If you are looking for reasons why you may be “always sick and tired”, this isn’t the page for you. Try Why Am I Always Sick? – 13 Reasons You Are Always Sick & Tired.
However, if you want to learn about my various illnesses and ailments, this is the page you want to read.
Why am I always sick and tired? It sucks!
The Nose Knows…Nothing
Lucky me…I was born with an allergic constitution, as my mother before me, and her mother before her. As a friend of mine has stated time and again, I am “allergic to the world”, and if you ever see my back after an allergy test, well, let’s just say my back is on fire!
I’m allergic to the flowers in your garden…and the trees…and the freshly cut grass… Well, let’s face it…I’m not out hugging trees.
I’m allergic to the dust inside of my house.
I’m allergic to the cigarette you puff at the entrance of a building (by the way, stop that, it’s really rude!).
I’m allergic to your sweet, adorable, furry little friend who insists on climbing into my lap. Yes, all of your furry friends will whip my allergies into a frenzy. My eyes will water, I will start to sneeze (and wheeze), and my skin will begin to itch like I have little allergy tyrants crawling all over my skin. They’re microscopic. You can’t see them, but they are there.
Sometimes, I will have an attack for seemingly no reason what-so-ever. Like I said…allergic to the world.
Currently taking: Zyrtec and Flonase (daily) and Benadryl (as needed).
It’s Getting Harder and Harder to Breathe
Asthma reared its ugly head in my early 20s. It picked a very inconvenient time to do it. I was pregnant with my first child.
My asthma is triggered by all the above allergens. When my allergies act up, my asthma will often follow. Although, sometimes, it’s just the asthma.
During my pregnancy, I tried to be a good mom and cut back on the medications I was taking. As a result, I started having asthma symptoms and found myself in the ER the day after Christmas. My husband drove me in a snow storm to the hospital where I received my very first breathing treatment via Nebulizer. I was prescribed a rescue inhaler (I needed to be rescued several times a day), and put on a course of Prednisone. Naturally, I wasn’t happy about taking steroids during pregnancy, but breathing is a good thing.
Currently Taking: Albuterol Inhaler as needed
Death By Peanut
My first pregnancy brought with it asthma, and my second gave me food allergies. After having my second child, I suddenly started reacting to foods. I never had a food allergy (minus a short lived dairy allergy as a baby that I quickly outgrew), so this was quite a shock and a major annoyance.
Here is a list of foods that can kill me:
Am I forgetting anything?
Eating at restaurants has become a challenge. If your restaurant doesn’t have a food allergy menu, you will not find me there. Let’s just say, I eat at Chili’s…a lot.
Currently Taking: Benadryl and Epinephrine (adrenaline, epi-pen) as needed.
I’ve always had stomach problems. It used to stem from stress, but not it stems from food. I’m talking about Acid Reflux, and it is one of the most agonizing conditions I’ve ever had. It often creeps up without warning.
It begins with a horrible itching in the ears. My first thought is usually, “What’s in my food that I’m allergic to?”, but then I quickly realize that it’s acid reflux when I feel the bubbling pressure in my stomach, chest, and throat. I’m often found groaning and breathing in bed, like a woman in labor, until the symptoms subside. TUMS isn’t helpful…not at all.
I took a medication for this problem, but it only caused me to have crippling stomach cramps. I literally fell to the floor in agonizing pain.
The best treatment for me is to avoid foods that cause me problems. If I’m having many episodes of this, I will start drinking a hot cup of water mixed with lemon juice before meals. It’s not pleasant, but I prefer it to the alternative.
I’m Freaking Out, Man!
On top of it all, I also have an anxiety disorder. I have had problems with anxiety and depression since I was a teenager, but in recent years it got so bad that I found myself in the emergency room frequently. Make no mistake, anxiety / panic disorders are very real. I was diagnosed with something called Dysthymia. My symptoms vary in severity and type. Sometimes I just start to freak out. Other times, my mind is racing so badly that I can’t get anything accomplished. Other times, if the freak out is severe or the constant worrying is prolonged, I will begin to have physical symptoms such as tongue and throat swelling. I have to take a step back and ask myself if it’s a food allergy or anxiety and stress.
When I was in and out of the ER, we thought it was food allergies. Naturally, they injected me with Benadryl and Epinephrine, and prescribed Prednisone. LOL Yeah…do you know the side effects of these drugs?
Benadryl can cause excitability. Oh, yes, that was helpful.
Epinephrine is adrenaline – a great addition to a panic attack already in progress.
Prednisone is a steroid. Need I say more?
Unfortunately, I will require these medications from time to time due to my allergies and asthma. I hate using my inhaler, also a steroid, because it makes me jittery and causes my mind to race. Basically, the treatment for one ailment causes symptoms of the other. Go figure.
Currently Taking: Prozac
They Love Me!
In addition to all of the above, or perhaps because of all of the above, I catch just about everything that sweeps through. I think I catch a cold every month or two, especially now that my oldest child is in school.
Speaking of my children, they have had the fortunate experience of inheriting many of these ailments.
My oldest son has environmental allergies we haven’t pinpointed yet, although his symptoms seem controlled by the Zyrtec. He also has peanut, tree nut and egg allergies. No asthma, although he had bronchospasm with the last virus we all caught and used an inhaler for it. I suspect he is allergic to cats as well.
My youngest son has environmental allergies. We recently discovered that pollen is one of them. The poor child recently got diagnosed with asthma. He has a rescue inhaler and a preventive one. He is currently on his 3rd course of prelone in a month and a half and is currently averaging 1 ER visit per month for asthma and food allergies. In addition to being allergic to peanuts and tree nuts, he is also allergic to dairy products. He gets hives, starts coughing, and has itchy eyes, ears, and nose. He’ll sneeze a lot as well, and sometimes he will start wheezing.
I also suspect he’s allergic to eggs.
My husband? He’s allergy free. It’s so unfair.
Managing My Life
Sometimes having all of these ailments can be stressful, but I often find that I must have a sense of humor about it if I’m to survive. However, lately, we’ve all been so sick so much, I’ve finally had enough. We’re all so drugged up and still can’t go outside because of the wind and pollen count. I had to leave a playground with my children recently because my asthma was acting up. That was the last straw for me. So I am now on a quest to get healthier and control, prevent, or even cure my allergies, asthma, acid reflux and anxiety (what’s with all the A’s)?
That is why I have started this blog. It will help me take this one step at a time while getting help and advice from others reading my blog. Perhaps my findings will also help others. I hope so.
I look forward to getting to know all of my readers, and I hope we can get a great dialogue going on how to treat, prevent and cure the diseases that ail us.
Hopefully we can help each other answer the burning question: “Why Am I Always Sick and Tired?”
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