A Day In The Life: Slowly But Surely

Slowly but surely I’m making progress despite my recent set back.

My granuloma annulare rash had flared up again these last few days but is back to being almost invisible again (yay!). That means my mast cells aren’t dumping TNF-a by the bucket load.

My dizziness, vertigo and presyncope let up and my gums stopped bleeding, another very good indicator things are slowly but surely going back to “normal”.

I’m still waiting for the last of the NeuroProtek pills to make its way out of my digestive tract and until that’s over things won’t be completely calm again. My digestion slowed down so much it may take another day or two for it to get out of there and in the meantime there’s little I can do to help it along. Still, it’s just a matter of time now.

Slowly but surely it will make its way out and I’ll feel so much better again!

Since I’m off all of my antihistamines my GERD and allergy stuff is slowly but surely coming back. I’m sniffling and sneezing more often and my eyes are burning and watery. My skin is red and burning, especially if I scratch. It’s hard not to scratch because I’m itchy from head to toe but I’m slowly but surely learning to ignore it because when I do scratch it triggers a MCAS chain reaction and ultimately makes things worse.

I can live with the acid reflux and allergy stuff, it’s the infernal inflammation that is slowly but surely driving me crazy!!

I am slowly but surely realizing that thanks to my mast cell activation there may not be much my doctors can do for my inflammation problem, which is extremely disconcerting, but I do at least have one surefire tool in my arsenal for when it gets bad! It doesn’t need a doctor visit or a prescription, either.

Today I learned that there’s actually a name for what I’ve been doing for years to alleviate my systemic inflammation and the resulting pain. It’s called “contrast bath therapy” and it really works (really!):

Contrast bath therapy, also known as “hot/cold immersion therapy“, is a form of treatment where a limb or the entire body is immersed in warm water followed by the immediate immersion of the limb or body in ice water. This procedure is repeated several times, alternating hot and cold. Note that the treatment should always end in the ice water, as heat will induce the body’s inflammatory response, while cold helps to decrease inflammation.

When I’m inflamed, if I can get to a warm (not too hot or I faint!) bath/shower and then follow up with a blast of cold air or cold water then my symptoms immediately abate. It’s pretty amazing how quickly it helps and I never really understood why until today. I just always knew I felt better doing it. So I’ve been trying to remind myself to use this contrast bath technique more often for pain relief and to reduce the inflammation.

I’m also slowly but surely realizing that waiting too long makes it harder to contain so as soon as my inflammatory symptoms start up I head to the bath tub. Of course the effect doesn’t last too long, maybe an hour or so, but the relief it brings is a blessing.

It gives me a chance to take a breather from the madness and remember that slowly but surely I am making progress here.

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