Trigger Point Pain

trigger-points-in-fibromyalgia

Trigger Point Chart

If you have fibromyalgia, you’ve heard the term trigger point. Trigger points are the 18 spots on your body that are painful when pressed. I look at the chart of where they are and I have tenderness in most of those areas, but the top of my trapezius muscles (located on the upper back where the shoulder meets the neck) get so tight that it brings on a migraine.

Actually when I read about it online, they often call them tension headaches when they start with knotted muscles. It’s like the chicken and the egg. Do the knots start the migraine or does the migraine cause the knots? I just don’t have that answer, but what I do know is, the top of my right shoulder all the up to the base of my skull on the right side is so tight and I can’t get much relief from anything I’ve tried.

I took a muscle relaxer an hour ago and some Alleve a few hours before that. I tried a hot bath and light stretching, but I’m still here unable to see out of my right eye from the pain. This is blogging dedication, my friends. Tonight I’m blogging with one eye open.

I have one of those portable tens units. First I bought one at Target and I found it to be very helpful in loosening the tight muscle but also relieving some of the pain. I have since upgraded to a model with much more oomph! I only need to turn it on low to have an impact.

The unit runs for 30 minute sessions and has a bunch of different settings. I’ve had it going on different settings for 4 consecutive sessions. My neck is still tight, but the vibrations from the unit are enough to mask the pain quite a bit and ultimately my muscles do loosen up from it.

I’m not sure if I’m supposed to use it for this length of time, but right now, it’s the only thing helping and I can’t see what harm it can do.

People who don’t get migraines have no idea how bad they can be. I love the people that ask if I’ve tried Advil or Alleve for relief. I do use those but they barely take the edge off.

Lately I feel like my headaches are more frequent and I’m not sure if it’s the weather pattern, hormones, stress, or something else, but it’s hell. I have my peppermint essential oil (yes, people still mock me for using those, but if it helps even a little, with a headache this bad, you try it).

It sounds weird but having a migraine is a very lonely feeling on top of painful. I feel very isolated from the people I love or from doing things I enjoy. There’s no easy way to explain to your kids how bad a migraine is. I remember when I was a child, my best friend’s mom used to get migraines. When we’d sing and get loud she’d yell, “I have a migraine” and I ¬†thought she was just trying to shut us up. Little did I know how much we were probably annoying her and making her headache far worse.

Tonight I’m frustrated with my headache because it’s not going away. Today is day 2 and I just want to go to sleep and wake up headache free. I’ll say a little prayer, but I’m not getting my hopes up.

Until tomorrow…

 

Advertisements

Irrational Fear

images-2

I don’t know whether it’s listening to all the news stories or terrorism, hate, and violence, but I’m becoming more and fearful of even normal things. I’m not sure it’s at the “I need a psychiatrist STAT” mode, but it’s enough that I check in with my kids a lot, I look around nervously when we’re in a crowd, and I lie in bed at need creating terrible scenarios in my head.

I guess I’m wondering how many people are dealing with similar issues. I don’t think I’m alone. These are scary times. I don’t want to get into a political debate but the current turmoil in our country is not helping.

If you take one look at Facebook you’ll scroll past people bashing President Trump followed by people saying horrendous things about “Libtards.” I’m wondering where we want wrong that the two sides are so far apart that we don’t even listen anymore.

I’m of the believe that 15% of the people on each side are extreme and the other 70% of us fall somewhere in the middle. While we may not agree or like Trump, we’re not pretending he isn’t president. Or while we may have strong beliefs about abortion, that doesn’t mean we can’t find common ground on other issues.

I don’t know about you, but I’m not seeing any of that at all. There’s not much in between, even at a local level. I have previously discussed the nightmare of politics in my small town. I won’t rehash it all as it’s been two years but when I attended a meeting this past week and realized things haven’t changed all that much.If thing scan’t change in a small town with so many people working for the betterment of schools and the community, how can we do it on a larger scale in the country?

But it’s not just politics that are causing my fear. I’ll be driving down the road and fear one of my cats got out and eaten by a bobcat. Or I get a strong feeling on our boat that it’s going to crash.

At the moment, I’m not stopping myself from doing things, but I’m also pretty okay staying home if I don’t need to go anywhere. I guess one could say these are irrational fears, but then I start to think, are they? There are people murdered every day. There is human trafficking, kidnapping, and so many other horrifying things going on and I’m here in my bubble.

I know enough psychology to know that my fears stem from losing people I love early in life and then again when I was a grown up. I’m afraid that something will happen to my kids and I won’t be there to protect them. How do you balance letting them grow up and holding on for dear life.

My kids are my everything. They are three very different little (not so little) human beings. My son is starting high school and I keep thinking I only have 4 more years with him at home. I’m NOT ready!

I’m not going to be a good empty-nester. I’ll be one of those women with 30 cats an a few dogs. I need to mother something! In the meantime, I need to find a way to push back the irrational (or even rational) fears standing in my way. I’m not afraid to say I’m scared. I just need to figure out some sort of plan of action (other than Xanax) when I’m a mess.

I’ll work on that. If you have better ideas, I’m happy to hear them!