Getting Through Lupus Fog to a Clear Mind
Last updated: April 2022
I've been looking for my glasses while they were on my face. Searching high and low for my phone as I was talking on it. The scary moments when I drove down the wrong side of the street. That lupus brain fog has gotten me good at times. Does anyone else have some foggy days like this? Do you have those days that you begin and don’t realize how you got to the end of the day in one piece?
Lupus fog woes
When these activities started, I thought I was going crazy. I felt so out of control and scared. It all seemed to come on so quickly. There seemed to be no rhyme or reason to this issue. As a result of feeling lost, I did some research.
What is lupus fog?
According to the Lupus Foundation of America, an estimated 70-90 percent of lupus warriors will experience lupus brain fog. It can be mild or severe and varies from lupus warrior. Brain fog can be a form of central nervous system involvement. Mostly known as cognitive dysfunction, it is usually described as confusion, fatigue, memory loss, and even difficulty in expressing thoughts.
How is lupus fog seen in lupus warriors?
Dealing with lupus brain fog can make it hard to concentrate or focus. Additionally, it can hinder a lupus warrior's ability to remember recent events and not be able to process new information. I've had a hard time doing everyday things. Things like remembering dates and important appointments or brushing my teeth.
Ultimately, I spoke with my rheumatologist about it. He helped me learn how to deal with my lupus fog. After explaining to me how it can manifest in my body, we were able to create tips to combat and prevent brain fog incidents.
Helpful tips to deal with lupus fog
There are several things I tried to combat lupus brain fog.
Get enough sleep
Firstly, I focused on my sleeping patterns. I wasn’t getting enough sleep on those foggy days. Sleep is so important in combating lupus brain fog. It helps your body regenerate, repair, and heal.
Journal food, appointments, and more
Secondly, I began to journal my activities, food, and appointments. I wrote them all on paper and typed them on my phone. The more I repeated things, the easier it was to remember to get them done. Setting reminders on my phone was helpful as well as writing sticky notes all over the house and car. Doing these things makes it easier to keep on track when lupus brain fog is coming on or while I am in a fog in the present moment.
Movement and mindfulness
Thirdly, it was important to move my body. Whether it was walking, working out in the gym, or dancing, I had to move and stimulate my body and brain. Moving daily helps me fight fatigue and improve my memory. Sometimes it was and still is difficult to get moving. Although hard, I know in the end the physical exercise is beneficial to my well-being overall.
Take breaks to deal with brain fog
Finally, I learned how important it was to take breaks. Teaching myself to be mindful of my entire body through deep breathing and meditation. A lot of anxiety can come from dealing with lupus brain fog. I had to find different ways to ease the anxiety. When I stopped to break, I was able to allow the fog to pass. Deep breathing helped me focus on the present moment.
Learning to control brain fog
The action I put into helping myself combat lupus fogs has been very helpful. Yes, I still have some foggy moments, but they are less than they were. For that I am grateful.
Lupus fog can manifest during your flares and with stress. It’s important to learn how to control your actions to assist you in dealing with and preventing foggy days. Getting to a clear mind is the goal. Always contact your doctor to see if other suggestions can help. Your doctor can also evaluate you to make sure it isn't something more serious.
Have you experienced lupus brain fog? What type of things have you done during a lupus fog that made you worried? Let me know in the comments.
How are you most likely to respond when someone offers you unsolicited advice about your lupus?