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Ataxia UK
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Gym/Swim also Driving

Hi All, I was just wondering if anybody has any experiences or general advice about how using a gym and swimming at early stages may or may not help with any aspects.

Also I would like to know if anybody has experienced any difficulty in driving, as im a coach and hgv driver im worried for the long term of me being not able to work.

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It is no problem at all. I use the gym 3 or 4 times a week, for at least 2 hours a time . I also run 5 k. 3 times a week. I was a self employed driving instructor for 34 years , which I have retired from only because of my slurred speech ( I can't say what I need to coherently enough) but absolutely no problem for personal driving, as time goes on you may experience double vision, this is dealt with easily.( close one eye ! )

All the best.

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P.S.

Keep yourself as fit both mentally and physically as possible, it will definitely help. I was diagnosed about eight years ago and I would guess that in that time I am about eight to ten percent worse ,as I am now 68 so I suppose I can live with that.

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I suffer from ataxia to the lower limbs.I find that exercise and aquatherapy greatly increase my mobility, confidence and mental health. The more I do the better I feel.

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Hi😊 If a Neurologist doesn't mention it, people often don't realise that it's a legal requirement to notify the DLA about a diagnosis of Ataxia. Although this doesn't necessarily mean driving has to cease.

After receiving information from the Neurologist, and any other Specialist being consulted, usually a 3yr licence is issued, to be reviewed.

Double vision can often be helped by prisms, Botox can also make a difference in some cases. If an Optician is unable to improve matters, they should refer patients to the nearest hospital Eye Department. I've had very good treatment from my local Eye Department, this involved trying a series of prisms, various types of contact lenses, Botox and finally surgery. But, I'm pleased to say it was all worth it🙂xB

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what are prisms? Thanks

N

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A prism is a wedge shaped piece of glass or plastic that bends the light that shines through it.

Special prisms called Fresnel (pronounced 'frennel') prisms are see through lens-shaped pieces of plastic that stick to glasses. One side has special grooves that change the way that light enters the eye, and corrects double vision.

These prisms are available in different strengths, it's usual to wear them for several months to determine whether the strength needs correcting. When vision is stable, a permanent glass prism can be built into glasses. 😊xB

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I exercise my arms and legs on a daily basis. Trying to make arms stronger so that I am able to get up after a fall. A friend who has had cerebellar ataxia from the effects of Agent Orange for years swims and snorkels on a daily basis. He is doing very well.

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