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There's some good evidence for symptom relief using cryotherapy (i.e. cold) and pretreatment of heat-induced symptoms with the same (Pubmed 'cryotherapy multiple sclerosis'), and there's some good work on the (auto)immunological effects of cryotherapy.

People have 'taken the waters' in Brighton, UK (where I live) for several hundred years, and some (if not all) of the perceived beneficial effects of this may relate to cold water immersion - a cheaper version of a cryochamber.

So, as an ex-triathlete, now with MS and mainly heat-related leg symptoms, I thought I'd take up sea swimming again - and guess what? Major symptomatic relief for at least half a day afterwards. The water's about 17C at the moment which is absolutely fine, but will dip down below 8C in March and so I'm preparing by taking 8-10 minute cold water baths (with a bit of Wim Hof method thrown in) when the sea's too rough, and which has a similar symptom-relieving effect. A cold bath before gym weights extends the session too.

There's more research to be done here + fortunately, I work with a colleague who's an expert in temperature physiology ... will keep you posted!

Has anyone else experienced similar benefits from sea swimming/cold water immersion? Is this something that should be looked at within step 3 (exercise) perhaps? Anyone interested in getting involved in some research?
Before my symptoms presented and I was diagnosed, I swam 3x a week as my normal workout. In a gym pool, relatively cool, but not open water cold. At first, I stopped my workout regimen during the early stages of "wtf?" as I began experiencing symptoms, but soon resumed swimming and even amped up my swim workouts after diagnosis. I did feel "better" for several hours after the workouts, and perceived slight general improvements in the weeks where I was regularly swimming vs the weeks where I was off my routine. Psychosomatic? Maybe. But as the temps started to rise in the summer, I noticed certain symptoms acting up. Particularly cognitive ones. I read about cold-water immersion treatments and started taking cold showers before bedtime. It wasn't until a two-day trip to the beach and lots of ocean swimming that I realized my earlier benefits from my swim workouts may not have been only from the physical activity, but from spending an hour in the cold water. So now I'm interested to start doing more. At first I hated taking cold showers, but now I kind of crave them, I feel so good afterwards.
Wow..., my good experiences of lap swimming in an Olympic sized pool are verified after all these years. I thought that I alone had stumbled upon something that REALLY makes me feel good for the rest of the day. The pool I swim is kept cold for competition, but not nearly as cold as some of the other posts. That doesn't matter though because It makes me feel really good. I'm in the pool for at least 20 minutes every day and have been doing this for most of my life. Thanks for confirming my suspicions that cold/cool water is good for ME by lowering the body temperature...
There's a good review about the benefits of aquatic training in MS here: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articl ... /26339680/

Glad to here it helps!

Hi all,
Quick question - I decided to give cold water sea swimming a go last Sunday having read about the possible benefits. It was a balmy 8.4°C and I was in for an eternity (probably 5-10 min) . I felt great afterwards, however today I've got pins and needles in my arms and legs (notably worse than it's been for a while). I was since reading about cold water immersion/sea swimming, and one of the reported benefits is 'building and maintaining the immune system' due to the body perceiving a threat and increasing the number of white blood cells etc. in response.
I know that, with ms, symptoms come and go and don't want to jump to conclusions, but does anyone have any thoughts on benefits v drawbacks of cold water swimming? I know I read somewhere that it was best to avoid echinacea because it ramps up the immune system and was wondering if this might fall into the same category.
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