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Adrienne Dellwo

Late-Summer Weariness with Fibromyalgia

By August 21, 2013

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We're starting into my worst time of year for fibromyalgia symptoms. I'm so not looking forward to it!

I can feel what I call "late-summer weariness" settling in. It's too hot to do anything outside, especially with my new, medication-induced sun sensitivity. The air conditioner can't quite keep up, so the house is too hot, which wears me down. Temperature sensitivity has my hands and feet puffy and aching, and I can't get my wedding ring on at all. Once my forehead and the back of my neck start sweating, I can't get them to stop.

And looming ahead - the change of weather, which really seems to bother me. My kids go back to school in two weeks, which will throw off my already dysfunctional sleep schedule and make our schedule busier. They'll bring home all those germs that beat up on my pitiful immune system, so I'll be sick regularly.

All of these things conspire every late-summer/early fall to make me achy, run down, foggy, and all around not good. I know that extra pacing, rest, and keeping up with my treatments helps, but so far I haven't been able to find anything that really takes the "bleh" out of it.

I've come to accept that my flower beds will never be properly cleaned out in the fall, and that my daughter's birthday (in October) and all of the holidays that follow will creep up on me. I usually start to feel caught up around Valentine's Day. My fibro behaves itself best in the spring and early summer, but this year, the arthritis hit hard then and tanked my productivity.

When it comes to holidays, I really have to plan ahead, because otherwise it's the day before and I'm utterly unprepared. A long-time fibromite in my forum offered up her holiday survival plan several years ago, and when I stick to it, the season goes much more smoothly. It's here: The Holiday Survival Guide.

Does this time of year bother you? What are your best and worst times? Does anything help you get through the rough season(s)? Leave your comments below!

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August 22, 2013 at 1:24 pm
(1) judy deese says:

A. Hello, I know summer is a Bi…! I am in the 3rd month of the study you reported, U of Alabama at Tuscaloosa . Very nice people. They even check on me via email. My local doc said ” find out the meds and I will right them. Dr. Prigdon, a surgeon, just happened upon finding 90% of fms sufferers have Herpes 1 with or without fever blisters. I am now 3 months into the treatment. Takes 6 to 9 months. Started sleeping a lot. He checked on me and said FMS might disappear any day. I did feel better but then the rain came and so did the pain. This doc is independent from U of A but is now in his 10th year studying with Dr. Duffy. They just sold the scrip to a drug company. I Know what it consist of but am Leary to disclose. You ask me I will tell OK? If this works OMG! My spelling of doc prig maybe compromised. Dr. Duffy by phone said you are awake between 2 and 5am right? What are you watching me? They are on to something. I will follow thru. My local doc said it would not surprise him a bit to find Herpes1 . It has retro factors such as HIV reinventing it’s lovely self. Contact me if you like ,use your website address as my screwed up computer might put your mail in my junk. Judy

August 23, 2013 at 12:40 am
(2) Sandy Thornton says:

The humidity is about to kill me and I am like a rag and sleep all day.

August 23, 2013 at 3:35 pm
(3) blue says:

This time of the year is horrible for me
Exhausted from the heat *I live where it is normal to have 112 every day* Working with pain and the heat takes its toll and by October and the kids in school I am catching all the germs and bugs !!
I do not worry now about the holidays I will work it out then For me its just take each day at a time Otherwise it will really be way too over whelming
Ice packs Cherry juice massages and getting as much sleep as I can *which is not easy* is the best thing I can do for myself
It can be depressing but I do set aside time every day for me Bubble baths and yoga This is for me!!

August 23, 2013 at 4:41 pm
(4) Ken Lamm PT says:

As a physical therapist treating many fibromyalgia patients and for myself having arthritis since age 12, many people are affected by both barometric changes and the ion fluctuations, which occur during the summertime. Feeling lethargic, swollen and aching is typical during those times. Many find it hard to concentrate anyway, but when the mind is blocking the pain, the brain cannot think clearly.

August 23, 2013 at 4:44 pm
(5) Gail says:

September is always awful for me as August allergies give me terrible asthma, and then my whole system goes out of whack. I seem to end up in a big funk by mid-September. Today my feet are swollen and my bones feel broken. Luckily we don’t get too many days over 90 degrees as those are killer.

