Friday, November 19, 2010

Not as much of a fan

Yesterday was better than today.

I went for my super special cleaning this morning.  They use topical numbing agent because they get way down in your gums and such.  Well, he didn't use enough or get it in all the right places.  Some spots were a little painful as he was digging around!

I was told to start using a battery operated toothbrush to do a better job.  I have prescription mouth rinse to use and have to go back in 6 weeks.

The visit was nearly as bad as it could have been, but I'm still not such a fan!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

No, I can't open any wider!

Yep, I went to the dentist today.

I loved my MD dentist.  She had taken care of my teeth since I got out of the military.  Before sclero.  so, she had been through all the changes and she was great!  Visits were never easy.  We always had to figure out ways to get x-rays and fit the dental tools in there.  sometimes, we'd fail and I'd end up with sores in the corners of my mouth from stretching it open.  She was great, none the less.

I was apprehensive about going to a new dentist.  Always scared that they'll never have worked with sclero patients before.  That they won't be patient or understanding or have a good "chair-side manner."

Fortunately, everyone at my new dentist's office was great.  The x-ray technician worked really hard to get the few x-rays she could.  There's no way the adult things would fit in my mouth.  She tried with the kids tools and even those were too big.  So, she improvised.  She didn't get the full set they usually do, but she got enough to make the dentist happy.  He said we'll worry about more detailed ones as we go, if we need them.

The dentist was easy on me.  He did say "you can't open any wider?"  Just once.  LOL.

I have been bad and haven't been to the dentist in about a year.  I just need a really good cleaning to get started and then we'll be on schedule for regular 6 month visits.

Whew!  That was much easier than I expected.

And I'm ok with that!

Choosing the right OB/GYN

We all know how much women LOVE going to see the OB/GYN.  I think it must be ranked right up there with root canals on our list of "fun things to do."

Choosing one of these doctor's is just as fun!  You always want a doctor to be someone you like.  They are after all taking care of your health and well-being.  You want someone makes you feel comfortable.  Someone you trust.  Someone who knows what they're doing.

Definitely the case when you're picking someone to "get all up in your lady business"

After the military, I was lucky to find a gyn that was great.  I loved her.  I was a little sad to "let her go."  She didn't do anything wrong.  She was great.  However, after I was diagnosed, she and I decided that I should probably transfer to the gyn that "the man" had suggested, as she has worked with other Sclero patients and would best be able to work with me from then on out.

My new gyn was great!  She rocked.  I loved her too.  She was young, but knowledgeable of Sclero and VERY helpful.  Had great suggestions for issues and how to deal with things.  She referred us to the good doc who we worked with for IVF.

Now, the issue is, I'm a bit behind on getting my exam and she was booked up last time I was in MD for appointments.  Do I wait and try to get in with her when I go back in May for appointments or do I try to find a new gyn here in FL?  Do I want someone young or someone who's older with more experience?

I'm thinking I might just push the appointment off for a little bit and try to get in with her when I go in May.  Might just be the easiest route.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Spoke Too Soon

I have an ulcer on my index finger.  A very painful and annoying ulcer.

I also have one on the knuckle of my left ring finger.  I'm trying to ignore that one in the hopes that it will dissolve and disappear without turning into an oozing bandage needing pain in the...

The one on my index finger makes me mad.  First of all, it hurts VERY bad.  Second of all, it's right in the spot of my finger that I use to do EVERYTHING.  Mostly it makes me mad because I caused it.  Not on purpose of course.  I didn't know I was causing it.  But now I know I did.

Any prolonger pressure or rubbing on my fingertips and knuckles can cause these lovely little gems.  I didn't take this into account when I was making bracelets.  I was happy because I found some forceps that I can use to handle the beads.  I made some bracelets, then noticed holding the forceps was causing some indentations on my thumb and index finger.  So, I added some of the rubber grippy things and that seemed to help.  I must not have done it soon enough.

Yesterday that spot on my finger was sore.  Today, there's full-blown ulcered skin there.  UGH!  The question is, How long will it last?  Will it be quick?  Will it dissipate on it's own?  Will I be stuck with bandages again?  All, right before I'm planning to make a nice Thanksgiving feast this weekend and right before we head off on vacation.

Funny how one little thing can ruin my whole day!  I have dishes, laundry, and cat boxes to do ... and I can already foresee a day filled with bitching, a melt-down or two and maybe some yelling at inanimate objects.


Friday, November 12, 2010

Just a little status update

No major changes that I can think of on the Scleroderma front.

I'm still bandage free - for three months in a row now!  THAT is a happy thought.

All of my sores have healed without incident.  There was one on a knuckle I was worried about when it first "surfaced" but it came and went with no big, deep, scabs or pussy crap or anything.

It's been cooler here lately so, I have to watch out for Raynaud's more.  We spent last weekend at Disney & Epcot and I had to wear my winter jacket and mittens the entire time.  I didn't have any issues though.  Just did my best to stay ahead of things and stay warm.

Yoga and riding have both gotten more intense and become great therapy and workouts.  I'm seeing actual physical results.

If I forget a day of Prednisone, I certainly know it by the next day.  My joints really do hurt and ache.  As long as I remember, things seem to go ok.

The only complaint I have right now is likely the complaint I'll have forever - these crappy-ass hands!  They suck, but I'm dealing.  With the advent of no ulcers on my knuckles, my hands are really becoming more manageable.  They still suck.  I'm still slow.  I still drop EVERYTHING.  They are still sensitive.  But, I'm adapting.  I'm learning.  I'm finding tools to help.

So, as long as I stay out of the a/c or the temps below 75, remember my prednisone, and keep on getting my exercise, things seem to stay pretty smooth.


Monday, November 1, 2010


In addition to an easy location for the JHU Scleroderma Center's Newsletters, I've also added a "live chat." I will try to host a monthly live chat session for any Sclero patients, friends, or families that would like to participate.

Check back soon - I'll post the date and time of the first chat in just a few days.