What is POTS? A Short Video by Dysautonomia International


What is POTS?

  • POTS is an acronym. POTS = Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome
  • A type of dysautonomia
    • Dysautonomia = dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system
  • Characterized by a rise in heart rate by 30 beats per minute (or more) within ten minutes of standing
    • or a standing heart rate of 120bpm or more
  • Blood pressure can either increase, decrease, or stay the same
  • A collection of symptoms that can impact every part of your body
  • A life altering condition
    • quality of life analogous to congestive heart failure and COPD
  • Worth fighting!

Video from Dysautonomia International‘s Facebook Page

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Supplements Carry Risks Too

Don’t get me wrong, I am not just blindly wanting you to follow “Big Pharma” down the rabbit hole of taking more drugs and needing drugs to counteract the side effects of those drugs. Actually, I am all for all sorts of different combinations of lifestyles. If you love taking pharmaceuticals, then go take your pharmaceuticals and I’m so happy that they make you feel better! If you love taking supplements, then please go take your supplements and enjoy your life! If you love combining the two, then go do that too and enjoy feeling better! Woot for feeling better and managing our symptoms the best way we know how!!!

Anyway. Now that that is over, here we go. The point of the post 😛

Some people don’t realize that supplements can carry just as many risks as pharmaceuticals can. In fact, I would argue that, because of the state of “common knowledge” they are more dangerous. Why do I say that? Simply because people read an “all natural” label and are willing to pop it into their mouth without learning anything else about it… leading to potentially deadly consequences.

Wait, did I just say deadly?

Yes, yes I did. Continue reading

Nausea and Dysautonomia

Today, Dysautonomia International shared an article to their Facebook  about nausea and vomiting, and how the two don’t always go hand in hand and how they tied to the nervous system. The text that accompanied D.I.’s post points out that nausea is a common symptom for dysautonomia patients.

As many of you know, I have been suffering with chronic nausea for years. Lately, it’s been so bad that, at times, I struggle to eat. That’s actually part of why my GI decided to do the colonoscopy. As of my last appointment, he didn’t believe I had primary gastroparesis, but he did say I definitely have what is called “delayed gastric emptying” which is caused by my whole system running slow so it tells my stomach to stop working. Very similar, but different causes. He is thinking he might do more testing though, later, just to be sure.

I am wondering if the reason my nausea is so bad is because it has multiple causes?

Anyway, I found the article extremely interesting and really wanted to share:

Nausea and Vomiting: Not Always in Sync by Pharmacy Times

Summary of A Pilot Study Using AVS for Insomnia in Adults and Chronic Pain Patients

Here is my paper. I had to write a summary of the article that I read. At the bottom is the reference, which includes all of the information for the article if you are interested in finding it for yourself.


Summary of A Pilot Study of Audio-Visual Stimulation as a Self-Care Treatment for Insomnia in Adults with Insomnia in Chronic Pain

Chronic pain and sleep disturbances are comorbid conditions, meaning they are often diagnosed in the same patient. It is estimated that one in three Americans suffers from chronic pain, and as many as 88% of those suffering from chronic pain also suffer from some sort of regular sleep disturbance (Tang, Vitiello, Perlis, Mao, & Riegel, 2014); that equates to about 78 million American adults suffering from chronic pain, with about 68 million also suffering from sleep difficulties (Howden & Meyer, 2011). These statistics show a shockingly high level of comorbidity, and a need for a solution. It has also been suggested that the relationship between pain and sleep may be bidirectional, meaning that increased sleep disturbances increases pain levels and increased pain levels increases sleep disturbances. Sleep disturbances have also been linked to other physical and psychiatric problems, which have also been shown to cause chronic pain problems, suggesting that treatment for chronic pain should focus on sleep disturbances.

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Soon I’ll Have Research to Share

The paper I’m writing for psych isn’t a traditional research paper. Instead of a research paper, we had to find a short article related to psychology and then summarize it in plain English (I think it’s so we can have more practice in reading and understanding scientific articles). I chose an article that is related to insomnia and chronic pain. Once I get my paper turned in, I’ll share it with you guys because I find it very interesting.

Here’s my paper: Summary of A Pilot Study of Audio-Visual Stimulation as a Self-Care Treatment for Insomnia in Adults with Insomnia in Chronic Pain

I Need Some Research Help – Possible New Muscular Symptom

Today was my Reformer for Recovery Pilates class. We started by doing a few gentle squats. When I say a few, I mean three or four. Gentle means a very shallow squat, just as far as is comfortable, and no added weight at all. I did one just fine. Then every single other one had my quadriceps (thigh muscles) burning. We weren’t holding them, we were just dipping down and straightening up. The muscles were only burning when I was in the squat position. I was barely squatting. As soon as I’d stand up, the burning would stop. The burn is EXTREMELY intense, and makes me want to collapse; pushing through the pain is almost impossible.

light squat

This photo shows me squatting (I took it just for this post) about the same I did in class. I may be a little lower than I was in class, actually. And yes, getting this photo burned really badly again, but I am currently on 1/2 a Tramadol and a full metaxalone so it wasn’t as intense. As you can see, these aren’t shouldn’t be very taxing squats.

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Your Brain on Pain

I get Real Simple magazine. It felt weird switching from Cosmo to Real Simple, but I suddenly felt like the magazine was being written more towards me, so it was obviously the right time to switch. It’s odd what things make us realize we’re growing up. Anyway, I don’t tend to write about what I read because the things I utilize from the magazine tend to be the organizing and cleaning tips (and there are SO MANY of those online). I do occasionally read stories that tug at my heart, but since I’ve started this blog I hadn’t read a story that felt like it was written specifically for me.

real simple august cover

Well, that all changed in the August 2015 issue (I just read it recently because I fell behind, haha). In the August issue, there is an article simply titled “Pain.” I figured it would probably focus on “normal” pain, for “normal” people… which is kind of true. However, it did actually discuss chronic pain. And there were some disturbing pieces of research mentioned in the article.

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