August 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm
(6) barb says:

Would love to know what you are receiving because I can barely put one foot in front of the other one.Hope I hear from you.

August 23, 2013 at 5:37 pm
(7) Dianne says:

The change of seasons is always the worst time for me, especially summer into fall. I feel more aching, more tired, more foggy. Fall is one of the most beautiful times of the year and love to paint and take photos but I barely feel like getting off the couch most of the time. By the time the end of winter rolls around I’ve about had it. The holiday season does me in entirely whether I do the entertaining or someone else does it. It’s all just too much. I think I need to move to a more temperate climate. I don’t know what the real solution is, but I wish there was an easier one than moving to a tropical locale.

August 23, 2013 at 11:15 pm
(8) Texas Carol says:

Judy…I beg you, please send me the drug mix they are using.

I read up on it some time back, I have all the signs…blisters,
wake up every early am, etc

My Hubby recently dropped dead at 52 and I take care of
Mother w/Alzheimer’s alone now…I’m going down.

E-mail me at csmithhewitt1@yahoo.com GOD bless you!

August 24, 2013 at 11:21 am
(9) John C Finley says:

I was diagnosed with Fibro 40 years ago and just restarted OT and PT and after my first active session, I felt as if everything got worse. I made it home, but then for over 4 hours could hardly move for the pain. My pain is generally only in my hips, knees, ankles with moderate aching in my leg muscles. After the therapy, there wasn’t a bone that didn’t scream at me. I am 73 now and am on Lyrica, Savella plus my doctor is afraid that I will get diabetes. With additional medications my blood pressure is good, but I still weigh 230 pounds from lack of good exercise. I get a daily aspirin and Vitamin D, plus Metformin, Metropol and one other anti-diabetes drug. Any suggestions?

August 24, 2013 at 2:30 pm
(10) Marie says:

I thought that it was just me who is struggling with August this year! Very tired, lack of energy, swollen hands unable to wear my wedding ring, excessive sweating and fibro-fog have me exhausted; plus the fact that I have been wearing a boot cast for five weeks due to an old but reoccurring Achilles problem.

August 24, 2013 at 3:34 pm
(11) Eric Johnson says:

I remember when I was a teenager (45 + years ago) and long before I knew anything was “wrong with me-besides being diagnosed with mono. August was always my worst month and since it’s when football practice started, it was difficult to find the energy. Now that I’m considered disabled and don’t/can’t have to do very much, it’s easier.

August 25, 2013 at 3:18 pm
(12) Cindy E says:

I to have all those same symptoms and in dire need of anything that
could help me. If you could please send me any and all information
that could help I would be very appreciative. my email address is
cbcotton@yahoo dot com
Thank You

August 25, 2013 at 4:02 pm
(13) ken Lamm PT says:

John C Finley, if and when you return to therapy, tell them to do only 2-3 repetitions of each exercise rather than the usual 8-10. They can always come back and repeat the same exercise later. I find doing isometric strengthening works best rather than resistance from Theraband or weightlifting. Have them focus on posture and breathing to enhance the body’s ability to recover. Listen to your body and respect pain.

August 25, 2013 at 6:55 pm
(14) Connie Lynn says:

Judy, I also would love to know what you are taking. I can post my email address if you want. Please post back here if you can. Thank you.

August 26, 2013 at 2:00 am
(15) Trisha says:

Over 80-90% of the general population carries the Herpes Simplex type 1 virus (the one that causes oral “cold sores” ) so one would expect to find the same high percentage in FM sufferers.

August 26, 2013 at 4:56 am
(16) Debra An says:

I cannot live where it is too hot or too cold, that is why I live in San Diego, CA. I cannot stand the heat as I get dehydrated when it is too hot, as I continuously sweat. It feels like having hot flashes, even though doctors say I am too young for that. I guess they expect me to be in my late 50′s or 60′s for that to happen. When it is too hot I stay inside and turn up the ac. I pretty much use the ac her all year around. It does not snow where I live as I live close to the beach, but it does get colder. I just cannot stand not having the sun out as much as it is rather disturbing as I do not get much done, unless I stay up late outside. Which I have been known to stay up late, as late as midnight. If it is too cold my joints hurt, I never get out of bed earlier than 11am, unless I have a doctor’s appointment. I notice around 75 it is about just right for me. It really depends though on if my body feels like it is having hot flashes. My car does not know what it is like for the ac to be turned off, as it works all year round. I need air circulation to feel cool, and wearing shoes I hate as I regulate my temperature with my feet. It helps if I am too hot to put my feet on the travertine stones we have in the bathroom and in the foyer, which helps to cool me down.

