sessifet: (Default)
Have new prescription of Singulair. Pharmacy let me know they will supply Singulair when it's on the prescription and will not swap out for a generic, so it's a mater of making sure my repeat prescriptions are correct. I will raise this with my doctor at my asthma check-up next month. For the moment I am very, very tired. I find it difficult to complete sentences when speaking (I just kind of trail off). I'm not hungry, I'm not sad, I'm not anything except tired. It's very frustrating, but at least I know I'll be better reasonably soon.

Still kind of sucks.
sessifet: (Llama face)
Since about January, I've been using Seretide combined with something called Singulair. The former is an inhaler with both a long acting version of the active component in the emergency inhaler, Ventolin, and a low impact steroid (with limited build-up, therefore fewer side effects.

The latter is something called a leukotriene receptor antagonist (LTRA) and as Wikipedia so kindly explains:

is a CysLT 1 antagonist; it blocks the action of leukotriene D4 (and secondary ligands LTC4 and LTE4) on the cysteinyl leukotriene receptor CysLT 1 in the lungs and bronchial tubes by binding to it. This reduces the bronchoconstriction otherwise caused by the leukotriene and results in less inflammation.

I'm fortunately one of the 33 percent of people for whom Singulair works spectacularly and it, the Seretide and quitting my job are what's helped get my asthma under control. So go team LTRA, right? We now skip merrily off into the sunset hand in hand (wheezing occasionally when hitting a patch of perfume), yes?

Well, not exactly. See, on my last prescription refill, they swamped the branded LTRA Singulair out for the generic version (simply called Montelukast) and despite having the same active ingredient, it's absolutely not working for me. I am now one of the 33 percent who only get the side effects and none of the benefits. Side effects include fun GI tract issues, anxiety, insomnia and irritability. Oh, and I have a persistent tight chest again because, guess what? Meds not working!

Where the anxiety comes in is frustrating and scary as I'm dreaming about normal interactions with friends and family and I'm upset or making a joke or something and they're all treating me like a lying, attention seeking bitch who should just be shunned. And then I wake up feeling like there's a miniature elephant on my chest and I can't get back to sleep because I've just been triggered something fierce.

And this has happened three times in the last three days, so I'm not surprised I woke up over an hourago having a proper asthma attack. Still fucking scary. Still all systems on red alert. Still the brainweasels jumping in with you sure it's the medication? What do you know about this stuff? You're not a doctor. It's not that the meds aren't working, it's that you're going crazy. Normal people don't have these kinds of problems. And that's roughly when the ventolin kicked in and the brainweasels slunk away muttering ineffectually, so I'm learning to recognise the symptoms and alleviate them before total meltdown happens. Go me! (No, seriously. I'm really proud of how I handled this attack.)

I can still feel the tightness under my breastbone (which my phone persisted in correcting to headstone no less than four times. I own a troll phone) and radiating out into my ribs, but I've stopped feeling like I'm about to die or go insane, so that's nice. Still kind of want a hug and possibly a good cry, but I'll survive. And later today I will pick up my replacement prescription and things will go back to normal in a few days. Now I'll try to get some more sleep.
sessifet: (Confuzzled)
[I appreciate I kind of turn into the All Asthma All The Time channel occasionally, but this is how I learn. And it may help people who know (and presumably love) me to recognise the signs and poke me before it gets too far and I ruin the mood by being that panicky flail-y keel-over-dead person who's always such a bore at social gatherings. I don't think it'll be necessary, but one never knows.]

The annoying thing about having an asthma attack1 is how stupid I feel for not recognising it by now. I kick myself for fretting and being anxious and indulging in doom and gloom thinking and oh gods, I'm such a pathetic hypochondriac. Outside warning signs: fidgeting (more than usual), reaching for my glass/cup a lot, yawning/sighing a lot. I can be distracted and slightly snappish. I don't wheeze. I don't complain about shortness of breath (if I say anything at all, I might mention I'm feeling a bit twitchy).

Eventually I realise I'm holding my breath or thinking about breathing constantly and I reach for the emergency inhaler. There's an interval in which I honestly, truly think that this is not asthma, I've been having a pain in my left leg for over a week and oh gods, it's a pulmonary embolism and I'm going to die and then the salbutamol kicks in and I feel so relieved I cry. This one's visible, unsurprisingly. I'm likely apologising for making a fuss and for being weird and oh god, oxygen is my best friend ever! And then I'm weepy with relief and stress and anxiety for a while longer, because that's just how adrenaline come-down works for me. I may or may not be pathetically asking for hugs. I will probably want to talk about the bit where I totally nearly just died. I realise this is not exactly fun for all the family and it sure as hell is not fun from this side either. Just bear with me. Possibly tell me bad off-colour jokes.

See, the single most distressing thing about having an asthma attack2 is how incredibly anxious and scared I get every single time. You'd think eventually your brain and body learn that this is business as usual and there's no need to go into full panic mode every time there's a blip on the radar. But of course it won't ever learn because we're fucking around with a survival necessity here and a brain/body that doesn't start getting at least mildly distressed at not getting sufficient air is not one long for this world. So out come the flashing red lights and the whoopwhooping and the 'this is not a drill! I repeat, this is not a drill!' survival instincts.

I don't want to make a scene. I'm not trying to be the centre of attention and being put there because of an attack will likely make it worse because whoo, social anxiety! The thing is, I can't stop it by willpower. I can't control it once it gets going. All there is is emergency relief and riding it out.

