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I have had this relentless migraine pain for over a month. I tried everything under the sun (Or dark?) to abort it. Or reduce it. Or manage it. And nada. Today it broke. Aside from vertigo and dizzy spells. But that is ‘nother story.

This is a story of the migraine mood slump.

It can hit you right away. It can hit you after a week of bad days in a row. Or, for me, after a solid month of pain.

At first, paingry. At the whole situation I am in right now with not being able to drive or work. So paingry. Angry at the pain. Angry at how it is treated by insurance companies. Just really, really angry.

But anger takes energy.

It is difficult to maintain.

And when the pain just will not stop for one damn second… then comes the slump. When my depression wasn’t treated this was more like a plummet of doom that would suck me down into a slippery slope of hell. But even with depression managed, pain gets to you, man. We do our self-care. We try every trick we have to help manage the pain somewhat. But when we fail, we are definitely at risk for lowered mood.

And you know it is just because you are just so exhausted and tired.

It is important to remember to maintain treatment. So when this happens and you are stuck in a status migraine I generally recommend the ER to break it. But I rarely want to even attempt it. Although I told my spouse just a couple of days ago I was thinking about it. It was just getting to me.

But I maintained:
  • regular ice therapy
  • hydration
  • amped up the magnesium
  • took Epsom salt baths
  • meditation
  • every so often tried the tiptan again, but not too much. As tempting as it is to try to relieve the pain, I don’t want to rebound and make it worse
  • and just let myself take it easy without guilt

Because you never know what will kick in. Sometimes we have to ride it out. Sometimes we can get a handle on it and diminish the pain, at the very least. But we don’t feel like doing these things. It is like, that failed me. And failed me. And I am just so tired of even trying. The mood slump is part of this. Just being so very tired. And getting rest during these times is also vital. Just giving ourselves just a damn break.

However, I remind myself that self-care is more than a nice bath and a cup of tea. It is all our pain management strategies.

And mood slumps? They too have to be managed in any way we can. I like some time to myself to write or read. Something I can use to distract myself and also enjoy. Usually helps.

Then the migraine broke today. No migraine pain all day today. Finally! it is a welcome break.

I do have some recommendations I use when I am in the migraine slump: Self-care: When you are in a migraine funk

See also:

Hobbies and activities to help with self-care

Self-care Sunday: Coloring

Remembering the self-care

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I added a button to my posts and in the upper corner of my blog for a site called Ko-fi for people to support artists and writers. It is this feature here:

I added it because I am really struggling with everything since my insurance company has not approved my leave since November.

But this is for:
  • If you like my posts
  • Like the work I am doing
  • Like the images I post on my Facebook Page
  • Are a fan of my work. Even my fiction work.

And if you do think I am awesome then this is a way to show appreciation by clicking on it. $3 dollars is their minimum.

But you can still think I am awesome and not do that.

It isn’t mandatory. Like Buy me a coffee or else! Nothing like that. No obligation. No hassling people. Just a button on the blog and on the post. That is all.

It is just an option to show that you do like my work.

So if you see the button, that is what it is all about.

What it basically is, is that outside of work, my main skill is writing and blogging. And as a skill it is great. I love it. I am passionate about it. Helps me as a pain distraction and to get awareness out. And to make me think through some problems with coping I am having. But I don’t make money at it. And I sure would like to find a way to do that to help support myself. And I saw a lot of people used this so their readers could offer some support to help them keep doing what they do. I thought it was a great idea. A sort of way for people to help you to continue doing what you love.

I thought I should explain why you are seeing that.

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Let me tell you a story. A story about vertigo and my ENT visit.

I have never been to an ENT before for my vestibular problems. I just went to my neurologist who said they were vestibular migraines. And tried to treat them with such things as Verapamil and Sebelium. Both of which are calcium channel blockers and researched well for vestibular migraines with the whole vertigo issue. He refused to see me this last time because he actually said there was literally nothing he could do for me. My doctor wanted to rule out other vestibular conditions, however. And there are a few of them.

The Vertigo

Let’s talk about vestibular migraines will tell you all about criteria and symptoms.

