Living with debilitating chronic and invisible illnesses are so very hard. This is why I share my story, so that greater awareness can be brought to the world. Today I share what will be a series of blogs about the different illnesses that I live with.
The illness I am beginning with is (FND) Functional Neurological Disorder and below is what it involves and the many symptoms that I suffer with – at times all at the same time, and other times seperately. (FND) or Functional Neurological Disorder occurs as a result of a problem with my central nervous system and my brain failing to send or receive messages correctly.
The list of symptoms is very long and many of them can be very disabling. Living with FND, sees me experience a number of symptoms at the same time or perhaps just living with one or two symptoms at a time as I spoke about earlier. Just as with my other chronic illness and autoimmunity, I can find frequency and severity in my symptoms. Also a lot of these symptoms are also found in the diagnosis of MS & Parkinson’s Disease making it high level debilitating, life changing and hard to diagnose.
Below I list the particular groups of symptoms that are commonly found in FND and to which I live with;
Motor & Movement Symptoms;
- Shaking, mostly found in my arms or legs
- Uncontrollable and perhaps painful muscle spasms usually in my hands or feet.
- Uncontrollable movements such as jerks and twitches.
- Problems with walking such as dragging my leg and uneven steps causing many falls.
- Limb weakness within my arms or legs where it doesn’t feel normal or I can’t hold any weight through them.
- Paralysis with an inability to move any part of the body, usually on one side only but not always, which lasts a period of hours, days or longer. At present I have paralysis in the right side of my body which has been with me for many months.
- Swallowing difficulties where I can lose the ability to swallow or a it may feel like i have a lump in my throat.
- Difficulties with my speech when my words may become slurred, stuttered or even maybe lost temporarily altogether.
- Bladder and bowel problems which may include loss of sensation leading to incontinence and some kind of catheterisation.
- Dizziness is the feeling of being lightheaded and not in balance and sometimes feels like my surroundings are spinning.
- Being sensitive to light, sound, smell, touch or taste is a ongoing familiar symptom.
- Nerve pain often feels like my skin is crawling with bugs and sometimes gives me electric shock sensations.
- Memory difficulties and/or loss.
- Poor concentration.
- Word finding difficulty.
Other areas that can be associated with FND can be;
This is life as I know it and at present there is little known about FND, so my medications and treatment plans are very much being trialled. It is very much invidualised to my particular journey. It is my mission to raise awareness and funds so that more research can be done to help myself and so many others find a way to live free of functional neurological disorder.
I would love to connect with you, if you or someone you know, also lives with FND. Please connect with me here or perhaps on one of my social media accounts.
LR The barefoot goddess