Managing FM On A Low Budget?

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xXcenobiteXx
New Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 5/7/2009 12:47 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm 21 years old and was just finally diagnosed about 2 weeks ago.  The symptoms started probably around 10 years old.  The doctors would just say things like, "She's experiencing growing pains" and "Her eyes are having difficulty focussing under the fleurescent lighting.  They need to adjust."  All these years I thought I had a number of different ailments.  The last couple of years the pain started to get worse and it was like every other symptom just hit me all at once.  I had many, many tests done in the last 2 years, every one coming back normal.  My body feels much older than it should.  I have to pull myself up the railing to get to my bedroom.  I must say I was relieved to have a diagnosis, but a little disappointed at the same time because I was on a venture to be cured of my chronic pain.
I'm on a trial run of a tricylclic antidepressant that's supposed to help with chronic pain disorders and sleep disturbances.  So far, I don't feel the slightest bit better.  I changed my diet, quit smoking and do pilates every morning but nothing seems to make a difference.  I work 2 jobs to support myself and needless to say, it's killing me.  My Dr. thinks I'm over working but I don't have much of a choice... and going on disability is a last resort.  Can anyone suggest some exercises or something that helps them get through the day?  It would be much appreciated!

Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17101
   Posted 5/7/2009 2:26 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi, Cenobite, and welcome!  Oh, isn't fibromyalgia a lot of fun?  You are so young to have it.  I was 40 when it hit me.
 
I take ibuprofen with food and extra strength Tylenol for my pain.  I  take malic acid/magnesium supplements for pain and fatigue.  I also take Vitamin D.  Many with fibromyalgia are deficient in vitamin D and malic acid and magnesium and this can cause some pain and fatigue.  All of these are quite inexpensive so that would be good for you.  Be sure to talk to your doctor about it first.  I did.  My doctor didn't think malic acid/magnesium would help me but he said it wouldn't hurt me so I tried it.  It did help me quite a bit.
 
Be sure to check out the Fibro 101 thread...the second thread on the forum.  There are links to good information about fibro, including a link all about malic acid/magnesium supplements and how they work in  your body.  There also is a link to good stretching exercises that really do help.
 
It's important to keep moving.  If you sit or lay too long you will be stiff as a board.  Light exercise helps, too.  I walk for my exercise.  I will also swim when the weather permits.  This does help keep you more flexible.
 
Moist heat will help you to feel a little better.  I love a hot shower.  Many use a Bed Buddy.  You can get these at Walgreen's and other places or you can make your own by taking a tube sock, filling it 2/3's full of raw long grain rice, and tie a knot at the end.  Pop it in the microwave and it will give off moist heat due to the moisture in the rice.
 
Be sure to pace yourself.  If you overdo, you will pay a price of pain.  There are people on this forum that work, so it is possible, but pace yourself.
 
Not only read the Fibro 101 thread, but try reading some back posts.  There is a world of info in them.  Also, ask questions.  We are here to help you.
 
I'm so glad that you found us and joined in.  You have found a great group of caring people and we really do care about each other!  I'm happy you are here and I hope to hear more from you soon.
 
Sherrine 
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


Chutz
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9090
   Posted 5/7/2009 10:13 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi and welcome to our family!

I am so sorry this has hit you at such a young age but life isn't over nor is it destroyed for you...or for me either. Yes, it's not an easy path but hang on (extending hand) and we'll all make it together.

Hard to add much to Sherrine's ideas...but one thing I did want to mention concerns money. Being 'sick' is expensive. If you need help with insurance or medications there are some web sites that can help. The links are below. Plus most drug manufacturers will give free medications to those who qualify. Just call, email or write to them.