The main issue I was really concerned about was how each of these longer lasting bouts of mine due to driving regularly gets more severe every time. And unlike the typical vestibular migraine… they last a long time. If I keep driving, they just get worse and worse. When I stop driving and stay at home it takes a month to a year to get down to sporadic episodes. It doesn’t ever really go away. Motion triggers it pretty quick. Planes, trains, boats, elevators, escalators… anything will do it. Sometimes for hours mildly, sometimes for days severely. And I get like random attacks. No rhyme or reason from seconds to days. But driving regularly is a motion trigger that will trigger a massive enduring bout. I was so non-functional for four to five months. Then it slowly eased up a bit.

So the ENT visit

Despite the longevity of these severe attacks the ENT firmly believes they are migraine induced. He is going to just confirm with another test, but he is pretty positive about it. Which, currently, leaves me nothing to treat it with until the new class of CGRP blocking meds are approved here for migraine. That, in theory, could be any month now.

The ENT asked me about how my vertigo and symptoms function. Then he did that table thing for Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), which didn’t help. But that would have been pretty sweet, because that can be Helped at least. Then he had me stand with my feet pressed together. And I couldn’t stand straight if my life depended on it. He wanted me to do the same with my eyes closed, but I just was going to fall. As soon as I closed my eyes my body was like ‘we need to be on the ground’ and I caught myself good on that one. He also wanted me to stand with one foot slightly ahead of the other, which was more stable and just caused me to slowly start to lean over until I caught myself.

Keep in mind, my vertigo is so much better than it was. I had a hell of a time walking and standing before and even used a cane. But we had a longer than normal drive to his office. That’ll do it. That’ll do it good… right to the brain. And means the now triggered vertigo will last about three days. It isn’t bad right now because when I got home I felt sick, so took a couple hour nap, and then later, did the same thing. This makes it less severe for a duration. 

Now a story of a bunch of fools all doing the same thing and never getting a different result.

The irony of it is a just got a new car. New to me, anyway. Because my brother hit a deer in my last one. And the deer survived, but my car did not. And now I can’t drive it. My spouse has been because it is vastly more fuel efficient than a truck. Yes, my wee Kia Rio rocks. Sadly, I’ll be a passenger for some time.

The ENT specifically said I cannot drive. Now, this is vital because I am a stupid person. Yeah, I won’t drive when it get severe which is why I missed so much work before my leave. But the vertigo was triggered slowly and consistently when I returned to work from my last unpaid leave. Which has been its pattern for the last eight years. Sporadic short episodes, then brief intense bouts of dizziness, disorientation, and vertigo. So brief I wondered if I was just about the pass out. Then longer. And longer. And I couldn’t function during them. I would try to step away from my post and pretend to do busy work because I was so out of it. Then the disequilibrium, mildly. Then really not mild and I had issues walking. THEN I said I can’t drive or function when I am at work. So I push it, man, I push it.

And now, my insurance company is refusing to support my leave. They said they would consider it after the ENT appointment. So this is since November I have had no income. Thank goodness my mom has helped me pay my bills. So, often in this situations, I force myself to return to work against doctor orders. My doctor has been adamant for some time I cannot work. But I’d do it again rather than starve. So him telling me I can’t, is one of the reasons I won’t be that stupid. Poor, yes. But not stupid.

I don’t want to endanger other’s lives just because my insurance company is messed in the head. I get it. I do. I cannot prove the pain I am in. So they don’t care. Also didn’t care I was suicidal. But this? Is an issue. It potentially affects other people when they force me to return to work. And like a group of idiots, we all end up in the same place. Like a merry-go–round of moron. I do the same thing, with the same result. And they go ‘meh, it is just migraines, depression, and fibromyalgia’.

So here we are. Same problem on repeat. Refresh, rinse, repeat.
  1. I am on leave. Sometimes not paid at all.
  2. I am forced back to work
  3. Without my doctors permission. She is the only one that isn’t a fool.
  4. Things get worse. Pain. Depression. Missed work. Presenteeism
  5. But I do it. Because life can really suck like that
  6. Then, inevitably, the sporadic vertigo kicks in
  7. I think, maybe it is just temporary. Because, it never is when I drive regularly. But I forget. But this time, I went back into my written history. It literally is ever time. Faster if it is full-time. And faster if it is a commute to work of about twenty minutes. It was slower onset with part-time. But so severe in the end.
  8. And I wait. Thinking maybe it is something else. POTS. Or low blood pressure. Because the severe dizzy spells are not vertigo, yet. And the falling sensations and drop attacks haven’t happened, often, yet.
  9. Then all hell breaks loose in my brain and it is severe. And I can’t drive or function.
  10. I go on leave
  11. My insurance company refuses to do anything without more proof. As is par the course with them. You know I never did get how my suicide attempts were not proof of my Major Depressive Disorder. But I do blame my insurance company for the second one. Ignoring the MDD like that. Like it is insignificant.
  12. I struggle to pay my bills. My mom helps me out, because she is awesome, but I feel guilty she needs to.
  13. I end up going back to work because I can’t live on air. This one hasn’t happened yet. Because I can’t drive. Yet. If it gets so mild that it seems well and good, they will force me back to work.
  14. And then around we go all of us fools.
So ends the story of fools.

