I will be the first person to admit, that I can overreact when things go wrong. Its something I really need to learn how to deal with better as stress always leads to pain, which can lead to a crisis. This year almost every trip I've had to the hospital has come after an event that stressed me out. I lost my job, had a crisis. Wrecked my car, had a crisis. Lost another job (through no fault of my own, company was downsizing) had a crisis. That is not a trend of 2009 that I want to take into 2010. Yet I can already feel myself stressing myself sick once again.

Almost everyday for the past 2weeks I've been experiencing pain, on a 1-10 I would say its a 6.3. Painful enough to slow me down, but its not quite enough that I want to go the hospital. I know some people with Sickle Cell do have daily pain, however I've never really had that problem so being in pain everyday for 2 weeks is very new to me. Normally I might have pain 2x a week and be fine and pain free the rest of the week. I've been having Insomnia, always tired but I can't sleep. The past 2 weeks have been so unlike how I normally am. And I know I'm having these health problems cause right now I'm stressed.

Does anyone else have the issue of getting sick when stress? And also how do you deal with your problems and the stress it brings?

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It's hard not to stress, especially when you are going through stressful situations, but I used to have a crises anything something major happened in my life. It didn't even have to be something bad, it could be something good like graduation, or a new job, and I would stress myself into a crises. I think the main precursors for me was, not taking care of my body, skimping on sleep, not drinking enough and not eating right. I tend to be a worrywort, but I've noticed that even when I worry, I can still stay crises free by putting the needs of my body first. Make sure you get a minimum of 7hours of sleep. Hydrate constantly. Take mini breaks through the day to relax. Do mental relaxation techniques where you breathe out all the stress. You have to find a way to deal with the stress, especially since it invariably always makes you sick. I hope this helps some.
Hey Nana,

I second what Sickle Cell Warrior said. I too go into crises when I'm stressed, busy or excited because during those times I neglect to hydrate, eat, take vitamins, sleep and relax enough. Coupled with the adrenaline that accompanies stress, something as simple as not taking my vitamins, folic acid and Nicosan can throw me into a crisis. So take care of yourself all the more during times of stress since that's when you are most susceptible to a crisis. I try to exercise several times a week to keep my stress levels down since I have high stress levels as a small business owner. I know people recommend for sickle cell patients not to exercise, but that is total crap. It is good advice for us not to overdo it; but avoiding exercise completely actually makes me sick more frequently. So I jog for 10 minutes or spend half an hour weight training daily to reduce stress and then get on top of my hydration etc to make sure I stay pain-free.

I will say stress is my worst enemy. I stress way too much and it ALWAYS puts me in the hospital. My SCD has gotten so bad this year because I took on too much. Working full time, School full time and life. My friends and family yell at me a lot for taking on too much and causing myself to get sick. This year alone 2011 I have spent more time in the hospital then in the past 5 years due to stress and other activities. As for not sleeping that is one of my biggest problems to. I have a really hard time sleeping and if I don’t get a good amount of sleep I can’t function in the morning. I don’t like to tell people this and some may not agree but I have a prescription for medical MJ and sometimes it helps a lot with pain management and sometime it makes it worse but it really does help me sleep at night and also helps me unstressed when I’m really stressed out.


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