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Practical Tips for Living Well with Fibro

Are You Always On Guard? This Is What It Means.

Are You Always On Guard?  This Is What It Means.

Do you notice that you are always looking out out for triggers, situations that might trip you up and are painfully aware of your surroundings?  All the time?  Do you worry about little things, feel agitated and are constantly tense?

These are signs of a state called hypervigilance and being in this state keeps you in a state of flight or fight.  And though hypervigilance is not an illness, it is thought to contribute to sensory overload as seen in individuals who suffer from PTSD after being in this state for too long or in the case of individuals who suffer with an excited nervous system as seen with fibromyalgia.

tensionThe idea is that our brains become overly aware of things, which can include painful stimuli, noises, bright lights, and general activity.

That could explain why our bodies react so painfully to a sensation that most people wouldn’t experience as painful (called allodynia), as well as why we’re sensitive to noise, light, chaotic environments and more.

With hypervigilance, not only do you notice things more readily, you’re likely to be unable to divert your attention from them. When something is beeping in the other room, you’ll notice it right away, be highly distracted by it, and probably become agitated if it doesn’t go away.

Next page: Living with Hypervigilance

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