August 26, 2013 at 12:01 pm
(17) Jim L. says:

Adrienne- Please, please, please keep in mind that the sunshine begins to lessen in the fall, hits bottom in the winter, and begins to increase in the spring. This leads to a genuine depression and loss of energy. It is called Season Affective Disorder, and is in the DSM. I bought a Hi-lux lamp from Apollo Lighting thirteen years ago at the suggestion of the (founder and) Director of the Mayo Clinic’s sleep program. It helps a great deal. Apollo has since been bought up by a big, slick company, and their web site is far less friendly and informative than when Apollo was a smallish California company that was at the forefront of research on this problem. Pass this important information along to all ME/FMS people.
God bless.

August 26, 2013 at 11:58 pm
(18) Krista says:

I have just finally let myself believe I have fibro. I told my PT and my Doc that I have it and they both went “DUH, we know you do.. we’ve told you that for awhile now.”. I just didn’t want to believe it. This late summer into fall is killing me. I am so lethargic and have bad fibro fog. It’s just annoying. I do pilates every day in some form which is my life saver! I can hardly go a day without stretching on a reformer machine. Anyway, I am new to all of this and I love reading the comments because they help me understand what is going on with my fibro. Thank you all!

August 27, 2013 at 10:55 am
(19) Maria says:

My worst time of year is all summer, as soon as it get really hot and humid for the first time that year. I live in NYC which is brutal — now it starts getting hot by the end of May and lasts through September. The air is also dirty and we regularly have “ozone alerts.” I really do like the length of the daylight, and being able to just go out in fun clothes without bundling up. However, since developing CFIDS and then going through early menopause (46) I cannot tolerate heat and humidity. It’s a shame, I remember when it was no big deal….

August 27, 2013 at 9:01 pm
(20) Jane Cenzura says:

Hello Judy, I really would like to know the meds you are on and any other advise the specialist suggested, the more information we can share the better it is for all sufferers. I find the fall and winter the worst seasons for me. If I am in contact with anyone that has a virus I am a terrible flare-up, even getting the flu shot (which I don’t get after the second time) but the flu shot had me in a fare-up, let alone if I get a cold or flu. Maybe you could leave the information with Adrienne to post for anyone to access, then people can discuss the option with there own doctors. Thanks Jane

August 30, 2013 at 3:53 pm
(21) MaryKay Gilbert says:

This has been my worst August ever~I’m absolutely dreading the fall/winter as the last one nearly killed me, literally~I made my 1st ever suicide attempt during a March snowstorm…barely dragged myself thru the summer, how will I ever make it thru another winter? I have 2 sons marrying next year, but after that will feel my life is over~I will be 58 this winter and feel an urgency to get everything in order in the next 2 yrs…I had this feeling, but no where near as bad~more of a strong desire to re-connect with old friends, right before being diagnosed with breast cancer 8 yrs ago…and of course I always think the worst~wondering if I had West Nile this summer? Just mopping my K floor totally exhausts me~can’t bear to go out in the heat…spend most of my time sleeping, reading or on the computer~praying that the Lord will either bring healing or take me Home! I’m so terribly discouraged.

August 30, 2013 at 4:34 pm
(22) Alpha says:

This time of year is the worst of all for me. I live in the Arizona desert so am not used to much humidity. This time of year is our “monsoon” season, with rain and much higher humidity. That, combined with the new A/C I bought two years ago has made Augusts pure hell for me. The new A/C blows much colder, according to new Federal guidelines, I’m told. To save money, I have to keep the ceiling fan on 24 hrsl. a day, which adds to my overall lousy feeling. Am thinking of buying a dehumidifier.

I feel so achy all over and fatigued. I have been diagnosed with both CFS and FM.