Let us know how we can help and we'll do all we can.
Chutzie

http://needymeds.com/
http://www.themedicineprogram.com/

and you can also contact the Red Cross in your area. They will help find insurance and other help you need. There are tons of resources out there that many of us don't know about. Start poking around and you'll find lots of help.
Co-Moderator Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums
~~~
Fibromyalgia, Ulcerative Colitis, Insulin dependent diabetic, PTSD, dermatitis herpetiformus, osteoarthritis and a few other side dishes.
***************
Happiness is something to do, someone to love, and something to hope for."
(\__/)
(='.'=)
(")_(")


Marlee2
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 6067
   Posted 5/8/2009 7:40 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi cenobite and welcome. Sherrine and Chutz pretty much covered everything so I will just welcome you.
 
luv and hugs
Marlee
Forum Moderator Fibromyalgia
 
Fibro,Sjogrens, Anxiety, Gastroparesis, IBS, Gastritis, Allergies, High Blood Pressure, Low Blood Sodium and Osteoarthritis
 
Amitriptyline, Celexa, Xanax, Synthroid, Zyrtec, Micardis, Spironalactone, Tylenol, Reglan, Lidoderm Patches and Tramadol
 
Co Q 10, Super B Complex, Extra B12, Multi vitamin


Lefty85
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 87
   Posted 5/8/2009 5:03 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi! 

I just wanted to say welcome, and also that I can relate to how you're feeling.  I am only twenty-three and I was just recently diagnosed.  I work full time doing manual labor, which can be incredibly difficult most days, but just like you I cannot afford to quit, or to go do anything else for a living at this point.  I only got decent health insurance at the beginning of the year, but I still try to keep costs of everything to a minimum because I have a really high deductable.  I always ask my doctors for generic medications if possible... even if you have to pay full price they usually aren't too expensive.  Also, if you do have insurance and your employer offers a flexible spending account, they are really helpful.  That way you can have a few dollars taken out of your check every week (before taxes, so it doesn't make a big difference) instead of having to come up with a large amount of money at a time for health expenses.  Aside from meds, I find that stretching and using heat are the most beneficial.  Unfortunately I still haven't found a way to make living with fibro easily managable.  But I like to think that there is hope for all of us if we can just find the right treatments. 

Take care!

SaraBeth


Fibromyalgia, Depression, Anxiety
***********
Lyrica 50 mg BID, Diflusinal 500 mg BID, Nortryptiline 50 mg at bedtime, Celexa 20 mg, Flexeril 10 mg PRN, Percocet 5-325 Q4hPRN
*********** 
"In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on."   -Robert Frost
Be not afraid of going slowly, be afraid only of standing still.
One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure its worth watching.
 
 
 
 
                                                                                  


tyno3
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 1081
   Posted 5/8/2009 5:59 PM (GMT -7)   

Hey there (:) cenobite. I think finding this  site was the absolute best thing that has happened to me in a long time. I was at my absolute bottom when I discovered all these great resources. and some pretty amazing people.I belong to several forums; but Fibro's the best. I guess cause Fibro attacks, genuine, compassionate, sensitive and aware; these latter two being the problem. We are victims of a great deal of pain which allows much time for reflection. 

Survival; well, I've become pretty darn "burned the shirt" as regards to survival. I took a page from a very resouceful gentleman, a Park Ranger who kept me from freezing to death one summer while I lived under a tree, in a provincial park, with my Rhodesian/Amstaff, in a pup tent. This genleman got my fire started each morning. despite the rain and wet wood, until I watched and learned. He told me of living under a big rock ridge (like a cave), on the top of Cape Smokey, Cape Breton, N.S. All winter. So, also about Foodbanks and letting your doc know you're not covered, so he will prescribe less expensive medications, ones which have been on the market for some time, way less expensive. Walmart has a $4 prescription program, for certain generics. Also, as the other good folk mentioned, Free Clinics, Pharmaceutical Freebies, and sometimes docs have a few "donations" from the community with chain of custody intact. 

There is something reassuring about hitting your "bottom", you'll know where it's at. And it's good to know where it's at.


Chutz
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9090
   Posted 5/8/2009 6:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Wow Tyno!

You are one amazing person. Some of us have had it bad in the past but you show that no matter where the bottom is you CAN pull yourself up. Thanks for sharing that.

Hugs,
Chutzie
Co-Moderator Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums
~~~
Fibromyalgia, Ulcerative Colitis, Insulin dependent diabetic, PTSD, dermatitis herpetiformus, osteoarthritis and a few other side dishes.
***************
Happiness is something to do, someone to love, and something to hope for."
(\__/)
(='.'=)
(")_(")


