This is always such a fun topic, however, as it is probably going to come up in most of my entries I think it’s best to give you all a brief breakdown of what health conditions I have. I’m going to start by saying that I’ve never been one for being ashamed of my health conditions, or believing that I shouldn’t speak about them. I am open about them, they are a big part of who I am whether I like it or not, and so I expect others to deal with them – after all, it’s me that has to deal with them 24/7. I am particularly outspoken about people being ignorant to invisible illnesses; the health conditions that give no physical sign.
So now I guess it’s time to name them all;
Hyper Mobility Syndrome
“Hypermobility Syndrome is a connective tissue disorder. Symptoms often start in childhood and continue into adult life, they include; joints that are less stable and may dislocate, an increased tendency to sprains and strains, fatigue, long term pain and stretchy skin. They may experience difficult with gripping, writing, unlocking doors etc. and staying in one position for too long may increase their pain. Their mobility may be impaired.”
“Connective tissue proteins such as collagen give the body its intrinsic toughness. When they are differently formed, the results are mainly felt in the “moving parts” – the joints, muscles, tendons, ligaments – which are laxer and more fragile than is the case for most people. The result is joint laxity with hypermobility and with it comes vulnerability to the effects of injury.”
What does this all mean? Pain, lots and lots of pain. Usually it is controlled with my normal pain medication which I’m on 24/7. Occasionally I get a bad flare up, usually every 6 months or so, and it is agonizing. The last one took weeks and weeks to settle down and only with the help of morphine-like painkillers. Standing for long periods of time hurts, as does walking for more than five minutes without a break. I regularly pull muscles, sprain muscles and walk into objects. I bruise very easily and I’m frequently covered in them.
I am very fortunate to have found an amazing physiotherapist at The Physio Centres in Glasgow. After 8 years of pain, and no long term help from NHS physios, I came out of my first appointment pain free. I don’t think I can remember a time prior to then that I had felt like that. Using a mixture of pilates and releasing techniques she has helped me build my body up and make progress.
Hypermobility Syndrome is the biggest pain in my ass, however, that is only one reason why it gets a section devoted to itself and the others get lumped together here. The other reasons are that the rest of these at least one or two people have heard of before, and I’m not too keen to talk about them as much as they’re more of a personal nature.
I have asthma although it is only mild, it tends more to be a bother during the hayfever or when I’m ill. I tend to get ill more than most people, and when I catch a cold it totally floors me. Thankfully I avoid the flu by having the flu vaccine every autumn. Then there is rhinitis which is the inflammation of the nasal passage. So sinus pain, constant pressure and a running nose.
I also suffer from migraines, which tend to pop up whenever they feel like it. I’m currently working out with my doctor a decent balance of medication to properly control them. On top of that I have irritable bowel syndrome which is not fun, and other than my hypermobility syndrome this causes me the most hassle.
Lastly I suffer from depression, which considering all of the above isn’t really that much of a surprise, but it took me a while to be able to look at it that way. It’s something that is always going to be with me, some days are easier than others, while some I’m constantly fighting a never-ending battle. I’ve had counselling over the years and I’m not medication for it, so it is fairly under control.
So there you go, a run down on what plagues me. I hope that this little peak into my health helps you to understand why I chose to write about it, and why it will feature heavily in this blog.