August 30, 2013 at 10:51 pm
(23) Joyce says:


August 30, 2013 at 10:59 pm
(24) joyce says:

Please, Judy. Send me any info. you have that might help. I have suffered with herpes as long as I can remember. I don’t want to be a bother, I KNOW WHAT WE DEAL WITH. I’ll send blessings your way as a Thank you.jkfitzgerel@gmail.com

August 31, 2013 at 12:39 am
(25) Joycene says:

I live in Florida and deal with the humidity and heat pretty much year round. I’ve had fibromyalgia for nearly twenty years. However, starting in mid-June of this year I started aching all over. I became so exhausted that I could barely get out of bed. My fingers hurt, my toes hurt, my back hurt, my everything hurt. For the first few days I assumed that I was having a very bad flare. However, it lasted for over seven weeks. Over the next few days I began feeling better and was amazed that I could get out of bed and make it easily to the bathroom in the morning. My doctor said that it might be just a flare, but I have never had one that lasted so long. Has anyone been through this? I was ready to give up.

August 31, 2013 at 12:39 am
(26) Joycene says:

I live in Florida and deal with the humidity and heat pretty much year round. I’ve had fibromyalgia for nearly twenty years. However, starting in mid-June of this year I started aching all over. I became so exhausted that I could barely get out of bed. My fingers hurt, my toes hurt, my back hurt, my everything hurt. For the first few days I assumed that I was having a very bad flare. However, it lasted for over seven weeks. Over the next few days I began feeling better and was amazed that I could get out of bed and make it easily to the bathroom in the morning. My doctor said that it might be just a flare, but I have never had one that lasted so long. Has anyone been through this? I was ready to give up.

August 31, 2013 at 5:20 am
(27) Dawn says:

I live in the uk (south Wales ) which rains a lot !!! But this year we’ve had a heat wave for the last three months and even though its been lovely to see the sun I’ve not been out much I’ve kept indoors !! It’s been good to at least be able to dry out doors and save on the cost of tumble drying !
But I’ve hurt all over. !!!! I’ve had surgery on imy hand for carpel tunnel and out of seven people having the same Surgery on the same day all older than me !! The oldest being 85 , I’m 51 my hand got infected and has taken the longest to heal and have now the worst scar !!! I’m hoping that will get better as time goes on ??
I will be getting the other hand done next !!!!!
I worry as the years go on that I will be getting worse and able to do less !
I never imagined this is how I would spend my fifties !! I should be going out and enjoying my life !!!! But I truly believe that having fibromyalgia has made me realise haw strong I am !!!! Because I know for a fact the people that have criticised me or not believed me would never be able to cope with this illness !!!!!!! That makes me feel strangely Impowered !!!!
Hope every one out there who suffer with these illnesses have a manageable fall and winter and bring on the spring !!!!!!!! Take care xx

September 1, 2013 at 7:10 pm
(28) Cynthia says:

Joycene “might be just a flare, but I have never had one that lasted so long. Has anyone been through this? I was ready to give up.”

Hi–I have missed pretty much June, July and August this year, down flat. In May, my doc said it sounded like I was going into a flare, but I think he was thinking of maybe a week-long thing? I feel like I’ve been through a mill! I did have one long face-plant about 14 years ago; lasted 5 weeks. I think this marathon run was a whack after about 5 months of very little rest or sleep caring for my mom. Normally it’s not this bad, but I have begun to wonder! September had better be better! This is life in the wacky world of fibro: fuddle along and every once in a while, fall on your face.
Here’s to getting on our feet again!

September 1, 2013 at 8:00 pm
(29) Sharon says:

Judy, Please send me the info. It sounds a lot like me.

p.s. Did you once see a dr. in Florida who claimed everyone has cancer of some sort?–or was that another Judy?

Thanks so much.


September 2, 2013 at 11:31 am
(30) Barb Davis says:

Summer is always a season I least look forward to. My all time fav is fall. Here in Chicagoland I can usually count on great weather….neither too hot or too cold. The gorgeous leaves changing colors puts me on a “natural” high. My fav temps are between 53and72 degrees. I wait all year for the few weeks of fall …and it’s worth the wait.

September 10, 2013 at 2:49 pm
(31) Tom says:

By the end of the Summer I’m worn out, the weed allergies start. The cooler weather is a big help. I do very short bits of projects and being able to read about a few minutes a day is about it. Fairly tough existence even though I have plenty of practice. Best wishes for you all

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