tyno3
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 1081
   Posted 5/9/2009 3:08 AM (GMT -7)   
Well Chutz, thanks for the kudos. I guess I am one of those people who have fortunes which run high and low, no Mister in between. I still ponder if I am creating these scenarios, if I am one of those who are perpetually, unconsciously creating chaos, as Doctor Phil would say; being still, in one place is uncomfortable for some, if chaos was what you were born into, you will keep seeking situations in hopes of ultimately "resolving" the original conflict. Deep, too deep. All I know is when I relay stories from my life, sometimes people just stare, almost as if they think I'm making it up. Or that I am just a great "storeyteller". Not so. This is all real. As Amanda Marshall says, in her song, "everybody's got a storey that'll break your heart". The only other advice for our new member, take it a day at a time. Sometimes an hour at a time. Sometimes, I just breathe, and try to get through the next few minutes. "It's like, hey man, tomorrow doesn't exist. It's just one long ------- day man." Credit Janis Joplin. 

AustenFan
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 1771
   Posted 5/9/2009 5:45 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Cenobite, and welcome.  Most of the things I do to help manage my fibro are pretty low cost.  I use heat A LOT in the forms of a heating pad, a rice sock (like Sherrine mentioned), and hot showers. 
 
I use over the counter pain relievers like Tylenol and ibuprofen (I'm on a prescription NSAID right now for another condition, but for the past 10 years, I've used OTC ibuprofen).  I also have a prescription for a generic muscle relaxer that I use sometimes when the pain is really bad.
 
Another low cost "therapy" I use is self massage.  I use a tennis ball and a wooden rolling pin to try to work out the painful knots on my legs and back.  I also have a "Body Back Buddy" which is a weird looking cane shaped thing (you can Google it) that you use to get to hard to reach knots.  It's kind of expensive initially (about $30-$40), but it is a one time expense, and I find it really helpful. 
 
The last thing I would suggest is to try to rest/relax as much as you can after work.  Working two jobs takes its toll on you, I'm sure.  Can you do your cooking on the weekends and freeze it so you don't have to cook during the week?  I also find that a 20-30 minute nap during the day really helps me.  Could you catch a quick nap between jobs or during lunch?
 
It takes a lot of trial and error for most of us to learn how to manage and live with the pain.  I hope you are feeling better soon. 
 
Hugs - Austen
 
 
 
 
"There is no charm equal to tenderness of  heart." - Jane Austen
 
 
Fibromyalgia, 2 back surgeries, Meniere's Disease, 30+ kidney stones, GERD, IBS, Asthma, Allergies, Endometriosis, Heart Arrythmia, Myofascial Pain, TMJ.
 
 
 
 
 
 


SassyMyKitty
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 673
   Posted 5/10/2009 7:24 AM (GMT -7)   
All I can really say is that I understand what you are going through. I am 21 also, and I was diagnosed almost a year ago. But, I was told by the rheumetologist that I had very likely had this illness my whole life. When I was a kid, I just believed them when they said that I had growing pains. I was not very good with pain. It seemed that every little thing hurt me. I would fall down and start crying, even though I wasn't seriously hurt. It all makes sense now.
Why are you working two jobs? Do you have a child that you need to support? I understand that money is always an issue. Neither my husband nor I have a job. I got fired from mine, and my husband cannot find work anywhere. We live in a city that is like the third worst city when it comes to unemployment. I do feel like you are working yourself too hard. Heat therapy is a big help. I use a heating pad a lot. Try to relax as much as you can. Pamper yourself every once in a while. It's good to pamper yourself.
Although you might be denied more than once, I would apply for disability or SSI. It sounds to me like you really need to relax and take it easy. Too much work is too much strain on your body. I am not saying that you need to do nothing, but you need to slow down and find time to relax your body and mind. I hope this helps. Good luck to you.
All that I'm living for,
All that I'm dying for,
All that I can't ignore alone at night.
All that I'm wanted for,
Although I wanted more.
Lock the last open door, my ghosts are gaining on me.
-Evanescence "All that I'm living for"


xXcenobiteXx
New Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 5/13/2009 12:53 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you so much for everyones input! I guess all I can do is slow down and take life one day at a time... it's not going to be easy, but I'm glad I stumbled upon this website. All of my life I've had such trouble finding the kind of support that I need, but I've finally found it!

And Chutz, thank you very much for the Fibro ribbon! I received it yesterday morning... perfect timing!
xXcenobiteXx

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