Tag Archives: chronic pain

FibrofighterNicole Weekend Update

The Agony of Fibromyalgia

Entertainment 

  • Movie – Julie & Julia
  • TV Shows – Cutthroat Kitchen, Family Guy, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, Quantico.
  • Music: Disclosure, Sia, Enya, Jess Glynne, Gorgon City, Letherette, AlunaGeorge, Skrillex, Diplo, Jack U, The Jets, Robert Palmer.

The Agony of Fibromyalgia  

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The chronic illness battle has been on fire for me this weekend. A big thing to note is that I’m without my (herbal) medicine and that makes all of my illnesses worse including my depression. Add on my usual depression during the holidays. I can’t afford it anymore. The costs are higher and beyond my budget which means I’m going to really suffer during the holidays season and next month. I hate no having money to get things I need. I wish I could take care of it myself. I’ve even asked for help and got my response back or ignored.  I’ve been crying every single day as the fibromyalgia pain is too high up. I’ve thought of setting up a GoFundMe to possibly get funding to pay for my herbal medicine. The only thing has stopped me is that I don’t know enough people who would be willing to help me in that way. I also need help in getting more crafting supplies for my art therapy art supplies. I see so many others who gain funding so easily.  I feel really stuck with those type of things.  I’m happy that I created an Etsy shop to showcase my crafting mixed media artwork.  

 Most times I feel like I’m losing my fecking mind and that no one can help me get better. I’m on the east coast for the holiday season. I wasn’t planning on being out here during the holidays season but I couldn’t afford traveling back to see my parents. I’ve been experiencing high levels of depression and a spike in fibromyalgia pain. Everything in my body has flared up, and inflammation is heavy. One of the issues is joint pain that affects my ability to do anything. I can’t type well, can’t grasp things well, nor move properly. The weather here has been all over here from 30 degrees to 70 degrees. Add on chilly winds and such dramatic changes in the barometer and humidity. My body is unable to get used to any of the weather changes and it is never given a chance to get used to the weather or its surroundings. Im sure it will dip down in colder weather season again and I’ll be crying all over again which may happen tonight. I’ve exhausted all that would make me happy and I don’t have anything else. I’m still limited with my crafts as I don’t have all that I need to make even better completed crafting projects. 
 

There are things I’d love to get that would reduce my fibromyalgia pain and my depression disorders but it’s very expensive and there are legalities attached to it. While it has been decriminalized it’s not enough to guarantee safety. These are the times I wish I was living back in California again as I would have access to that wonderful green plant they have there in various strains. And it’s strong. That’s the only medicine that helps to relieve my pain completely. The strengths here are uneven compared to the legal states. There is no way to know what strain is being used nor what strength. I’ve learned I need to use a higher level strain to reduce my fibromyalgia pain and elevate my mood. My pain is too high. Entirely too high. I’ve learned what I need isn’t available.  

   

 

While I’m here with family, I see it is still difficult for them to understand what’s going on with me and I don’t understand them well. It’s hard to explain what’s going on with me too in laymen terms. I wish I had more interesting things to discuss but right now I do not. My health is numero uno.  All I know is that I’m feeling the full wrath of my chronic illnesses.
I don’t feel a connection with them like I should and I believe it’s vice versa for them. It feels like my needs are seen as lazy and immature. I’ll always be kid in my mind and heart. I’m awkward in how I speak and my words come out of me out of order. I end up offending them without realizing it and these days I’m afraid to speak. They want me to act a certain way, and that’s not me. It’s not a part of my personality. I like how silly, and humorous I am. A good sense of humor.  I hope one day I’ll be able to care for myself but I know I would need to have a caregiver to help me.  The list of things I can’t do is very overwhelming.  I try to not think about it too much as much as I can but I’m not always successful.  