But this time the ENT put the foot down. My doctor doesn’t want me to return, at all. And the insurance company wins if they pay me or not. If they pay me, it is now at part-time wages not full time. I should never have been taken off the long term, like they did. So now I will get less income, if they manage to just pay out. I know it is hard for them. Easy when they take our money, but not so easy to pay us when we need it.

So my ENT appointment went fine. But I am angry about this cycle.

Other posts on vertigo

What it is cognitively like with vertigo

7 reasons vestibular migraines suck

Let’s talk vestibular migraine

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It is EDS awareness month. Here is some EDS info here.

I have Hypermobile EDS (hEDS) When I was diagnosed it was Joint Hypermobility with chronic soft tissue pain. The chronic soft tissue pain was his way of saying ‘developing fibromyalgia’, which I did.

Symptoms:
  • Joint hypermobility
  • Soft smooth skin that bruises easily
  • Chronic pain and joint pain
  • Early onset Osteoporosis
  • Gastrointestinal issues
  • Dysfunction of automatic nervous system (Including POTs)
  • Cardiovascular abnormalities
  • Fatigue
  • And more

I have all of these except Cardiovascular abnormalities, but my heart, well, it does weird things.

Some comorbids of EDS I have:
  • Thyroid issues
  • Depression
  • Fibromyalgia
  • IBS
  • Tinnitus
  • Insomnia
  • Migraines
  • Dizziness
  • Fallen arches (This was called flexible flat feet for me and likely just due to the hEDS anyway)
  • TMJ
Why awareness is important

I was diagnosed with joint hypermobility syndrome when I was 16. I had been complaining of pain when I was a kid. I was always tired. I had pervasive insomnia. And I finally got diagnosed. At which they told me to exercise. That is all. Never saw the specialist again, until I went to one in my early 20’s and got further diagnosed with fibromyaliga. Also no treatment recommended. Also suggested I do exercises. Never what sort I should Do, though, and figuring that out has been a real trial.

Now when I mention it to doctors they really have no clue what I am talking about. My doc said it was unlikely I had arthritis in my hands because I was too young. And I have pre-osteoporosis. It was blamed on my asthma meds and anti-seizure drugs for migraine, even though I mentioned the joint hypermobility. She said I may have POTS and I mentioned it again. And in none of these things do they think it is related at all. Hell, when I mentioned it to the pain doc he gave me that Look. That said he couldn’t figure out why I was mentioning it because it wasn’t relative, to him.

They have no clue. In no way have I been treated for it. In no way do they think any symptoms I have are connected to it… something new? Fibromyalgia maybe? Not the EDS hypermobility. I have no idea the extent of my miscellaneous symptoms are due to EDS, because it is Never factored in.

And that is the best reason for awareness. This severe lack of knowledge in the medical community about what all forms of EDS can do to the overall body. It isn’t just super bendy. It isn’t just dislocations, bruising, and spraining things all the time, but it is definitely that as well.

Related posts:

EDS hypermobility and joint hypermobility syndrome

POTS

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Today is the end of Mental Illness Awareness Week.

I have Major Depressive Disorder.

I don’t talk about it much since it is treated with Abilify and is so much better than it was.

It was extremely difficult with chronic pain. Depression lies. A lot. And with chronic pain those lies seem to be very true. Rationally true. And, to be honest, those lies still seem true but they are not so powerfully compelling to me anymore. You cannot mask the reality of chronic pain. It is real. It is tangible. And it impact every aspect or your life. Depression simply amplifies the very real facts of chronic pain that we constantly deal with. To the point the Noise of it is constant torture of its own. It is a dark, dark place.

