Although we may have enjoyed fireworks long ago, those of us with MS, Neurological Diseases and PTSD run and hide from the snaps, crackles and booms that come with the beautiful displays.
The sudden, loud sounds are a severe shock to the system, causing agitation, unease and downright panic in some. A lot of people around us don’t understand this reaction at all and may make light of it or just brush us off as “Nervous Nellies”… The equivalent of being cowardly or unable to handle a little fun.
It’s at times of national celebrations, such as our 4rth Of July today in the US, that a large part of our population tries to hide from the noises, many curling up under the blankets until it’s all over. With that in mind, here are some tips you might find useful :
If you’re ok in crowds, you could still watch the outdoor celebrations while wearing ear plugs plus noise cancelling headphones…. Don’t forget your insect repellent, those bites can add to your agitation.
IF you can’t go out in the summer heat like me, here are the tricks I use to get through it all.
1. I take an herb or prescription med to calm nerves before any noises begin (and in Arkansas, where fireworks are legal) my “calming” supplements start early in the day. I use 5mg of Valium or kava kava with chamomile+lavender iced tea as needed through the day and evening. Never take kava with any CNS suppressants or muscle relaxers !
2. When fireworks really get going I put in earplugs and wear noise cancelling headphones to listen to radio or a book. If you don’t have these things you can turn up a radio or your tv to drown out the outside noise.
3. I wear my sunglasses to shut out bright flashes.
4. I let myself have any treat I want….hmm, I’d better check my freezer right now for coffee gelato and Chunky Monkey !
If you have any tips please tweet them so others can find the relief they need and I hope you can enjoy your holiday.. Just give yourself extra special care.