Many of the early symptoms of MS are so subtle that the person who is experiencing them does not realize that they have any significance at all. In fact for the most part people tend to dismiss them as not worth worrying about and do not bother to go see their doctor for a diagnosis. By doing this they allow the disease to progress unabated for far longer than it should and cause more damage before it is caught.
Early symptoms of MS that most people tend to ignore and dismiss as nothing to worry about are the feelings of numbness and tingling in their legs and arms. The typical thought is that this is a result of the way they were sitting or laying down and that the limb has "gone to sleep". If this symptom goes away quickly they may be right but if it lasts for hours and continues to reoccur then it can be the first signs of the onset of multiple sclerosis.
These early symptoms of MS can also lead to the person experiencing temporary stiffness or even paralysis of one or more extremities from individual fingers or toes to entire arms or legs. They may also have episodes of poor balance or lack of coordination where they normally have perfect scores in both areas. Instances of muscle spasms know as spasticity are an indicator that there is a problem that should be tested for.
Cognitive difficulties can be one of the early symptoms of MS, but may be so subtle that it is not noticed or is easily dismissed. Problems with the thought process of connecting a thought to the right words while a person is talking is a classic symptom. Having difficulties remembering what you are supposed to be doing at a particular time or during the day can also be an indicator although this can be a sign of many other issues. Slurred speech for someone who is normally well spoken and has good diction can be an indicator that something is going on in the speech center of their brain.
While many of these symptoms are mild and easy to dismiss, it is far better to go see your physician and get tested to make sure that they are not the precursor to something more serious. Multiple sclerosis is not curable at this time but with early detection the damage it does can be kept to a minimum allowing the patient to live a long and productive life.