I would think with depression:
  • I am worthless. I am functionally useless to society as a whole and if I ceased to exist the world would actually be a better place without me.
  • I am a burden to all those that love me
  • That chronic pain is essentially torture and I wouldn’t put a pet through the pain I have.
  • That life is definately not worth living because of the above points. And suicide is a well played out fantasy. I did actively attempt suicide twice, so those thoughts are dangerous. But partly that was due to antidepressants which, for me, amplify my depression to massive suicidal levels. Thus why I am on Abilify and can’t be on antideprrasants like I was off-label for chronic migraines and fibromyalgia.

And now all that is to a dull roar. Not an inferno of torcherous thoughts.

I still have self-worth problems

My psychologist would point out my acomplishments. Even with this like the work I do on this blog. Or my fiction writing. And I wouldn’t feel anything I do was worthwhile. It didn’t make me feel productive. It didn’t make me feel accomplished. And I have a very difficult time taking compliments on any achievment I have. Almost like I don’t own that. It was luck. Happenchance. Not Me.

I still feel like a burden

I think with chornic illness this is extremely common. We are not doing what we Feel we should be doing. The lack we feel is there means everything we do isn’t enough. And everything we do do isn’t sufficient. Since I have been off work… but not yet compensated from my insurance, so need financial assistence from my mom. And I can’t drive, so she drives me where I need to go. Anyway, it is difficult not to feel really useless. Like my problems would be solves, if I could only work full-time… and yet I can never maintain it without serious issues. So I feel it is all my fault because I can’t.

I still feel chronic pain is torture

It just is. There isn’t any part of your life that isn’t impacted.  When we have to try and function with it, it is a really brutal thing.

But, I am not suicidal

I no longer have suicidal ideation or intent. It is like it just poofed out with the medication. Even in high pain, which was always a really difficult time for me. But I also don’t work as much, which with high pain is literally torture. It just begins to break you. But between therapy and medication this is something I don’t deal with right now.

And I feel better

The medication diminished the intensity of the depression I was experiencing. And that means some of the other symptoms like sleeping too much, lack of any motivation at all, hopelessness, and lacking joy in activities are gone as well.

Sometimes people are shamed for ‘being weak’ by taking medication, but it vastly imroved my existence in every way. There is no shame in taking medication when needed.

Clearly medication doesn’t Make you Happy or decrease the effects of chronic pain. But it definitely can dull the inferno of depression. I feel the sunshine now, although that pain makes for quite a storm on its own. Life is worth living in those pain gaps. And it isn’t such an effort to exist.

Mental illness affects 1 in 5 Canadians. There is no shame in it. We should be able to talk about it and treat it without the pervasive stigma there is out there. I hid mine for years because I felt like it was a weakness I had to Overcome. Or it was Natural with pain, and to a degree I think mood regulation is very difficult with pain, but clinical depression isn’t normal.

See related posts:

Depression is more than emotion

8 things to consider for depression

6 reasons I masked my depression

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It is Fibromyalgia Awareness Day today I have done a few fibro posts recently:

When you have fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is more than pain

Rock your purple!

Today’s topic for fibromyalgia is Challenges

We face many challenges with fibromyalgia. Here are some that I have experience with.

Work challenges

I found out when I was younger via every summer job I worked that there are certain jobs I cannot do with fibromaylgia. I can’t do a customer service job where you stand all day. I can’t do a job where you have to lift any sort of weight all day. And I can’t do a job with repetitive movements… that is a massive chest wall pain trigger. So basically I need a job I can sit down to do, like an office job. Even as a bank teller, I get to sit down.

Another work challenge was that it was next to impossible to get them to do an assessment for accommodation in the workplace for me. It just literally never happened. This could have improved the pain from sitting all day.

And the third work challenge I faced was fibro fog. Forgetting policy. Forgetting simple things. Forgetting words. I had a notebook and binders, for cheats. Forget? Look it up in the area I have made for just that. But it doesn’t stop you from sounding like an idiot when words never come out right.

The final work challenge is dealing with the relentless pain and immense fatigue and trying to be productive through it.

Social challenges

It is hard to make definitive plans. I may be having a really bad pain day when the event comes up and have to cancel. I cancel a lot. And other times I have to leave early when I get too fatigued or in too much pain. And the fatigue just prevents the desire to go anywhere. Not even counting how sucky it is with pain. So what social life I have is really rare and mellow.

