Don’t Forget Your Common Sense
It is rather amazing sometimes when I hear about people struggling with their health, whether fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, or anything for that matter, how common sense seems to go out the window. Let me explain…
People wonder why their knees hurt, but they are 50, 100, or 150 pounds over weight. People wonder why they have a headache, but they’ve been eating horribly throughout Christmas. People wonder why they can’t sleep at night, but they drink caffeine and eat foods high in sugar late at night.
So, what do they do? They go visit their doctor and he/she prescribes a pain medication or a sleeping pill of some kind. Really?
It’s Time To Wake Up!!
I am amazed how intellegent people survive with themselves sometimes. Some of the most obvious and common sense things are completely neglected when it comes to taking care of themselves.
These same people can easily dispense the advice to others, but ignore it when it comes to their own health. Let me make a suggestion – take a step back and evaluate things from an objective perspective and you’d be surprised how much money you can save on doctor visits and medication.
Now, I’m not saying ditch your medications… don’t hear that. Here is what I am saying…
There is a direct coorelation between what we put in our mouths and how we feel. To say otherwise is to sound like a person who is in denial that their smoking a pack a day doesn’t effect their health (I have an aunt who still believes her smoking has nothing to do with poor health).
Make Smart, Common Sense Choices
I am not saying that if we eat better then all of our fibromyalgia symptoms will be gone… but, I have certainly heard people say it’s happened to them.
Consider this – how come fibromyalgia wasn’t as prevelant 50 – 100 years ago? Was it because they couldn’t diagnose it back then, or was it because the food we eat, the air we breathe, the stress we put ourselves through, the toxins our bodies absorb, etc. is different today than it was 50 years ago?
I imagine it’s a bit of both. But, when we eat a diet full of carbohydrates and processed food in boxes, I think in some ways we get what we deserve.
I say this very carefully. I am a product of what I have eaten and what I eat. My immune system any body has taken some abuse over the years. Sometimes I compromise too easily when I’m tired and already sore. Sometimes it’s just easier after a hard day.
But… maybe 2013 is a good time to start something different. Maybe a gluten-free diet or some form of healthier diet is the way I should go.
I do know this. I already know how to be healthy and how to make my days better and more manageable. It’s common sense really. When it comes to ourselves and some of the suffering we go through, common sense can be a forgotten friend.
I would encourage you to try a 2 or 3 day period where you eat healthier, go gluten-free for 72 hours, or go low carb. At the end of it, evaluate things.
Anyway, I’m just thinking out loud… speaking to myself more than anything.
Managing Fibromyalgia During Christmas
Fibromyalgia is a medical disorder that affects many people across the United States. It is characterized by a heightened and painful response to pressure, chronic widespread pain, chronic fatigue, joint stiffness, sleep disruptions, and allodynia. Some people who have Fibromyalgia will also experience bowel and bladder abnormalities, numbness and tingling, and have a hard time swallowing.
Fibromyalgia is a medically unexplained disorder and can affect anyone. Many people who have the disorder will spend their lives not knowing it. Even though there is no cure for Fibromyalgia many treatments do exists to help deal with the pain and discomfort associated with the disorder.
The holidays can be a stressful time for anyone. Don’t get me wrong… I love Christmas!! Even people who are completely healthy can find themselves feeling worn down and depressed because of how hectic the holidays can be. The added stress of the holidays can do terrible things to the body and the health.
People who suffer from Fibromyalgia can feel very worn down at the best of times, so Christmas can be a challenge for them. Because there is no known cure it is very important to learn about managing your Fibromyalgia during the holidays. Learning how to manage Fibromyalgia can greatly increase the quality of life for someone who suffers from the disorder.
Though there are no universally accepted treatments for Fibromyalgia there are many things you can do to help manage the disorder. Cognitive behavioral therapy has been show to help many people who suffer from the disorder. It has been shown to help many people with the disorder to deal with there pain. It has also been shown to reduce the amount of follow up doctor’s visits that suffers of Fibromyalgia schedule. When paired with exercise it has had a dramatic affect on test subjects. Taking part in cognitive behavioral therapy could greatly reduce the effects of Fibromyalgia during the holidays.
