To My Relapsing MS Friends
It is obvious to anyone living with Multiple Sclerosis that it is "that" time of year again. With the change of seasons comes the change with our MS and yet another wild adventure into the unknown world of what's happening now.
It is no doubt common knowledge to other "hubbers" but for those who perhaps read these articles without necessarily writing any of your own,Hubpages allows its users to check on the readership of each published hub. While specific ID's are not made beyond the search engine information associated with Adsense, a daily chart of readers is readily available for hubbers to check.
That said, I have noticed a specific trend when it comes to the seasonal changes occurring throughout the year. The most popular hubs about MS are the ones I have written about my steroid treatments. The numbers are not high, but are consistent in views per day. When I notice an upward trend developing it catches my attention and I check the daily views more carefully.
Now that I have been here on Hubpages for well over a year, I know the upward climbs represent an increase in relapses. As is often the case when we relapse we look for information to soothe ourselves or to empower ourselves through the knowledge and experience of others.
Well, here it is, finally autumn seems to have arrived and before we can get settled into normal temperature adjustments we have to come face-to-face with seasonal flare-ups. What a bummer!
October/November Will I Flare?
So to all my MS family who may be relapsing right now, you are in my thoughts. I know it is an especially rough time for parents who have children beginning another school year. Yet whether or not there are children directly involved, seasonal flare-ups are a bear and it takes an entirely different mindset to make it through.
Back in the day, it seemed I would have a major flare-up every single October or November regardless of how well I was feeling or how good I was doing. I remember one year in particular when I made it all the way to the very last day of November and had a major attack. I was shocked and mad and hurt all at the same time.
Since those good old days, I don't seem to experience a massive attack anymore. Not that I don't feel a definite drop in my overall condition with the arrival of fall, just that my body doesn't seem to launch a major attack on me any more.
Still, those who are flaring up with regularity have my deepest sympathy. I empathize with what is happening to you and I am wishing you all a speedy recovery in the very near future.
Do What You Have To Do
It is important whether new to MS or not, to heed your body's signals and try to learn to ride out the flare-up as efficiently as possible. Newbies learn they cannot will an attack into submission. It will get you before you get it, if you don't admit a flare-up is happening.
I remember the doubts of whether or not a flare-up was really occurring. If you've ruled out the possibility of a pseudo flare-up, then you might as well accept the fact that it is no doubt happening. I never ran to my neurologist with every little problem. However I did finally learn that symptoms lasting more than 48 hours needed my undivided attention.Not that a visit to the neurologist is always necessary, just that we should pay attention to our bodies.
Depending on whether or not you are working, you might be able to delay the inevitable visit, hoping to recover on your own. However, if you are working and flaring chances are the exacerbation will need some assistance before it clears up.
To Steroid or Not to Steroid . . . that is the question
I know you don't want to be bothered with steroids; I totally understand why you are resisting. I hope you can hold out and let your body heal itself, but dependent upon how much you are suffering, you just might have to reach out for some help. This time of the year is one of the busiest for neurologists so calling for an appointment will already be more difficult than usual. Keep that in mind as you hesitate to make your necessary appointment. Seems to me we procrastinators all wait until the end of the week or the very beginning of the week to seek help.
For me, I waited in hopes the weekend would make a difference, telling myself I would feel better by the following Monday. Or if my problems started on Monday I would wait until the end of the week, telling myself I just needed a couple of days of rest.
While this might very well be the case in some instances, if you are flaring at the same time every year and you have had MS longer than a year, your gut instinct is probably telling you to call your neurologist. Listen to your gut and make the call. Suffering any longer than is absolutely necessary is too high of a price to pay.
Some Attacks Are More Dangerous Than Others
While there are those of us who can ride through flare-ups of dizziness or fatigue, other types of flare-ups should not be ignored.
- Choking or Coughing
- Inability to walk or stand
- Loss of arm strength
Listed above are just a couple of examples of dangerous situations that could lead to serious complications. For the record these are the attacks that get my undivided attention down to this day. Don't take them lightly or view them as problems that can be overcome with time. So often that is just not the case.
If the steroid roller coaster is in your future, my heart goes out to you. Don't worry you will get through this one too, even if it is totally new symptoms you find yourself dealing with. Meanwhile listen to your body, take care of yourself and hopefully you will be up and about again soon.
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