Enduring Dysesthesia

What is Dysesthesia:

Dysesthesia is pain triggered by the central nervous system and is commonly associated with Multiple Sclerosis.

It can be an unpleasant abnormal sensation in which a sense, especially touch, is distorted. Dysesthesia can cause ordinary stimulus to be unpleasant and painful.

What Does Dysesthesia Pain Feel Like:

The pain can be described as a burning, prickling and aching feeling.
Dysesthesia pain can start in your legs or feet and can move to your arms causing a squeezing sensation around your chest which is called the “MS hug.”

The pain can be acute meaning it can come on suddenly and goes away suddenly.

It can also be chronic, lingering pain that can last for a long period of time. The pain can come out of nowhere and other times a sensation can change from normal to abnormal especially in the case of your clothing, which can feel like a very painful stimulus against your skin.


A sensation of your skin crawling

Aching or throbbing

Burning or stinging

Shooting, stabbing or tearing pain

Electrical shock like sensation


Doctors usually prescribe one or two medications that that work on your central nervous system.

Antidepressants can change how your body responds to pain where as anticonvulsants work to calm down overstimulated nerves.There are also pain relief creams such as lidocaine or capsaicin which can soothe the tingling and burning pain. You can also use over the counter medications such as Advil, Motrin or Excedrin. Warm or cold compresses or compression socks or gloves may also help manage your pain.

Alternative Treatments:

Chronic Pain is unfortunately part of having Dysesthesia so you may need to also incorporate alternative therapies, such as:







Stress management

Persistent Dysesthesia may result in complications including:

skin/scalp irritations





Unable to perform everyday tasks

Isolating yourself from family and friends


Dysesthesia can come and go without treatment so you should be vigilant in getting your MS managed to keep your dysesthesia more bearable.