I have an unfortunately long list of medical conditions. Since I do not always want to write all these out when I refer to them in my posts, so I have decided to make this. My Cheatcode is a quick list I can link into my blogs that readers use to see exactly what I have been diagnosed with, how long I’ve suffered from it, and what age I was officially diagnosed. Here we go!
Experienced since birth and diagnosed at age 4.
A facial maloclussion is a rare, genetic mutation that causes malformation of the jaw. My malformation causes my jaw to be overly elongated and pushed downward. I also have a severe underbite; none of my teeth touch together aside from the very last four in the back of my mouth. This causes constant pain in my jaw, neck, and shoulders. It also means that I have trouble eating, speaking and breathing, and it makes me look a bit different than most others. Aside from the pain in my jaw, it contributes to my weekly migraines, causes constant toothaches and jaw spasms that last anywhere from days to weeks; I call theses Charley horses in my face. They are the worst.
Experienced since teens and diagnosed at age 15.
Anaphylaxis, also known as Anaphylactic Shock, is a severe and possible fatal allergic reaction. From the time I was 15 to the time I was 21, I had 16 episodes. It is described as idiopathic because despite having 13 food allergies as well as other allergies, it could sometimes not be determined why I was going into shock. Thankfully, I have not had a reaction since, though I always keep an Epi-Pen on me, just in case. The episodes I had were frightening and every time my life was threatening. I hope I never have to experience them again.
Experienced since birth and diagnosed at age 17.
Celiac Disease, also known as Celiac Sprue or Coeliac Disease, is an autoimmune disease that affects the small intestine. Many of use who have Celiac Disease greatly benefit from strict Gluten Free diets. Though it mainly affects the intestine, it also has dozens of other symptoms and is linked to many other diseases. For me specifically, it also affects my muscles, joints, teeth, brain, stomach, hands, and skin.
Experienced since childhood and diagnosed at age 17.
Orthostatic Hypotension is a disorder that causes my blood pressure to not only be low, but to jump within 20 points whenever I move positions. The symptoms include bouts of dizziness, nausea, brain fog, and it contributes to my Vasovagal Syncope episodes that cause me to pass out and fully lose consciousness when triggered.
Experienced since childhood and diagnosed at 16.
Vasovagal Syncope is a disorder that causes a sudden, unexpected drop in heart rate and blood pressure; this often leads to fainting. Many people who suffer from it have different triggers. In my instance, my hypotension, overheating, sudden pain, extreme physical and emotional stress all trigger my episodes. The episodes themselves cause severe overheating, nausea, vomiting, loss of consciousness (and hallucinations while unconscious), and spasming. It usually takes a day or so to get over an episode. Due to my many episodes throughout my life, I now have a spinal Syrinx (see next section).
Syrinx in Spinal Cord
Experienced since age 25 and diagnosed at age 25.
A Syrinx is a tear in the spinal cord caused by a trauma (in my case, falling down too many times from Vasovagal Syncope). When there is a tear, it fills up with spinal fluid, creating a cyst. The cyst, if aggravated, can inflame and push down on my spinal cord and nerves, which is one of the most excruciating things I’ve ever experienced (and for me, that’s really saying something!) Though it is tiny right now and does not require surgery, it may later on in my life. For now, I mostly have to avoid aggravating it. This includes no roller coasters, no heavy lifting, no sports and being hyper aware of my neck at all times as to not wretch it on accidental and cause inflammation.
Experienced since teens and diagnosed at age 19.
Chronic Migraines are tiny T-Rexes driving bulldozers that smash into your temples. Okay, well that isn’t the medical definition, but it certainly feels like it. If you’d like me to be an adult about it, migraines are mostly commonly described as severe headaches accompanied by vision disturbances and severe nausea. I get one every three to four days, and though I try to ignore most of them, some will cause me to go completely out of order and fall into bed like a miserable little wretch. It is possible that my facial maloclussion contributes to my migraines.
Experienced since childhood and diagnosed at age 19.
Depression is a little tricky to describe, but I suppose the best description I’ve found for it is characterizing it as a mood disorder. Because it is not quite as simply explained as my physical disorders, I’ll refer you to one of my blog posts about living with depression in order for you to understand more.
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Generalized Anxiety Disorder ~ experienced since childhood ~ diagnosed at age 19
Spinal Stenosis~ experienced since childhood ~ diagnosed at age 21
Juvenile Arthritis/ Osteoarthritis~ experienced since age 7 ~diagnosed at age 23
Endometriosis and Adnomeyosis~ experienced since teens~diagnosed at age 24
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome ~experienced since teens~ diagnosed at age 25
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome ~ recent ~ diagnosed at age 25
PTSD ~ experienced since childhood ~diagnosed age 26