Around the house challenges

I never seem to get housework done to the level I want it done. I can only do one Thing a day. And one Thing the next. To pace myself. If I do too much, assuming I even have the energy to, it will flare me. So I do it bit by bit. But then by the time I get things done, it really needs to be done again because it is so slow. So the whole house is never to my satisfaction. I can help with painting walls or painting a fence… but it Will trigger a massive flare. As will cleaning the walls.

Basically with fibromyalgia we:
  • Have challenges with pacing. When we do too much, instead of pacing. We flare, and flare badly.
  • Flares are a challenge in themselves because they happen for many reasons and when they do we can’t do much at all except self-care
  • Painsomnia and the problems we all have with sleeping are a real challenge. Trying to get actual restorative sleep for 6-8 hours is difficult. And if we oversleep? That causes a lot of pain.
  • Fibro Fog is a real challenge for work and just functioning.
  • Fatigue is a challenge because when it is high we have no energy for anything. And everything saps our energy so very fast.
  • The unpredictability of symptoms and severity is a challenge because it is hard to live a life when any plan could be ruined or days missed at work.
I always recommend:
  • Exercise: slowly building up aerobic exercise. If we get up to 20 min a day, walking or stationary bike… that is a pretty good achievement.
  • Pacing even on good days, is something I recommend a lot. It does prevent overdoing it flares. And it manages our energy levels.
  • Napping when you need it. And also resting before you go out to give a boost for your energy levels.
  • For fibro fog like I mentioned I write a lot of things down for reference of what I need to know. I cannot predict how bad my memory will be on any given day. I end up doing a lot of typos with FM as well, when the wrong word comes out… so I tend to do everything on the computer and not handwritten. It can catch my weird FM typos. (with the peripheral neuropathy I have in my hands the computer is far better than handwriting).
  • Epsom salt baths are something I do for self-care and getting a boost of magnesium
  • I highly recommend taking magnesium. My doc also recommended 5000 iu of vit D for chronic pain.
Some great posts to read for fibromyalgia awareness

Allodynia and fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia and sleep issues

Cognitive dysfunction and fibromyalgia, including fibro fog

Magnesium and fibromyalgia

Research

Long-term study on Fibromyalgia severity

Small-fiber neuropathy and fibromyalgia

CBT for fibromyaligia worth it?

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It is peripheral neuropathy awareness week (May 6-12).

I almost missed it because I swore up and down it was in November, but someone on my Facebook Page mentioned it. So here we are!

Here is an awareness link.

My story

So I have had peripheral neuropathy for years. I’d say it is idiopathic because they just speculate about the cause. However, I do have fibromyalgia and that is pretty comorbid. The neuro speculated it was caused by the status migraine I had. But that is bull. Because while a status migraine is risky… it raises the risk of stroke and heart attack. It doesn’t cause permanent nerve damage. So I call it idiopathic since no one looked into it. Or treated it. Or did anything at all aside from telling me what it was. Bravo! Docs.

I had this status migraine that lasted for more than a week. I was feeling rough, man. I went to bed… and woke up with half my right hand numb. Like a thick numbness. Not a migraine aura… to deep. Starting at the pinkie and going to mid-finger… through the palm and down to the wrist. I ignored it. Because maybe from the wicked persistent migraine? And over the course of a week, it spread, just seeping across my hand. By the time it had reached the last finger… it was also starting on the left hand.

But it then stopped getting worse. So my left hand, got a bit better actually, it is just extremely sensitive on the two fingers and part of the hand it affected temperature wise. But the right hand? Well, it is completely affected and the two first fingers that got hit first actually have some motor damage and don’t work well anymore. The rest of the hand is numb, prickly, and if I use it a lot, it hurts like hell. Now the feeling is more ‘glove-like’ and less this deep numbness. I am, of course, right-handed so this was just awesome. My writing, which always has been messy, is pretty much illegible now. And I had to learn how much pressure to put on things. I would pick up a can of pop but since I can’t feel well, I’d drop it. Ironically, this all developed While on Lyrica (for fibromyalgia)… so so much for that helping.

My mom has peripheral neuropathy as well. But in her case, not idiopathic, but from chemotherapy treatments. She has it in her feet which isn’t a fun place because that is one area always having pressure on it. As a result, she cannot wear socks and has a real problem with most shoes. The prickling pain for my mom is pretty bad. For me, it was severe but has diminished over time. Maybe from the B12 I take, maybe just random. But if it is the B12, it took years to help. But I take a good bit of it now.

