk is around 50%.

It is not surprising that a condition that can be as debilitating as MS is for many patients would lead to a dampened mood. Not only can the symptoms themselves be emotionally and psychologically taxing, but they may make it hard to do activities such as exercise that might otherwise help mitigate those symptoms.

Numbness

This journal article in Temperature explains that numbness, pain, tingling and “altered sensations” affect around half of patients with MS. Around 65% report these symptoms in their head, back, and/or extremities, including the feet. 

Such symptoms may contribute to difficulties walking, which this article states affect around 75% of MS patients. Up to 50% may sustain injuries related to falls.

men's and women's adaptive shoes

Try Cadense Adaptive Shoes for Multiple Sclerosis

Shop Shoes

Causes of multiple sclerosis

Researchers are unsure what causes MS. There may be a genetic component, in conjunction with environmental triggers, that leads to MS. Below are some potential factors according to the National MS Society that could contribute to MS. The condition can often be worsened by lifestyle.

Smoking

The National MS Society reports that smoking increases the likelihood of developing MS. It can also increase the rate at which MS progresses, and the likelihood it will be severe. On the other hand, stopping smoking may help to slow progression down, even if you already have MS.

Vitamin D deficiency

Inadequate vitamin D can increase the chances of getting MS. As sunlight is our main source of vitamin D, those who live in areas that are frequently overcast have a stronger chance of being deficient in vitamin D.

Childhood obesity

Researchers have found that those who were obese during childhood, adolescence, or early adulthood may have a heightened risk for MS. This link is particularly pronounced with girls.

Exposure to certain viruses

MS is not an infectious disease. Viruses do not transmit it. Being infected with certain viruses could be one of the triggers for activating the disease in some individuals, however. Some potential culprits include the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), measles, Chlamydia pneumonia and others.

Treatments for MS

Now that you understand more about the risk factors for MS, we can move on to discussing treatment and management of this disease. 

Is MS curable?

Unfortunately, researchers have not discovered a cure for MS. The only option is to treat and manage the disease.

How is multiple sclerosis treated?

According to Mayo Clinic, doctors may attempt to modify the progression of MS by prescribing injectable treatments, oral medications, or infusions. For patients experiencing attacks, corticosteroids or plasma exchange may be used. 

Patients can also treat the symptoms of MS using physical therapy along with a variety of medications. 

Young woman looking into the distance

Outlook for multiple sclerosis

Life expectancy

The median age of survival for MS patients was 76 years, compared to 83 years for the general population. The researchers found that patients with MS were living longer compared to those in the previous 25 years. So, it is possible to live a long life with MS.

Two people sitting on a couch being happy

Can someone with MS live a normal life?

NHS states that a lot of people who have MS are able to remain active and healthy throughout their lives. WebMD states that periods of remission can sometimes last for months.

The right treatments combined with a healthy lifestyle can help patients enjoy more and longer periods of remission and more “normal” lives.

Prevention for multiple sclerosis

Following are some lifestyle changes you can make that can help you spend more time in remission from MS or manage your symptoms.

Woman lighting a cigarette

Quit smoking

Remember, smoking cigarettes is associated with worsened MS symptoms. Since quitting can lead to improvements in MS and prevent other health issues, it is recommended to consider stopping smoking.

Regular Exercise

Exercising can help people with MS to increase mobility and strength, while decreasing fatigue, bladder issues, and bowel problems. That said, WebMD recommends avoiding weather that is very hot, cold or humid.

Woman walking in pink adaptive shoes outdoors

Wear Proper Footwear

Research shows that wearing appropriate footwear can help improve balance in people walking with MS. That can lead to fewer slips, trips and falls, and a reduction in related injuries.

Features of MS footwear

To choose the right footwear for walking comfortably and safely with MS, it is important to know what to look for in a shoe.

Lightweight

As we discussed in the section on symptoms, fatigue is among the most debilitating symptoms of MS for many patients. A lightweight shoe can minimize fatigue while you are walking, allowing you to get more exercise.

Sole Size Based on Needs

The Multiple Sclerosis Foundation writes that feet and ankles can sometimes swell with MS.

For this reason, patients with MS may sometimes need to buy multiple shoe sizes so that they have what they need depending on the day and the circumstances for a comfortable fit.

Flexible Laces

You need to be able to lace up your shoes so that they are snug, but not cutting off your circulation. Since swelling may affect your foot size from day to day, you need your laces to be flexible.

Try on Multiple Pairs of Shoes

You may need to test out multiple pairs of shoes to find the ideal fit and features for your individual needs, since MS is such a varied condition. 

Consider the Cadense Original Adaptive Shoes for men and women, which feature patented variable friction technology to “glide” over uneven surfaces. These shoes can help you maintain a natural gait and keep your balance as you walk.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Have MS for Years Without Knowing?

Yes. Even when symptoms are present, it can be challenging to diagnose MS correctly, which can lead to years of uncertainty for those in search of answers.

What diseases are misdiagnosed as MS?

Some of the many conditions that can be misdiagnosed as MS include fibromyalgia, migraine, cerebral small vessel disease, functional neurological disorders, neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders, infectious diseases, inflammatory conditions, and metabolic conditions.

How quickly does MS progress?

How quickly MS progresses depends on the type you have. NHS says 8-9 out of 10 patients have relapsing remitting MS, featuring relapses and remissions. 2 out of 3 of those patients will eventually develop a progressive type called secondary progressive MS. It can take years, or even decades, for that transformation to occur.

Patients who do not initially develop relapsing remitting MS have primary progressive MS. This type immediately begins progressing after symptoms begin.

What kind of diet is recommended for MS patients?

No particular diet has been proven effective for managing MS. Aim to eat a healthy, balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy meat and fats. Do not eat too many sugars or processed foods.

Why are adaptive shoes important for MS sufferers?

Adaptive shoes can help MS patients to maintain their balance while moving over obstacles, reducing the chances of falls and injuries.

What does spasticity feel like in multiple sclerosis?

Spasticity in multiple sclerosis (MS) is a common symptom that can significantly affect a person's quality of life. It is characterized by muscle stiffness and involuntary muscle spasms.

What age does MS usually start?

The majority of people are diagnosed with MS between the ages of 20 and 40. This is the peak period when symptoms typically first appear. Early and accurate diagnosis is crucial for managing MS effectively. This often involves neurological exams, MRI scans, lumbar punctures, and blood tests to rule out other conditions.

Shopping Cart