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All About Costochrondritis

chestpain1Costochrondritis is one of the toughest symptoms of fibromyalgia that I’ve ever experienced.  It is truly the worst pain I’ve ever experienced as the pain is heavily radiated causing inflammation in my ribcage area.  Several years later I began to experience the severity of costochrondritis and I honestly believed I was having a heart attack.  Not only had the fibromyalgia pain spread all over my body but the intense pain from costochrondritis started from my chest, and then expanded to my stomach, my entire back and my legs.

Costochrondritis is a medical condition that causes chest wall pain around the ribcage and breast bone area which is within the chest wall.  Inflammation occurs when the cartilage swells up is connected to the ribs and breast bone area.  The level of pain depends on how much inflammation there is within the cartilage.  The pain levels can vary from mild to very painful. Basically the condition worsened the pain in my body making it hard to move and get things done.

 

I ended up in the emergency room several times as the attacks were so intense that I thought I was dying.  At my final visit to the ER over this issue, a physician told me that it sounded like costochrondritis caused by the fibromyalgia.  That’s when I learned the scary depths of fibromyalgia and all of the things it could lead to and how it could affect me.  Any type of additional pain affects my other illnesses too. I learned that I have to treat this pain separately and collectively with all of my chronic health problems. I make sure I get checked out regularly to ensure I haven’t developed another health problem.

costochondritisThe causes of costochrondritis are still unknown but there are various theories including:

  • Chest trauma such as a car accident
  • Physical strain that causes repetitive trauma
  • Upper respiratory infections and other viral infections
  • Other illnesses such as arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, rheumatoid arthritis, and osteoarthritis.
  • Tumors that are cancerous and noncancerous can cause costochrondritis too.

Some of the treatments of costochrondris vary from home remedies to prescription medications.  Here is a list of several the most popular treatments recommended to treat costochrondritis such as:

  • Apply heat or ice to the inflamed area
  • Usage of over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen or naproxen. It is recommended that it is best to take these medications with food.  However, for those with stomach problems, kidney disease, ulcers, or bleeding disorders shouldn’t take these medications.
  • There are local anesthetic and steroid injection options to treat costochrondritis. The injection is injected into the most tender spot affected by costochrondritis. This treatment option is available for patients who are affected by the chest wall pain and other prescription medications haven’t worked.
  • Antibiotics are used for patients with bacterial of fungal costochrondritis that has been causing infections to occur.

 

slide02-fibromyalgia-radiating-painAvoid any sort of strenuous activities such as exercise as it can make the symptoms until the symptoms have improved.  After this has happened then resume normal or regular activities.

In my future posts I will touch upon this topic as I consider a serious medical condition that is often misdiagnosed, misunderstood, and I feel that more people need to be informed about it.

 

 

 

 

 

References:

MayoClinic – http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/costochondritis/basics/definition/con-20024454/

 

Daily FibroFighter Series – A New Beginning

butterfly

I have been given the opportunity to learn more about what could possibly help me to feel better.  I have been chronically ill for over 17 years with various illnesses and the lovely symptoms that go with those illnesses.  I spend a bit more time thinking about all of the things that happened last year. I found it to be amazing, shocking and scary all at the same time.   There were great things that generated a boost in confidence that I can and will be able to help myself out more. I was able to do many things last year that I haven’t been able to do in the past 10 years since I’ve been sick.

I have been focusing on finding the best ways to ease my fibromyalgia pain, and other ailments.  I felt that it was time to figure it out as I now have a chance and resources to do it.  It has been a long time coming and very much needed.

My current goals consist of maintaining my weight which has spurred on more than I thought.  I have lost some weight in the past several months through changing the way I eat and doing different types of exercise.  I enjoy doing Yoga stretches, walking, and dancing.  I also follow workout videos that I’ve found online.

My current health goals consist of continuing to:

  • Maintain my weight loss through expanding my food palette.
  • Try out different workout options that can be done anywhere.
  • Research and try out alternative complementary therapies that I believe may work in reducing the symptoms of all of my illnesses.

These goals aren’t just for the year but these are goals that will be with me for life.  My plan is to chronicle my progress on my blog as I think this is the best way for others to learn what I’m doing to improve my health and overall livelihood.  I have received so many questions over the years and finally I feel ready to share on a more public platform which will include the general media and social media networking sites.

