Friday, November 23, 2012

Hello Again

Its been a crazy year - started a new job, lost new job, start new job. Sliced a tendon in my finger, right through the joint capsule.

Let me tell you something - when you do that kind of damage to your hand (1) go the hospital (2) yes, having fibro makes it much worse. BUT it has taught me a few things:

  1. Get medical attention immediately for deep cuts no matter where they are (or no matter how many times you've done it.) Trust me, I get a serious cut at least once a year from cooking...or a burn but if you have to physically pull out the thing that cut you, or you see BONE or you begin blistering - medical attention!
  2. Find what helps make it better other than just pain pills. For me, slight pressure did so I splinted it
  3. Don't try to push too hard too fast. You don't want and joints to get stiff, but don't reopen you wounds either
  4. Listen to your doctor - they do know what they're talking about when it comes to these kinds of injuries, even if they don't understand your fibro
  5. MAKE SURE ALL LIDS ARE COMPLETELY OFF THE CAN BEFORE EMPTYING IT - yeah I thought I could be careful too. Now I have a pointer finger on my dominant hand that is about 50% functional. Don't inflict more pain on your fibro.
Best wishes dear readers, it's good to be back!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Out of Control

Recently I've been dealing with feelings of loss of control. The pain, fatigue, aches, etc have been driving me nuts. I feel like I've lost any semblance of control over my body. It was starting to drag me into a depression. Knowing that depression can worsen the symptoms, I realized I had to do something to pick myself up before I got in too deep. But what?

I decided to get a tattoo and two anchor piercings.


The tattoo is my Zodiac sign, wrapped with a vine. As usual, my skin was unhappy with the intrusion of the needle and ink, but its healing well. The pain has mostly subsided, and it helped lift my spirits.


These anchor piercings, also known as microdermal implants, are actually not as painful as I was expecting. So what is this kind of piercing?
...can be placed practically anywhere on the surface of the skin on the body, but are different from conventionalpiercings in that they are composed of two components: an anchor, which is implanted underneath the skin, with a step protruding from (or flush with) the surface of the surrounding skin, and the interchangeable jewellery, which is screwed into the threaded hole in the step of the anchor. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microdermal_implants)

The insertion of the implant is actually closer to a slight pinch, and is much less painful than ear cartilage piercing or navel piercing (I have tried both, neither healed properly).

Monday, June 11, 2012

Water is Your Friend

We've already discussed in previous posts how a hot bath with epsom salts and/or essential oils can be very soothing to sore and tired muscles. Water can also be very helpful when trying to exercise. Water lightens the weight of our bodies, making the pressure on our knee and ankle joints lighter, and making it easier to exercise.

Check your local gym or YMCA to see if they offer any water aerobics exercises, or any water based classes for people suffering from arthritis. Many people with fibromyalgia find the lighter load helps them stretch and move more easily. Of course, speak with your doctor before starting a new exercise regimen.

Other things to be careful of:

  1. Asthma sufferers - if the pool is indoors, the humidity may exasperate your asthma. Speak with your doctor and see if you can tour the gym, including the pool area before joining a class
  2. Chlorine allergies - see what chemicals are used to keep the pool clean. Some clubs use bromine instead of chlorine. Don't put yourself at risk.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Losing Weight When Exercise Is Hard

Most of us would love to lost a few extra pounds, but as is often the case for those of us with Fibromyalgia, its hard to move around and exercise is often out of the question. A few simple changes in diet can be a big help however.


  1. Cut the corn syrup out. Regardless of what the corn farmers want you to think, your body does not break down corn syrup in the same way it breaks down the natural sugars in fruits and vegetables.
  2. Increase your intake of fruits and veggies - they not only have important vitamins and minerals, but you're body can more easily break down the sugars in them.
  3. Decrease your intake of processed foods. Try to get foods that don't have preservatives, and buy organic whenever possible.
  4. Try to increase your intake of sprouted grain bread and pastas. They're low glycemic index with no preservatives.
  5. Keep your protein intake of the lean variety. Chicken, talapia, tuna.
  6. Avoid heavy sauces. Spice rubs can keep your foods tasting delicious while avoiding high calories associated with sauces.
  7. Grill! Grill! Grill! Grilling can keep meat and fish moist while avoiding the extra calories of frying.
  8. Walk whenever you can. Even a slow walk can help get your metabolism going.



