So I received an interesting alert in my email concerning a study that showed that weather doesn’t affect fibromyalgia symptoms as much as patients think. They found that humidity and rain played a small role in affecting symptoms, but many of us who live with fibro every day believe weather has a bigger impact than that.
Now I know enough to be cautious because this study has only been presented at a conference and has yet to go through the peer review process. I also know enough to be cautious and not expect that because my experiences contradict a scientific study that they automatically invalidate the research findings; they don’t. But the results did get me thinking. My symptoms are better in the summertime and I always associated it with the warm weaher. After all, heat helps relieve my symptoms.
But then again, I’m a teacher. So my symptoms might be better during the summer because I can get more sleep each night and I’m not on my feet all day. And in the summer I get more exercise because we have longer, warmer days. Almost every day we go on short walks or bike rides. In the winter, I have to push myself to exercise inside. So maybe the fact that my symptoms are better in the summer is because I’m able to do more things to manage my symptoms and not because of the weather. It makes sense. I’ll be interested to know more when more research is done.
The follwoing quote from one of the researchers, Ercolie Bossema, is partuclarly telling: “The cause of fibromyalgia is unknown. The weather is always there and is always changing, just like the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Therefore the weather can be blamed for the symptoms. ” Fibromyalgia’s variability means we who have it can blame lots of things for it, and alternately that we can try all kinds of methods to relieve the symptoms and assume that they’re making a difference when they’re not really doing so. I try to stick with what has some science behind it because that variability makes us fibro sufferers vulnerable to cranks and charlatans looking to make a buck.
So this afternoon I’ll probably take a 20 minute nap and tonight I’ll probably take a 20 minute walk around the neighborhood and I should fell alright. Not the best, but alright. And today alright is enough for me.