 

 

 

 

The Daily Fight Series

Gratitude

Gratitude

Today is one of those days where I have to fight even harder to get up and moving around. Each day is different and I never know how I’ll feel. Today my back hurts more than anything and the muscle spasms hurt on top of that. My arms, legs, feet, head, and yes even my eyelashes hurt! There is no way to escape the various issues that fibromyalgia and the other illnesses I deal with too.

Even though I don’t feel well I got up out of my bed anyway. I still wonder if I should get a cane but 14+ years later I have refused to get one. I hold onto the furniture, and walls to get around my home. Sometimes I fall down and that hurts but you know what? I get right back up again.

I thought about my goals and what I would like to do today.

Goals for today included:

  1. Paid work
  2. Create my third post for the week
  3. Make a final decision on my topics for next week
  4. Comment on blogs of fellow bloggers
  5. Spend time reading blogs and the news
  6. Encourage others

So that looks like a lot but I’ve managed to complete over half of my goals.

I take my time while completing my goals. Now keep in mind I don’t always succeed but I keep going anyway and that is the most important part. I know that people may not be able to understand what I’m going through but all I can hope is they will reach deep inside to find compassion in their hearts.

The Health Benefits of Laughter Therapy

laughingI have been using laughter therapy as a way of coping with all of my chronic disorders and diseases. While it has not been able to keep my mind completely off of the intense chronic pain and health problems I’m battling,  it still has in many ways relaxed my body. To laugh during such a difficult time in my life has helped me in more ways than I could ever imagine.  It would be hard for me to list them all.   I would say that it has saved my life.  I have been chronically ill with fibromyalgia for almost 15 years, depression disorders, and various other illnesses that completely ravaged my body making it impossible for me to control how my body reacts and functions.

I discovered that laughter has really helped me to keep my emotions in check to a degree and I feel a little better about myself.  Laughing has helped to keep my mind off of my fibromyalgia pain and side effects of my prescribed medications. There are times, such as now where my pain is incredibly high and I’m unable to find suitable assistance, I have found laughter therapy to still be a beneficial tool and a coping mechanism through all of the difficult battles I have dealt with over the years.  There are various well-documented medical research done on the effect of using laughter as a therapy tool.  The power of laughter is that it’s an antidote to relieving stress, problems and yes even pain.  Humor has the ability to bring much needed balance in the person’s life and lightens up their load too.

Benefits of laughter:

  • Reduces stress hormones such as endorphins, adrenaline and cortisol
  • Fights against respiratory infections and boosts the body’s immune system
  • Prevents heart disease
  • Expands the person’s views on situations reducing overwhelmed feelings
  • Improves the person’s overall mood
  • Add joy and excitement
  • Strengthens relationships with others
  • Defuses difficult situations
  • Attracts others to us and encourages unity amongst one another
  • Improves memory, alertness, and creativity
  • Increases memory and learning capabilities
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Gives the diaphragm, and abdominal region a good workout including respiratory, facial, back, and leg muscles

Ideas of where to find something funny to laugh at?

  • YouTube videos are a wonderful option as many videos are a few minutes long and can provide a much needed release.  My favorite type of videos to watch are primarily animal-based videos such as cats, dogs and wildlife getting themselves into the most interesting case of circumstances.
  • Reading online comic strips and cartoons.  Both of these can easily be found anywhere online, especially on Facebook.  I follow many online comics strips Facebook pages providing me exactly what I need each day.
  • Funny TV shows and movies are still the best options of watching something that appeals to you and will get you in the right frame of mind.
  • Search for comedians and people in general who will make you laugh. Attending a comedy club is the perfect way to get yourself in the laughing mood.
  • Do something silly and what that entails for me is making funny faces in the mirror.  Eventually I will laugh.  Sometimes it takes time for me to laugh but I will chuckle a little in due time.

 

So please keep in mind that laughter is truly the best medicine.

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