Friday, May 25, 2012

Treating Pain Naturally

One of the best ways to treat pain without taking medicine is - baths. With the correct additives to your bath water, even soaking for as little as 15 minutes can have great effects on your body and mind.

Spearmint, lavender, eucalyptus, and bath (epsom) salts can all make a huge difference in how you feel. You make your own scented bath salts at home. You can also buy them at most drug stores. (My favorite brand is Dr. Teal’s).

To use them, fill the tub with water as hot as you can stand without burning yourself, and mix in ½ cup bath salts. Soak for 15-30 minutes, and play some soothing music in the background. Lower the lights if possible. Just let yourself go, and let the water wash away the stress.

To make your own bath salts, follow the instructions below. (These also make great easy gifts. They’ve been a big hit with my friends in the past, since I can use their favorite perfumes).

Make Your Own Soothing Bath Salts
You will need:
  • Unscented bath salts
  • A plastic container with lid that is not used for food
  • Essential oils (lavender, mint, anything you find relaxing, a favorite perfume that is oil not water based)
  • Food coloring (water based)
  • Decorative containers

Instructions:
  1. Fill the plastic container halfway with bath salts
  2. Put 10-12 drops of oil or perfume in with the bath salts
  3. Add 2-3 drops water based food coloring (no more or you will color your skin and tub when you use them)
  4. Cover tightly
  5. Shake for 1-2 minutes until oil is evenly distributed throughout the salts
  6. Put the salts into a decorative container, and if you wish make multiple kinds, each with its own color so you can distinguish the salts from one another
  7. Enjoy in a relaxing bath  :)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Traveling with Fibromyalgia

This weekend we decided to travel to NYC to visit my relatives for the holidays. Here are a few things to keep in mind when traveling:

1. Take frequent rest stops when traveling by car. I try to stop and walk around at least every two hours to avoid getting too stiff

2. Try to stick to your routine as much as possible. Nothing can cause pain and fatigue spikes like skipping medicine, naps, and meals

3. Pack healthy snacks you enjoy. This makes it less necessary to stick to your meal schedule. Dried fruit, rice cakes, flavored sparkling water, carrot and celery sticks are some of my personal favorites

4. Know your limits. Plan out your day but don't try to stretch yourself too thin. Visit people, but see if they can meet you close to where you are staying too

5. Don't be afraid to schedule naps. Naps can help refresh you so that you can be happy and have more energy for visiting

6. Steer clear of anyone sick, even if its just a cold. Fibromyalgia + travel = unusual stress on your body AND immune system. You don't want to catch something worse

7. Make sure people know your limits. Explain to them simply but nicely. 'I'd really like to go sightseeing, but I have the family Christmas party later and I want to make sure I have plenty of energy for it. Maybe we could do it another day.'

8. Make sure you have enough recovery time when you get home. Don't try to rush back into things. If you do have to go right back to work, see if you can work a partial say or two to ease back in.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Casserole Mash

Casseroles are fairly easy to make. You just need a pan big enough to hold everything, and you can relax while its cooking. They can also contain all the basics of a square meal, and reheat well.


Thanksgiving Casserole Mash


Ingredients

  • Leftover stuffing
  • Leftover mashed potatoes or sweet potato pie filling
  • Any leftover veggies, including green bean casserole, roasted potatoes, creamed corn
  • Leftover gravy
  • Pam or Crisco to grease pan
Directions
  1. Grease a pan large enough to hold the leftovers you have
  2. Place all leftover stuffing in the bottom of the pan, spread it evenly
  3. Layer all leftover vegetables on top of stuffing
  4. Cover with mashed potatoes or sweet potato pie filling
  5. Heat oven to 350 degrees and cook for 20-30 minutes until center is hot
  6. Heat gravy in the microwave or in a small saucepan while casserole cools slightly
  7. Pour gravy over individual servings and serve