Springtime flare-ups

Flexecif

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Who's experiencing some flare-ups due to the change of weather/season? Spring used to be my favorite season but since some symptoms comes along with it, I don't look forward to it that much anymore.
 

bblack4jc

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I think that I am. However I began having signs back in January so I am not sure if it is allergies or not. I had this last year at the same time and it usually lasts for 3-4 months.
 

djhsix

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I had a flare this week, but I think it's from stress and a bad night's sleep. However, I've often wondered if my really bad flares are due to seasonal changes. When I was living in Fairbanks, AK, I would get really bad flares starting in May and lasting until August-September. My flares have been pretty minor since moving to Seattle, WA, and occur at different times of the year than when I was in Fairbanks. I'll have to keep an eye on that.
 

Flexecif

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Stress is really a trigger, always is. I read that the temperature/climate has something to do with the flareups, but perhaps it differs from individual to individual. I just wish I enjoyed this time of the year when I was still able to. Now, it's getting harder and harder each year. But still, I have to be positive. Better days are coming.
 

sunkacola

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Stress is a really hard one. Stress immediately causes all my bad fibro symptoms to increase, and can also cause anxiety or panic attacks. It's impossible to avoid all stress, so what I focus on is doing my best to calm it down when it does appear, and cutting from my life the things that cause me stress if I don't need those things or people.

Actually, I bought a pulse-oximeter, and I have found it helpful. When my pulse starts going up from stress I put it on my finger and turn the situation into a sort of game. I take deep breaths and try to get the numbers to go down.
This doesn't always work of course. But sometimes it has helped.
 

JayCS

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My acupressurist is always on about environmental influences like weather, seasonal changes and full moon. ;-)
I usually find more direct triggers. But these can be being in the cold too long and especially wind. It wdn't be the spring itself that flares me, it'd be the sun and light attracting others and me to go outside, not finding exactly what the right clothing is etc. Like the other day wanting to catch a lot of sun on our balcony, but getting a flare-up from too much wind in the process...
 

Affinity

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Personally I am really sensitive to the weather, both heat and humidity, and so I have to be really careful and conscientious when weather is changing. I am in Texas so it's already pretty warm here and the seasonal allergies are another trigger, too.
 

Bambi

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The spring has always been difficult for me. As a child, I lived in South Texas and had a lot of allergies. Our schools were not air conditioned back then and I often was just miserable. As an adult, I do not do well in the spring. I am now 66 and ironically the only spring where I didn't feel super anxious, depressed and generally worse in my symptoms was last year . Given all that was going on, I think that for me as a person who doesn't mind being at home, maybe the reduced social pressure of quarantine actually helped me . I find that rather strange but want to take some lessons away from that. I evidently thrive on not having as active a social calendar or obligations . I am retired and 66 so I am no longer working and didn't have the economic stress that many were and are suffering. I have a loving husband who I enjoy being around and we were in a "bubble" with our only daughter, son-in-law and grandson (they work from home). This spring, I am a mess. In times of uncertainty, I never do as well and I have had some stress with my Texas sister who at 73 is bubbling with energy and their first response to being vaccinated was to head to Las Vegas and then wanted to come to Colorado to see us. At the time, we were still being very careful so I had to say no and that has led to her being angry . I react to that kind of stress big time, internalize other's feelings and feel guilty for everything around me, and I am sure that is part of why I am such a mess right not. Everything hurts, my digestion is messed up, I can't sleep well due to restless legs and pain, I worry constantly about everything (this often happens to me in the spring). A lot of negative things have happened in my life in later March and April so that does not help (husband's cancer diagnosis, losing people, etc) . When May comes around here and we get thunderstorms, I often have found that increases my pain. I am sick of this!
By the way, has anyone else heard the ads on the radio for the FM test and trial? I signed up for it but I wonder if my age will exclude me. It's at myfmtest.com. I feel pretty desperate most days. I started online therapy to try to deal with my out of control anxiety but so far I still have this tight chest, headache, stiff neck thing going on.
 

sunkacola

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Hi Bambi, Sorry to hear of your sister's lack of understanding and compassion. In my opinion she had no call to be angry with you for making reasonable boundaries in order to keep yourself safe. A vaccinated person can still pass on the virus if they come into contact with it and of all places, surely Vegas with it's constantly changing international crowds of people would be a great place to pick it up and pass it along.

Please remember that worrying about things or allowing the stress to build up is only hurting you and cannot do anything positive. Do what you can to mitigate the stress. Research ways of stress reduction and try everything until something works! The most important thing is to take good care of yourself.

Please be ware of things like that "FM test" online. It is very likely to be a scam, only trying to get your money and not likely to be of any help to you.

I wish you good luck with finding ways to de-stress. I can't exaggerate how important this is.
 

JayCS

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This FM/a-test claims to be very accurate (the % they mention varies...). It measures proteins called cytokines & chemokines. Problem is this is a very idiosyncratic hypothesis, not as yet proven by studies. The background of the people behind it seems to me to be it a bit dubious. Lastly they originally claimed to be developing a vaccine for it, based on their hypothesis. Thankfully at least they've dropped this last claim... Nothing could get me to do anything with these people after reading their side of things, checking on their claims and what the other side says about them. I won't say scam. Praps cytokines will someday be a diagnostic help. But it isn't. And other docs aren't taking this particularly seriously.
OTOH this test (by EpicGenetics) is apparently Medicovered or has been in the past, so it can't be completely off...

The research I can find on pubmed:
"Fibromyalgia and cytokines" 2014, Current evidence suggests that cytokines and especially chemokines may have a role in the pathogenesis of this syndrome. Cytokines are small soluble factors that work as immune system messengers. They can be classified as pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines. Chemokines are a special kind of pro-inflammatory cytokines that guide the movement of circulating mononuclear cells to the injured side. Some pro-inflammatory cytokine levels (i.e. IL-1RA, IL-6, and IL-8) and, recently, some chemokines' levels have been found to be increased in patients with fibromyalgia. Thus, herein we review the current knowledge regarding the role of cytokines in fibromyalgia patients and their possible clinical relevance.
"Low-grade chronic inflammation mediated by mast cells in fibromyalgia: role of IL-37": Mast cells are involved in FM by releasing proinflammatory cytokines, chemokines, chemical mediators, and PGD2. Ah, I'd heard of mast cells before.
Interesting to me cos of my whole-body cryotherapy is this one: Serial whole-body cryotherapy in fibromyalgia is effective and alters cytokine profiles" - very new: Adv Rheumatol. 2021 Jan 13;61(1):3.
OK - if it's gonna make you try whole-body cryotherapy, like me, I'm with ya.. (y)😜
 
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