SI Pain: 46/100 | Rib Pain: 5/100 | Concrete Back: 22/100
I think I need to do another diary entry today because I am in the midst of an AS flare.
I don’t know yet how bad it will be, but it started properly yesterday and was probably a 30 out of 100.
Now, as I write this this evening, it has gone up to 46/100.
It is affecting my lower left SI joint. So it is the usual area.
I need to work out how long it has been since my last flare in this area, but it feels like it has been a really long time.
The time between new flares seems fairly consistent now and is maybe somewhere between 60 and 70 days, although I will need to double-check this on the spreadsheet.
That is so much better than anything previously, especially given that I’m not taking any anti-inflammatories or medication to treat it.
So at least that is something to be positive about. And it hasn’t, since I got really strict with the diet, ever got to that crippling level of pain where I literally cannot move.
I went on a long walk to one of my favourite spots and had a large black coffee on the way which lifted my mood a bit, I guess.
This morning I had a scorching hot bath with Epsom salts which I think did help a little.
Didn’t sleep well last night but at the same time, I managed to sleep in until nearly 9:30am (which is really late for me) so I’m obviously fighting something.
I am also coughing uncontrollably and my nose has become a snot factory. This feels like AS rather than anything else, but I part of me is wondering whether I could have picked up a bug and that this could be triggering the flare.
Things which I know have played a part…
On Thursday I got myself in a stress about work stuff and was up very early in the am trying to get ahead of things. Even with a headstart it was still a frantic day.
Friday was stressful too. I was helping a loved one with house stuff and it involved a lot of bending over and getting into difficult places. This never good when you are on the cusp of a flare with AS.
I had the sensation that a flare was coming but it wasn’t bad enough to worry too much at this stage, and I thought it might just go away of its own accord.
The next day involved a lot of travelling (not being able to move) and socialising. By now the AS was really sneaking up on me, and I just felt totally exhausted and distracted, and I felt a bit stiff. I had a niggling, headache like AS sensation of the lower left SI joint.
I was still not convinced that I was in flare at this point, but a day of not walking enough, travel stress and feeling totally knackered just added to the problems.
The one good thing I noticed on the Saturday was that my lower left SI joint pain had subsided by about 4pm. I’m almost certain this is because I accidentally fasted for a long period of time.
I don’t eat breakfast and then I didn’t have lunch so I hadn’t really eaten since last night.
So many people with AS find that going on a fast for one, two or three days can really help lift them out of a flare.
So I think this helped prove that but then things took a nose dive.
We went for a drink in the evening which was really lovely but sat on a stool with no back. One of the drinks was a cocktail (sugary mixers!) and I know without doubt that alcohol doesn’t help my AS.
In summary I think the combination of stress, bending over too much, sitting on bad chairs, and then having alcohol has turned what was potentially just a blip to a flare.
The anxiety now is that it will turn into a prolonged flare, but I’m going to do everything I can to keep it down to two or three days. I have had problems in the past where it has gone on for weeks or more, and I really want to avoid that.
I know deep down that maybe the secret here would be to go on a 2-day fast, but it is really hard especially as I feel hungry a lot of the time.
The other thing I wanted to mention was my knee. Over the past two days (which is the two days of this flare) the knee pain has been almost non-existent.
I do have a very slight sensation there but it is not painful; it just feels like it is lightly bruised.
Again, probably the cure for this is probably to test fasting and to cut out any alcohol.
The trouble with modern life is you have all these routines to help keep you on track but it can be hard to eliminate absolutely everything.