Here are the symptoms of peripheral neuropathy
  • That glove-like sensation. Or sock-like sensation.
  • Burning sensation or a cold, sharp pain
  • Tingling, prickling sensations
  • Sharp, electrical-like pain (common for me when I use my hand for writing and what-not)
  • Sensitivity to touch. Just really hyper-sensitive
  • Muscle weakness and loss of coordination. As well as muscle cramping.
  • Abnormalities in blood pressure, and/or pulse.
  • Unusual sweating
  • Hot and cold sensitivity
  • Like my hand, you can have motor damage along with weakness.
  • Numbness

It can be idiopathic peripheral neuropathy, like my case. It can be from cancer treatment, like my mom. But also with diabetes, Alcoholism, B vitamin deficiencies, as well as inflection or autoimmune diseases.  And, generally, it affects both sides. I have no idea what caused mine to happen, let alone why it stopped when it reached the left hand so that only the pinkie and ring finger is affected.

I, personally, take B12 and do hand exercises for the hand peripheral neuropathy. I also take tramadol which helps with my FM, and also the hand. I test temperature with my left hand because the right has no clue what temperature things are. I don’t do dishes manually… the water is too hot. I really try to do everything on the computer rather hand handwritten. At work, they liked you to print forms and do them manually… but I couldn’t do it. For one, have to Really concentrate to write in a way people can understand. And even that, is far from neat. And doing that all day? Lot of pain. So I did everything on the computer. Now that I am in a part-time role as a bank teller… I have less of a choice in this and it makes it tricky. Especially with drafts that you have to fill out for the customer. And the customer gets ticked when you ask them to fill it out themselves. So I have to do it, and damn, so hard to write clearly enough. I know they can tell I am extremely slow at it, but slow is better than illegible.

The pain really fluctuates. When I use the had a lot, obviously, but other times for no reason at all.

Related posts:

Small-fiber neuropathy and fibromyalgia

small-fiber polyneuropathy and fibromyalgia

Paresthesia and Fibromyalgia

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Time for another post about Fibromaygia for Awareness month. Fibromyalgia is more than widespread pain

Primary symptoms

Primary symptoms are the areas used to diagnose someone with Fibromyalgia because they happen to a degree in all of us.

Chronic widespread pain

Yes, there is chronic widespread pain. It is often the symptom people think of. Yes, we have pain. All the time. And we can flare up with a lot more than our baseline pain as well. And there are more types of pain than people think. See Fibromyalgia Pains, which includes the tortuous burning of allodynia

Fatigue

The fatigue can be as relentless as the pain. No napping will ever get rid of this intense exhaustion. You feel beaten down, lethargic, tired soon after we do things, and just no energy to spare when we want to do something.

Sleep dysfunction

With fibromyalgia, we have some major issues with quality of sleep. Due to our brains, we do not get as much deep, restorative sleep, so when we wake up we do not feel refreshed. We are very prone to delayed onset insomnia, where we struggle just to get to sleep. As well as sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome.

Cognitive dysfunction

We have what is often referred to as Fibro Fog. It is intense brain fog that affects our memory, short-term memory, working memory, focus, and concentration. We can sometimes lose our train of thought. Forget the words to things. Or use the wrong word in conversation.

Comorbids

We often get a lot of comorbids. From migraines to IBS. I gained hypothyroidism and peripheral neuropathy along with the chronic migraines and IBS-D. And they compound the chronic pain and chronic illness of Fibromyalgia. Decreasing our quality of life.

Miscellaneous symptoms

Other than the primary categories I just listed we have a lot of other symptoms in the mix. I have sensitivities to chemicals and have to be careful about detergents and cleaning products. I can’t wear make-up or use perfume. I also have low blood pressure, get night sweats, and get palpitations… all symptoms of Fibromyalgia.

All this can be life-altering. I can’t work certain jobs that require a lot of standing, lifting, or repetitive movements. Repetitive movements and lifting aggravate the chest wall pain called Costochondritis to an insane degree. And standing for long periods causes immense pain and sometimes once I do sit down I can’t get back up, the pain in my knees causes them to collapse. So we are limited in that sense on what job we can take. But then is the fibro fog there to make any job complicated beyond measure.

It is variable. I can walk an hour one day, with pain, but not extreme pain. The next week I walk 15 minutes and it is extreme pain.

