Asthma Storylines Health Tracking Application – Review

Disclaimer: For my honest review, I am being compensated through the Chronic Illness Bloggers group. Even though I’m receiving compensation for my review, all opinions of the product/service are accurate and reflect my true thoughts about the product/service. I was in no way influenced by the company or CIB.

I was selected to review the “Asthma Storylines” mobile application (for Android) by Health Storylines (link). For context, I was using this application on an LG G5 running Android Nougat (7.0). I used this app daily for one week prior to writing this review, and overall I’m quite impressed! Of course, there are a few things that could use some tweaking (like in every single application I’ve ever used, of any type), but it’s an impressive health tracking app!

Actually, I wasn’t just impressed, I was extremely happy. It’s a very thorough health tracking app, and definitely not just for asthma management – despite the name. There are several different tools to utilize, and the ones I used most extensively were: Symptoms, Medication Tracker, Routine Builder, and Daily Asthma Control. Since I fiddled with the rest of the app as well, my overall impression (at the bottom) takes the entire experience into consideration, not just these four tools. Continue reading

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What Are Your Respirator Mask Recommendations?

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I’ve concluded I need a reusable respirator mask that I’ll wear more often.

The allergist that had been dealing with me (I’ve stopped seeing him for various reasons) told me to get an N95 mask to wear whenever I’m around airborne allergens – like when I’m cleaning, gardening, etc. He wasn’t entirely clear how often I was supposed to be wearing it, but it’s supposed to help reduce my permanent rhinitis and my eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) symptoms.

My recent throat infection horribly flared up my EoE and made me realize I need something to reduce infections and filter allergens… on a regular basis. There was also a wildfire less than ten miles from my house, at the tale end of my infection, and it really brought the point home. My EoE is still completely flared up.

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Albuterol Jitterbug

Because of my asthma, I always have had a rescue inhaler… Since I was about five. Thankfully, I don’t have to use it often anymore. Throughout school I had to use it quite often because my asthma is mostly exercise induced and we had to do a weekly mile (two in high school) in physical education. I also got sick a lot in school, and illnesses love to settle in the lungs if you have asthma.

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As It Turns Out

I am very sick. I wasn’t entirely sure for a few days, thought it might just be allergies and dry air that were making my throat hurt. But now, completely positive. I have developed a nasty cough, one I used to get as a kid a lot. It’s horrible and painful. Plus the fatigue is thru the roof and my nose is trying to escape. Not to bad on the pain front, however, so that’s a plus. Just the major pain of my throat and the arm thing.

Oh well. Hopefully I can get better before school starts next week… Hopefully without the aid of my nebulizer.

The Difficulty of Chronics vs Being Sick

Since I got diagnosed with all my Chronics (see the sidebar for the list), it is very difficult to determine when I’m sick. Why? Well, let’s break that down, shall we?

First, the symptoms of the common cold (source: Mayo Clinic):

  • Runny or stuffy noseflu2
  • Itchy or sore throat
  • Cough
  • Congestion
  • Slight body aches or a mild headache
  • Sneezing
  • Watery eyes
  • Low-grade fever
  • Mild fatigue

And the symptoms of the flu (source: Mayo Clinic):

  • Fever over 100 F (38 C)20100902155255-1_0
  • Aching muscles, especially in your back, arms and legs
  • Chills and sweats
  • Headache
  • Dry, persistent cough
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Nasal congestion
  • Sore throat

Those seem pretty straight forward, don’t they? Well, unfortunately, my Chronics make it anything but.

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So I took a ton of photos at Zion National Park. Here are a few of my favorites:

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Zion National Park Photos

Chronic Living – Buzzfeed

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Living With A Health Problem | Buzzfeed

Here’s a collection of good quotes about living as a young adult with chronic health issues.

Natural Therapy

Oh man, do I miss hiking. Dan and I used to go hiking all the time. We both used to go hiking all the time long before we met each other.

day 4 imageFor me, nature was always a kind of natural medicine. I’ve struggled with depression for most of my life, but being out in nature… well, that was a different story. Hiking out into the trees, getting away from people, getting away from cars, getting away from noise, it always calmed my soul down. I love the smell of pine trees, especially in the cool air, and the sound they make when the wind blows through them. It really is amazing how fast it can work. I have gone hiking because I was angry, because I was sad, just because I felt the need to, and it is almost always immediate. The second I’m into nature, I start to feel a change. Everything in my body relaxes. My breathing slows and deepens. My brain actually shuts off and focuses for once. I feel relaxed and happy.

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Don’t Worry, I’m Still Alive

I just haven’t been feeling up to doing this (blogging). Which I know means I should, but I just don’t want to. I’m three weeks post-op today! So I figured I’d mark the occasion with a small post filling you in on the last week.

My thoughts have been in a kind of dark funk lately… not things I want to write about though, which is part of why there haven’t been any posts. When my depression freaks out, it kind of takes over, and then I have a hard time doing anything at all.

Temper Tantrum

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The “Allergen Account”, and the Shots to Combat It

Last week I started my allergy shots. Turns out I’ll be doing two shots (one in each arm) once a week for the next, well, probably two to three years. Left arm is always going to be molds, right arm will always be pollens. They’re given in a weird spot though, the back of my upper arm. I’m supposed to monitor the injection site… how am I expected to do that when they’re back there?! It involves sense of touch, mirrors and lots of twisting, I can tell you that much.

Pollen Death

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