Shift workers suffer from increased risk of musculoskeletal disorders; healthcare workers are especially challenged in this area. Musculoskeletal pain can be caused by damage to muscles, tendons, ligaments, bones, joints, or nerves. The cause is usually an injury but sometimes the pain is chronic. If no injury has occurred or if hurt, achiness, or tenderness continues for more than a few days (without re-injury), then the feeling may be symptoms of something else.
In October of 2007, The American Society of Anesthesiologists released a report that stated approximately one in four patients who have chronic pain issues were also found to have low levels of Vitamin D. Vitamin D is liked to musculoskeletal pain by a lack of calcium resulting from a deficiency of Vitamin D. Calcium absorption is impeded without sufficient Vitamin D. A calcium deficiency can diminish bone density and it may affect bone structure (osteoporosis). Bone surfaces may also soften resulting in pain being generated in bone tissue.
Our bodies make Vitamin D when our skin is exposed to sunlight. You can also get some Vitamin D from fish and fortified foods like milk and breakfast cereal. Vitamin D supplements are generally safe to take as long as you speak with your healthcare provider first.
Vitamin D Deficiency Linked to Multiple Sclerosis
Researchers have found evidence of a direct connection between Vitamin D deficiency and the risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS). The research suggests that vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy and early childhood may increase the risk of a child developing MS later in life. The study also points to a genetic vulnerability to MS. MS is the most common disabling neurological condition affecting young adults. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, “there are approximately 250,000 to 350,000 people in the United States with MS diagnosed by a physician. This estimate suggests that approximately 200 new cases are diagnosed each week.” It is thought that approximately 2.5 million have MS worldwide.
MS is a nerve disorder affecting , balance, strength, sensation, coordination, and bodily functions. Symptoms occur when the brain and spinal cord nerves no longer communicate properly with other parts of the body. Most people have their first symptoms between the ages of 15 and 40 (symptoms rarely begin before 15 or after 60). Women are almost twice as likely to get multiple sclerosis as men. MS rates are higher in the United States, Canada, and Northern Europe than in other parts of the world. MS is extremely rare among Asians, North and South American Indians, and Eskimos.
Although the causes of MS are unclear, experts believe both environmental and genetic factors play a role. Earlier studies have shown that populations from northern Europe are more at risk of MS; those who live in areas with little sunshine. This could be explained by the link of MS with vitamin D deficiency.
The researchers suggest that as a precaution, mothers should take vitamin D supplements during pregnancy, or give them to their young children. Sensible sun exposure (or UVB radiation) and/or supplements are required to satisfy the body's vitamin D requirement – at all ages.
 Ramagopalan et al. Expression of the Multiple Sclerosis-Associated MHC Class II Allele HLA-DRB1*1501 Is Regulated by Vitamin D. PLoS Genetics, 2009; 5 (2): e1000369 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1000369
By Circadian Age, Inc.
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