I thought you all might be interested in this...whenever a person googles a certain phrase and lands on my site (I cannot believe that I just used "google" as a verb, ha!). I'm able to see what that phrase is. Don't worry, I don't get any personal information or anything like that. lol. I'm in too much pain to care even if I did (chuckle).
However, being able to see what is most googled (about costochondritis) has been fascinating. So below, you will find the most popular questions googled about costo. Wild, huh?
I'm no doctor...so the following are all of your questions and just my opinions for answers. You knew I was going to write that. No need for some crazy "BUT LUCY TOLD ME TOO!!!!!!!!!!!!" lol. You have a brilliant brain, so use it wisely. Just think of all my blog posts as a part of your journey. Pieces to your puzzle. This crazy, jigsaw, jacked up, messed up puzzle titled, "I'm being stalked by Costo. gag."
- Can I get Costochondritis from weight lifting? Yes Yes Yes. Scroll down and you'll find the post on it. That, scoliosis, and stress is how I got it. Gag. Blah. Eww. The costo-sternal joints are not the the strongest part of our body. With inflammation, irritation, and low blood flow, this area is a susceptible target for inflammation and injury.
- Can I die from Costochondritis?- No. Costochondritis is not fatal. The pain may kill you, but the condition won't.... it's a joke, people. Just a chuckle. No one is dying from the pain. If you have Costochondritis alone, you are in no danger, just heaps of pain. Hence, very important to get all major conditions ruled out. You want to make sure that your symptoms are Costo. alone.
- Does Costochondritis make your back hurt? Mercy, yes. Hunching over subconsciously to protect your chest/ribs causes stress on your back muscles, often causing a lot of pain. Also, I've been told the pain in the chest can simply radiate to the back- going straight through. My back pain started 3 months after the chest pain. Sleeping on my back, good posture, stretching, walking, and medical massage therapy have alleviated the back pain my case. YES! A victory!
- Does Costochondritis show up on an x-ray? I have heard of a case or two where they saw the inflammation on the x-ray (such as from the comment on this post- thx Melissa). Unfortunately, most often, it doesn't show up this way. Bummer. It's usually diagnosed through physical exam. Getting diagnosed is half the battle.
- How long will it take to heal? Friends, I wish I knew. This is the million dollar question. Everyone is different. Click on my post in the right column for more info. on this question. Anywhere from 2 weeks to a life time. I know....Eek, gag, crap, sigh, and REALLY? .......Think of your body as an equation. A+B+C=D. It's up to each of us to figure out the different variables in our own case. The cause of your pain is the best place to start. Was it from lifting a baby? Did you get it by repetitive light trauma, like painting? Stress? Did you get it from playing sports? Did you get it b/c you have poor eating habits and your stomach, liver, kidneys, or colon are crying out for a cleanse and better food? I'm not sure. But you really have to take inventory of your body. And I know...we are all like, "we don't have TIME FOR THIS!" But folks. You will have to make time. Because Costo is one stubborn SOB.
- Where do you feel the pain of Costochondritis? Most often, but not always, the pain is felt in the 3-6th ribs. Most often it is seen on the left side- where the under wire of the bra is located. It can range from constant dull pressure to sharp stabbing "attacks" pain. I have them both. Joy. You can have pain when breathing, exercising, laughing, picking up any objects, eating large meals. Basically, if you exist, you can feel the pain. lol. I know, I know....not funny. =)
- Can Costochondritis be caused BY acid reflux? If you have acid reflux and costo...instead of thinking, "oh crap, this really sucks." You should be very thankful. This means you can really focus on your diet and do some cleanses and you could possibly be feeling better in a couple of months! If you have acid reflux...change your diet TODAY. Eat Organic foods and stay away from nightshade foods (foods that cause inflammation). Consider doing a full body cleanse. If you have acid reflux, it's a huge sign that your intestines are NOT happy with you. This could possibly be one of the causes of Costo. for you. And that is awesome! So don't waste any more time. Get it under control! I know, I'm ranting. =) I can't help it.