Along with cognitive behavioral therapy there are many pharmaceuticals available that have been shown to have an effect on the management of Fibromyalgia. Pragbalin, duloxetine, and milnacpan are all medications that have shown to be effective in treating the symptoms of Fibromyalgia. Along with those medications many anti-depressants have shown to have an effect on the disorder. Muscle relaxant and anti-seizure medication have also proven to be effective. Any one of these may have a profound effect on a person suffering from Fibromyalgia and should be considered for managing the disorder during the holidays.
What To Do If You Think You Have Fibromyalgia
There are several things that should be done if a person feels that they may have fibromyalgia. The first step is to make sure the pain and tenderness is not attributed to some other cause. The pain should be constant and widespread. This will ensure that the pain cannot be attributed to some other cause.
The second step is to see a doctor. Only a doctor can diagnose this disease. Since self-diagnosis is not something that should be done, schedule a doctor’s visit. Discuss the symptoms that are causing the suffering and allow the doctor to test for Fibromyalgia.
While there are no tests to determine if one suffers from fibromyalgia, there are several things the doctor can do during a visit. The first is run tests to rule out any other conditions that have similar symptoms to help nail down the diagnosis of fibromyalgia. Blood and urine samples should be collected to help ensure that all tests are done accurately.
The second is to ensure that symptoms fit the disease. To be diagnosed with fibromyalgia, a person must have had at least three months of widespread pain and tenderness in at least 11 of 18 generally considered areas such as arms, chest, knee, lower back and neck.
After the diagnosis has been confirmed by a medical doctor, the next step is to begin to seek treatment to help relieve the pain and cope with the symptoms. There are a variety of treatments and often a combination of treatment is required for alleviation of symptoms and progressing to a cure of the disease. Often physical therapy and a new fitness regimen are often imposed to help combat the stiff and sore feeling fought by strengthening the muscles.
The second involves stress relief methods. This includes light massage, meditation, hydro therapy and a number of other relaxation methods and techniques. There are also several medications that can be prescribed, though this is usually a last result for doctors. The goal is to allow sleep and increase pain tolerance and things such as muscle relaxants are often prescribed.
Fibromyalgia will not disappear overnight. It requires a certain amount of mental toughness and determination to overcome the symptoms as they may continue or even worsen for months or in some cases even years. It is important to eat a balanced diet, avoid caffeine, and get plenty of high quality sleep to help combat this disorder. If possible have friends and family help when they can. The mind is a powerful ally in this battle and should be active to avoid concentrating on the discomfort.
Food Changes May Drastically Reduce Your Fibromyalgia Symptoms
By now you may have read or heard that there is strong evidence that shows a relationship to Fibromyalgia and the foods we eat. It can be a little hard to process at times, as we feel that the whole grain bread and the fortified cereal we eat is supposed to help us, but in reality it can be the very thing that is aggravating our symptoms.
Recent tests and studies have shown a correlation to what a person eats and how they feel, particularly related to Fibromyalgia sufferers. It is suggested that before someone would try to eliminate certain foods from their diet, that they participate in a study, usually a blood test panel, to show if they are sensitive to any one or more than one type of food. Many doctors are able to run these blood tests, and if not, there are naturopathic doctors or Doctor of Osteopathy that may be able to help in the blood work.
Another method if you don’t want to do the blood work is just to try to eliminate foods from your diet. Some people choose to eliminate one thing at a time, and some people try to eliminate several things and then reintroduce them one at time to see if there is a reaction. The more common sensitivities are to wheat, dairy, eggs, and corn. You would be surprised at the food products that have these ingredients in them, particularly corn additives.
There are lists on the internet of foods that contain these ingredients, so you would need to educate yourself and try to avoid any or all of these types of foods for a specific period of time. Most doctors recommend three months of staying off the food or foods, and then see how you feel. Most people see a huge improvement. You can then reintroduce one food at a time for a month to see if there is any reaction. If not, then you could reintroduce another food in the same manner until you find the culprit or culprits to your Fibromyalgia attacks.
This method of thought and treatment can be so contrary to what we’ve been taught for so many years, and what some people what the population to believe, that it is very difficult to make the necessary changes to improve your health. The longer we are exposed to these irritants in our food, the worse our bodies can feel, and the more medications that can be prescribed to help us “feel better.” However, so many medications contain products that can be making symptoms worse, like wheat or corn. It can be a vicious cycle, but with education, support and some motivation, you can make these changes and see improvements in your health.
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