Blog changes

Thanks to everyone who followed Training Because I Can! over the last nine years. This blog started with Addison's Disease, hypothyroidism and a crazy idea of doing an Ironman distance triathlon. My life has changed and so has this blog. I am using this blog strictly for Addison's Support topics from here on out. I hope to continue providing people with hints for living life well with adrenal insufficiency.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Steroid guilt

There's a subset of people with Addison's Disease who are VERY hesitant to increase our steroids despite our body giving us clear signals that we need more steroids. I like to call this "Steroid guilt". I most certainly a sufferer of this STUPIDITY.

I think the more athletic Addisonian's tend to suffer the worst from this. We are used to putting our body through good pain and getting good results. We have conditioned ourselves to overlook the symptoms below, often until it's too late and we're really sick.

Those of us who suffer with steroid guilt will refuse to see these adrenal insufficiency symptoms as signs of needing to increase:
  • low blood pressure
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • being cold to the bone and having a hard time warming up
  • heavy arms and legs
  • chills
  • diarrhea, especially bloody
  • inappropriate fatigue
  • extended injury
  • frequent colds
  • frequent trips to the ER
We will go on about our days complaining of a persistent stomach ache or being cold, giving no thought to increasing our steroids or blowing someone off who suggests it.

Why do we do this?

I think it's because it's been drilled into us that we
a) will get fat if we increase our steroids
b) will get osteoporosis
c) need to be on the lowest amount of steroids possible at all times
d) we've seen others pop HC like candy, who suffer from Cushingoid symptoms, take waaaaay too much HC way too often. We don't want to be like them.

We completely disrespect our body by ignoring the fact that if we had working adrenals and have any of the above symptoms, our body would make extra cortisol. We force our body to work harder and be under stress longer and not heal as well because we are stubborn and feel guilty. It's stupid. I have done this over and over. I am committing to treating my body much better and listening to it calling to me with the symptoms I listed above.

You know what can happen if we ignore our body's cry for steroids, we can end up with vomiting and have to go to the hospital to get IV fluids and IV steroids (and it costs a lot of money!), we can end up with the diagnosis of IBS because we're not giving our intestines what they need to work properly, we can end up with cold after cold that might turn into pneumonia

You that don't take enough meds, you know who you are!

Think twice about complaining about the persistent nausea! Try increasing your steroids for a day.

Don't keep wondering why your BP is so low for days on end, don't attribute it to something else, try increasing your steroids for a few days!

Hear me complaining about nausea, low bp, being tired, don't hesitate to tell me to increase my steroids.

You get the picture! If you DO increase your steroids, you can ALWAYS drop back down to normal levels immediately. If you increase your steroids and you show signs of over replacement, drop back down immediately. However, if you increase your steroids and your symptoms go away you know you've done the right thing and perhaps you're training yourself better for the future. You may be potentially avoiding a trip to the ER.

This is too long. I hope someone has read and heard and will listen.
Post a Comment