- Does Costochondritis CAUSE acid reflux? No. Intestinal issues cause Acid Reflux and costochondritis, not the other way around. Just my opinion.
- Can/Will a bone scan show Costochondritis? If you have infectious costochondritis from an infection, yes, some times it can show up in a bone scan. I have had a bone scan, it showed nothing. This is most likely since I have inflammatory Costochondritis caused by scoliosis, stress, bracing, acid reflux, and a stomach that needed serious cleansing and help with the foods I'm eating.
- Can stress cause costochondritis? Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. It is often called the "bracing disease." I totally recommend skilled relaxation exercises daily. Scroll down to see the skilled relaxation exercise I use.
- Should I go swimming with Costochondritis? It's different for everyone. Try it once and you'll know immediately. I cannot swim at ALL. Very Very painful for me. Some percentage of people do better when swimming. Unfortunately, you will have to do some trial and error with Costo. Blah.
- What type of doctor will/can diagnose costochondrtitis? Any doctor who is familiar with Costochondritis can diagnose it. The key is finding that doctor. I have found certain general practitioners and pain management doctors to be the most knowledgeable.
- Can Costochondritis cause pain in the upper back and shoulder too? YES!
- Does/can Costochondritis pain come and go daily? Yes. If yours comes and goes, be VERY thankful for this. It means you are closer to healing that those with constant pain.
- Can I/should I stretch with Costochondritis? Yes. Very gently. Scroll below for stretches.
- Should I work out if I have Costoshondritis? Yes. Walking is great. You want to be as stress free as possible. Walking/working out relieves stress, allowing you to sweat out toxins, and keeps your muscles loose. Some people also believe that the only way to heal this condition is for the ribs to oscillate. Kind of like oiling up the joints. You can get your ribs to oscillate with skilled relaxation breathing exercises and/or light jogging or working out in ways that get the ribs moving via breathing heavier than your resting heart rate.
- Can an under wire bra cause Costochondritis? Yes. Or it may just be the straw that breaks the camels back. Just my opinion. Scroll down and read the post on this subject..
- Can Large Breasts cause Costochondrits? Not the breasts themselves, but the bra (that you have to wear to support the weight) can. And/or the weight of the breasts can put lots of pressure on your ribs, causing or contributing to costo. I'm no expert in this area. lol. ha-ha! But I do know that this is a VERY common question.
- Will a Breast Reduction help? I do know of a couple of women who went this route. It helped some ladies and didn't help others.
- Why can't a doctor help me? This is the 2 million dollar question. Here's the bottom line. Costochondritis accounts for 3 out of 10 people that go to the emergency room with chest pain. Crazy. One would think with such statistics, this condition would be well known and talked about ALL the time. My little ol' opinion is that since our condition is not deadly, it's quickly dismissed. And unless a doctor has lived through the crippling pain of Costo....to them it's just "inflammation."
- Does Costochondritis burn? Yes. It can burn, stab, spasm, be lots of pressure, mimic a heart attack, etc.
- What makes it worse? Everything! Moving, breathing, talking, running, laughing, picking up objects, coughing, throwing up, cold weather, sitting for long periods of time, driving and ...etc....
- Is costochondritis affected by the seasonal changes? Yes. Whether it's allergy induced inflammation due to Spring, or Bracing induced pain due to the cold weather, yes, both weather and seasons can affect Costo.
- Does Caffiene make my Costo worse? Yes. Scroll down to read the post on caffeine and Costo.
- Will a full body cleanse heal my costo? Not sure. But it's totally worth a try. I'm in the middle of one and will let you know how it goes!
- What natural remedies can heal my Costo? Mercy...scroll way down to read the mammoth post I wrote on this. =)
- How do I not go crazy? Good question...sigh. I know...this condition affects every aspect of your life. It's very tough. In the middle of this monsoon of a storm, my sanctuary has been spending time soaking up the bible, lots of journaling, praying, and basking in the peace of God before I go to bed. This is has been my sanity. This is where I find peace.