Every single thing we do hurts. Everything has a cost and a consequence to it. Related posts:

100 symptoms of fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia and sleep

Brain fog, cognitive dysfunction, and fibromyalgia

Allodynia and fibromyalgia

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“I have been given this product as part of a product review process. Although the product was a gift, all opinions in this review remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company. ”

The Benepod is a really neat little device for pain management.

Just a wee thing, but effective. It is both a Hot and Cold treatment applied simultaneously. I like to say it jangles the pain receptors up and halts the pain. But really it is a therapy called thermal grill illusion. And what happens is that your nerve receptors can’t quite get a handle on both a hot and cold stimulus, which then creates an alternate sensation to diminish or even get rid of the pain in that location for a time.

It is used for:
  • Neck pain
  • Knee pain
  • Arthritis of the hands
  • Headaches
  • And the musculoskeletal related pain
My experience with the Benepod

I personally am using it for knee pain due to fibromyalgia and hypermobility syndrome and hand pain (Possible arthritis pain). It worked exceptionally well on the hands. I ache so much in them and in the morning, well, it is hard and extremely painful to make a fist. But if I use my hands for anything it will get a deep ache in there. This actually stops the pain for a duration. A welcome relief for sure. On knee pain it was more a dulling of the pain there, but better than it usually is. And I like to use it for that area, and others, at night to help me sleep. I was also using it for tension headaches on my temples and jaw. I have TMJ and that causes headaches when I don’t have a migraine. It was very soothing in that area for the muscles. Likewise for my migraine related neck pain.

It runs on a 20-minute cycle. But if you need more, for another location, then you just unplug and plug back in for another go. And when it starts you just move it around slowly on that area.

Perks:
  • Non-invasive
  • Drug-free
  • Only $99 dollars on Amazon. Which is better than a lot of pain devices out there.
  • Small and light. So this is something you can bring with you to places with ease.
  • Shuts off automatically after its 20-min cycle.
  • Relieves or dims pain for a duration
  • Great for in conjunction with your usual pain management strategies
Cons:
  • It does need to be plugged in to use. So not as portable as some pain devices. But compatible with portable USB charging devices.
  • It is what I call an active device, rather than passive. Some devices are passive; you don’t feel them and you just leave it there to do its thing. This is active in the sense that you can feel it working (that is a good thing really) but you have to actively move it around. You can’t just leave it be as it wouldn’t really be effective that way.

It utilizes a USB port to operate, so it is compatible with most USB devices. Like a power pack for your cell. And comes with a converter to plug directly into an outlet. I liked to use it at my computer desk. Just a convenient spot for me and it just plugs into the computer.

The Benepod isn’t a cure or for long-term treatment, but it does dim or relieve pain in that area for a spell. It has been a real relief for my hands, for sure. It works really well for my pain there. And because I can’t take NSAIDs, I have limited options to treat that at all. And also on this nasty aching pain, I have been getting in my ankles. Worked exceptionally well in that location too. For other areas, it definitely decreased the pain, but not eliminated it.  It is a good solid product to help with overall pain management. I will continue to use it with my other pain management strategies.

You can find it to purchase on Amazon for $99 dollars.

Other recent product reviews:

Battle Balm

Oska Pulse

FibroCane supplements

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It is fibromyalgia awareness month once again. Remember fibromyalgia awareness day fall on May 12th.

I’d like to start the month with a little fibromyalgia humor. Sadly, it is also all true.

When you have fibromyalgia Sleep is a delicious nectar of the gods that is denied you Too much sleep? That’s a flare The last time you had no pain it was before the Big Bang Doing a thing? That’s a flare You have to stay within your limits. Those limits change every day. It is a fun game we play called accidentally causing a flare from something you did just last week Moving your body? That’s a flare You get so fatigued you wonder if you need a nap, another nap to compound the nap you took, or just melt into a puddle of motivationless goo as the fatigue drags you down. Existence? That’s a flare Your mind is pudding and you have no idea if a sentence is going to come out of your mouth or just garbled nonsense. Not that it matters you don’t even remember the name of the dude you are talking to. IBS? That’s an extra bonus flare Your words don’t word Your memory is great but insanely short Your sense of your body is what areas hurt more than the other areas Also don’t do the Hokey Pokey Other humor on chronic pain

When people doubt

That’s a flare

What triggers a flare

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