Huh. I've just described an almost classic panic attack. This makes absolute sense, with the difference that I can't stop a 'normal' panic attack with a blue inhaler.

Also, I'm calling the GP tomorrow to see if this is normal or if we need to up my steroids.

1 You know, apart from that pesky not being able to breathe properly thing.
2 See 1.
sessifet: (Default)
Registered at the GP today. Absolutely no fuss whatsoever.

Went to the shops and discovered something rather annoying: there is almost no squash which does not have sweeteners in it. I seriously spent 5 minutes studying various labels to see if this one might by any chance really not have sweeteners.

See, you label these things. It says "With Sweeteners!" on the bottle. This is good. It saves me from picking up that bottle and being disappointed when I count the number of additives and sweeteners.

However, what isn't good is this: "No artificial sweeteners!". This leads me to go "Yay!" and lunge at the bottle, only to have my hopes crushed by the word 'saccharine'. It's a damned sweetener, you fools! It will therefore send me rocketing around the room within five minutes of drinking it and will have me in agony after thirty minutes. Of course, it won't because I won't drink it. See, I hate the taste of artificial sugar. It is vile. It is evil. (Ooh, an anagram. Pretty.)

I ended up buying High Juice. It's orange squash. I don't particularly like orange squash. But hey, I'll take what I can get.

(Although, after complaining about the lack of proper squash, a kind fairy dropped by to exchange electronic hostages and dropped off some lovely crushes and a very interesting ginger and lemongrass cordial. *snuggles him*)

I'm otherwise enjoying myself immensely and the holiday feeling is nearly gone. Occasionally I have to pinch myself and remind me that I'm not going back, so I don't have to buy all the lovely things I see in the shops, because I'll be here next week and so will they.

And now I will be bad and try out this recipe again.
sessifet: (Default)
Registered at the GP today. Absolutely no fuss whatsoever.

Went to the shops and discovered something rather annoying: there is almost no squash which does not have sweeteners in it. I seriously spent 5 minutes studying various labels to see if this one might by any chance really not have sweeteners.

See, you label these things. It says "With Sweeteners!" on the bottle. This is good. It saves me from picking up that bottle and being disappointed when I count the number of additives and sweeteners.

However, what isn't good is this: "No artificial sweeteners!". This leads me to go "Yay!" and lunge at the bottle, only to have my hopes crushed by the word 'saccharine'. It's a damned sweetener, you fools! It will therefore send me rocketing around the room within five minutes of drinking it and will have me in agony after thirty minutes. Of course, it won't because I won't drink it. See, I hate the taste of artificial sugar. It is vile. It is evil. (Ooh, an anagram. Pretty.)

I ended up buying High Juice. It's orange squash. I don't particularly like orange squash. But hey, I'll take what I can get.

(Although, after complaining about the lack of proper squash, a kind fairy dropped by to exchange electronic hostages and dropped off some lovely crushes and a very interesting ginger and lemongrass cordial. *snuggles him*)

I'm otherwise enjoying myself immensely and the holiday feeling is nearly gone. Occasionally I have to pinch myself and remind me that I'm not going back, so I don't have to buy all the lovely things I see in the shops, because I'll be here next week and so will they.

And now I will be bad and try out this recipe again.
sessifet: (Hold Me)
I no longer have a wisdom tooth. I now have a hole in my jaw. Easiest extraction ever and there are no more wisdom teeth to come after this one. Yay.

I want the anaesthetic to wear off though so I can have a cup of tea. Alfo, I wif to ftop fpeaking wif a lifp. It makes mum giggle like a loon, but otherwise it's annoying.
sessifet: (Hold Me)
I no longer have a wisdom tooth. I now have a hole in my jaw. Easiest extraction ever and there are no more wisdom teeth to come after this one. Yay.

I want the anaesthetic to wear off though so I can have a cup of tea. Alfo, I wif to ftop fpeaking wif a lifp. It makes mum giggle like a loon, but otherwise it's annoying.
sessifet: (Default)
Yay. I can has semi-impacted wisdom tooth. *sulks*
sessifet: (Default)
Yay. I can has semi-impacted wisdom tooth. *sulks*
sessifet: (Snuggly)
Ill again.Can't afford to stay home because of work, so I'm currently stocking up on painkillers and fruit juice. I really should think about investing in a thermos mug.
sessifet: (Snuggly)
Ill again.Can't afford to stay home because of work, so I'm currently stocking up on painkillers and fruit juice. I really should think about investing in a thermos mug.
sessifet: (Default)
Problem is, I can't be Not Well. I have no time to be Not Well, and therefore I must not be Not Well. (If I repeat this often enough, maybe my body'll start believing it and leave me be. Unfortunately, the evidence tells me I'm not having any luck with this whole mind over matter thing.)

My throat hurts, my ears itch, my body hurts, I cough like a dead woman and the cough medicine I've been chugging makes me feel a bit...oh look! pink elephant!...weird.

I shall now go and feel sorry for myself.
sessifet: (Default)
Problem is, I can't be Not Well. I have no time to be Not Well, and therefore I must not be Not Well. (If I repeat this often enough, maybe my body'll start believing it and leave me be. Unfortunately, the evidence tells me I'm not having any luck with this whole mind over matter thing.)

My throat hurts, my ears itch, my body hurts, I cough like a dead woman and the cough medicine I've been chugging makes me feel a bit...oh look! pink elephant!...weird.

I shall now go and feel sorry for myself.

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