Jeffrey Gingold is the author of the book - Mental Sharpening Stones, Manage the Cognitive Challenges of Multiple Sclerosis. He was diagnosed with MS in 1996.
At the time, he was a successful lawyer who also taught law. He even enjoyed speed skating. He and his wife Terri, had a two year old and were expecting their second child, another daughter, that summer.
His life was perfect. He had everything he wanted. As a lawyer, mental sharpness could be considered as part of the job description. He had to think on his feet.
When he began experiencing bouts of mental blankness. He couldn't remember what to say next. They happened so often, that began effecting his performance. He eventually made the decision to retire from his job.
Jeffrey Gingold wasn't alone with this common symptom of MS. According to the MS Society, around 65 – 70% of MSers have cognitive dysfunction to some degree. And he was one of them.
Most neurologists focus on the physical symptoms of multiple sclerosis. They tend to neglect the cognitive issues that come along with MS. This may be partly because, many people with MS fail to realize that they have these problems.
In the 1970's, it was thought that MS did not even effect your mental abilities. Now doctor's know differently and patients are able to talk more about this issue with them.
If you have bouts of confusion, forgetfulness, or are finding it hard to concentrate, then most likely you have cognitive issues.
Because this was what caused Jeffrey to have to retire, he decided to bring it to the forefront. It was a major issue receiving minor attention.
This is where Mental Sharpening Stones came in. He gives Mser tools to deal with this sometimes frustrating issue. You learn what people like Montel Williams, New York Times, best selling author Richard Cohen, and Chief Justice of the Colorado Supreme Court, Mary Mullarkey, do to keep their minds sharp even while dealing with MS.
Based on Montel's interview, Jeffrey Gingold gives the following advice:
1. Maintain your mental activity by challenging your mind with learning new skills.
2. Great mental exercise can take the form of studying a new language... (or) learning to play an instrument, such as the piano.
3. Seek out diverse and cognitively stimulating lessons of interest to you.
4. Select a language or musical tune that touches your emotions and makes you smile.
5. Avoiding physical exhaustion may also prevent mental fatigue and loss of focus.
6. Allow yourself mental breaks and take them whenever available.
7. Share your MS impediments and your successful strategies with those who may benefit from your experience.
Mental Sharpening Stones ~ Jeffrey Gingold
Jeffrey has raised thousands of dollars for the National MS Society. He has a team – Team Summit – who regularly participate in the MS Walk to raise money for the society.
Another book, Facing the Cognitive Challenges of Multiple Sclerosis, was written first in 2006. Mental Sharpening Stones was written later, in 2008. In it he interviews several other people besides Montel, Richard, and Mary, who share their methods of dealing with cognitive issues.
A portion of the proceeds of the book - Mental Sharpening Stones - goes to the National MS Society and to the Montel Williams Foundations.
You might also enjoy reading Interviews of people with multiple sclerosis.