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Postural Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS)

Postural Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS) is a disorder caused when a patient has a pulse rate that is too fast when the patient stands. Symptoms include headache, rapid heartbeat, lightheadedness with prolonged standing, chronic fatigue, chest pain, and other nonspecific complaints. Many diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and/or Fibromyalgia also suffer from this disorder.

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Index to To Do List T-Shirt and Gift Idea Design

Once you or someone you know or love is diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, or any other disabling condition, that person’s priority by necessity must change. The suggestions in this section can help ease the lifestyle adjustments necessitated by the condition.

Setting Goals While You Cope with a Chronic Illness
by Shelly Burke

Time Management for Those with Disabling Conditions
by Pamela Rice Hahn

May the (Organic) Source Be With You

Many who must cope with the allergies and food sensitivities that often accompany Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS, CFIDS), Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS aka Environmental Illness), and/or Fibromyalgia (FM, FMS) have to go through some trial and error to discern what eating plan will work best for them. Many follow the eating plan with a specific food choice agenda like the Specific Carbohydrate Diet™ — which is proven helpful for those who have the Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) problems that often accompanies Fibromyalgia (or ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s Disease, and other digestive diseases as well), while others take a more relaxed approach to meeting their nutritional requirements, One thing that most experts agree all sensible eating plans have in common is that organic and all natural foods free of chemical additives and preservatives are the healthiest food choices.

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Making Life Easier Allergies

Making Your Bed May Be Bad for Your Health

allergies suck t-shirt and allergy awareness and support gift idea designIf you are like so many who cope with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia, you also cope with allergies. If you must also work to keep your allergies under control, chances are you’ve already taken precautions and other steps in your attempt to allergy-proof your bedroom. That might involve switching to organic cotton sheets, a germ-free humidifier, or an air purifier. According to a recent study, that may not be enough. It appears that something as simple as making your bed every day may be creating a bedroom environment that will worsen your allergy symptoms.

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by Bernie aka TigerLilea

The Specific Carbohydrate Diet™ (SCD™) is a grain-free, lactose-free, and sucrose-free diet that was originally designed for Celiac Disease. Today the SCD is also used for Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Candida, Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, Diverticulitis, Cystic Fibrosis, and Chronic Diarrhea. The SCD™ is proving helpful to many with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia as well.

The SCD was designed by Dr. Sidney Haas for his young Celiac patients. Years later his son, Dr. Merrill Haas also joined him in his research and together in 1951 they published a book called Management of Celiac Disease.

Elaine Gottschall popularized the SCD after her daughter successfully used the diet in the late 1950s to recover from Ulcerative Colitis.

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The “Will to Live” Project

By their very nature, no illness, accident, or injury is ever convenient. Someone’s medical care should not be based on what is most expedient, practical, or affordable for anyone other than the patient! It’s important that your wishes be known if — because of the inconvenience of illness, accident, or injury — you are unable to speak for yourself. Some believe that the “Will to Live” in which you appoint a health care proxy or health care agent provides you with more safeguards than does a living will.

Recent events have raised concerns among those of us in the disability community that “the danger in our culture is not that we will be over-treated, but rather that we will be under-treated. We already have the right to refuse medical treatment. What we run the risk of losing is the right to receive the most basic humane care — like food and water — in the event we have a disability.” (Source: Fr. Frank Pavone )
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Understanding Autoimmune Illness

by Pamela Rice Hahn

Your body constantly battles forces that are out to cause you harm, such as dangerous bacteria and viruses. Sometimes even despite your concerted efforts of practicing good hygiene and other preventative measures, one of them slips by and enters your body. When all goes according to plan, your immune system zaps these nasty microorganisms and all is well.

Other times, something triggers the “oops” mechanism in your body and your immune system becomes overactive and, in essence, gets a bit mixed up about what specifically it’s supposed to be doing. When that “oops” happens, your immune system begins to attack the healthy cells it’s supposed to be protecting.

The result can be that an autoimmune illness develops.
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Time Management for Those with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, & Other Disabling Conditions

by Pamela Rice Hahn

How do you manage your time when your body seems to be sabotaging your every effort to do so?

Anyone who copes with the turmoil caused by Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, or another disabling conditions for which one of the primary symptoms is devastating fatigue knows how difficult it is to plan your time. It’s true: Nobody seems to have enough time at his or her disposal. But most people can predict with a degree of certainty how they’ll feel from one minute to the next. Predictability is a key to optimal time management. That’s the stuff of which time studies are made — or broken.
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by Shelly Burke

Our society as a whole is very goal-oriented, and when you have a chronic illness like Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or Fibromyalgia you may feel discouraged when you can’t accomplish as much as “everyone else” does. Setting goals gives you a way to work toward and measure your accomplishments.

To be effective, goals must be:

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Because many diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia also deal with Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS) also known as Environmental Illness (EI) — which can include allergies and/or sensitivities to preservatives, food additives, or food itself, and because many diagnosed with Fibromyalgia must also contend with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), knowing which food additives are good, safe additives isn’t always easy to determine. (For example, in my case it doesn’t matter what’s added to bread in any efforts to make it more healthful; if the bread contains preservatives, it’s going to cause me to get a yeast rash. That sometimes doesn’t happen when I eat bread without preservatives; for me, I’ve found that yeast products are safest when I make my own using flour that I’ve ground myself and I now usually limit myself to sour dough bread that I make myself. –Pamela Rice Hahn) Learning what’s safe for you to eat is an ongoing process of education, diligence, and trial-and-error.

To help in your efforts to educate yourself about additives that can adversely affect your health, consult:

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Welcome to

Proceeds from this Web site fund chronic illness and chronic condition awareness and support.

In addition to the chronic illness- and chronic condition-related articles, information, and t-shirt and gift idea designs on this site, is also the home of the Chronic Illness Realities comic strips.

pammy the pencil a character in the Writing Woes comic strip and the Chronic Illness Realities Comic StripPammy is the main character in two comic strips by Pamela Rice Hahn, the first of which is the Writing Woes comic strip. Pammy is a writer who is also disabled because of chronic illness and chronic conditions, so she also appears in the Chronic Illness Realities comic strip.

 The Everything Low-Salt Cookbook Book: 300 Flavorful Recipes to Help Reduce Your Sodium Intake by Pamela Rice Hahn
 The Everything Diabetes Cookbook: 300 Creative and Healthy Recipes That Put the Fun Back into Cooking by Pamela Rice Hahn
 The Everything One Pot Cookbook: Delicious and simple meals that you can prepare in just one dish; Burst: 300 all-new recipes! 2nd edition by Pamela Rice Hahn
The Everything Improve Your Writing Book 2nd Edition by Pamela Rice Hahn
Alpha Teach Yourself Grammar and Style in 24 Hours  by Pamela Rice Hahn and Ph.D. Dennis E. Hensley

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