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Fibromyalgia, Anxiety, Depression - Help!

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by nursingmymind nursingmymind (New) New

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I am a nurse with depression, anxiety, and fibromyalgia. I work in the hospital where I am required to do rotational shift work ie: day, day, night or day, night, night followed by 4-5 days off. I have been working back on the inpatient unit for 7 months now and I feel like my depression, anxiety, and fibromyalgia have all been flared up lately. I've had to take quite a few sick days this month due to a major flare up in symptoms. I am going to have to meet with my manager about sick time and I am so worried!

I honestly feel terrible all the time, it is such a struggle to get through my 12 hour shifts even on a "good" day.

I wonder if any of you also struggle with any of these conditions and if you have any tips for me?

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hppygr8ful has 15 years experience and specializes in Psych, Addictions, Elder Care, L&D.

6 Followers; 3 Articles; 2,930 Posts; 33,167 Profile Views

I am a nurse with depression, anxiety, and fibromyalgia. I work in the hospital where I am required to do rotational shift work ie: day, day, night or day, night, night followed by 4-5 days off. I have been working back on the inpatient unit for 7 months now and I feel like my depression, anxiety, and fibromyalgia have all been flared up lately. I've had to take quite a few sick days this month due to a major flare up in symptoms. I am going to have to meet with my manager about sick time and I am so worried!

I honestly feel terrible all the time, it is such a struggle to get through my 12 hour shifts even on a "good" day.

I wonder if any of you also struggle with any of these conditions and if you have any tips for me?

Ok so I suffer from all of the above though the anxiety is pretty much under control these days. It is against TOS to give medical advise so if you really feel this terrible the first thing I would suggest is a complete work-up with your primary care physician or any specialists that you see for the fibromyalgia and depression. That being said I will tell you some of the things that work for me.

I have found that with my fibromyalgia (all cases are different) the key to healthy function is solid restful sleep. I'm and worrier and insomniac by nature so good sleep is relative but if I get a good solid 5 to 6 hour block of sleep each day it seems to make everything better. Eat a healthy diet. Start each day with a warm shower and some Tia Chi to gently stretch and drink lots of good organic green tea. I am actually in a pretty bad flare up on the fibro right now but the whole family knows to leave mom be when she gets home to decompress and rest.

A physician's documentation for each time you miss work is essential in these situations as it shows your employer that you are seeking help to get better and be more productive. Find some balance in your life. It may be that rotating shifts is not appropriate as is seriously disrupts the sleep cycle.

Good luck and hope you feel better

Hppy

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10 Posts; 1,070 Profile Views

Thank you so much for the reply! It's njce to know that others out there can relate. See definitely helps with all of my symptoms and I think switching from days to nights and back to days is really making that difficult. Thanks for the tip on stretching and tai chi :)

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walkingrock has 40 years experience as a ADN and specializes in NICU, IBCLC.

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I also have fibromyalgia and have had anxiety and depression. Rotatating shifts would be awful for my fibromyalgia. Night shift is less than optimal for fibromyalgia also, but you might find it better than rotating and your employer might allow that. Best of wishes.

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10 Posts; 563 Profile Views

flma for ongoing issue so it covers ur absenses

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TriciaJ has 39 years experience as a RN and specializes in Psych, Corrections, Med-Surg, Ambulatory.

12 Followers; 3,554 Posts; 36,477 Profile Views

Rotating shifts?  Where are you?  They're still ubiquitous in Canada, fairly rare in the US.  I think a regular shift (even nights) would stand to improve things.

Any way you could get off rotating?  A note from your doctor, a different position, a different employer?

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sorensic has 6 years experience as a MSN, RN.

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To follow up on Tricia, I am very interested what region you work.  I'm actually living Canada and intend to go back to the U.S. because I cannot stand rotating shifts!  Employers here in Canada cannot accommodate in many provinces because the union bargaining basically forces everyone to rotate.  There are many staff who would prefer straight nights.  No issues getting straight nights in the USA :-).  

If you don't live in Canada, the easy solution I have for you is to consider moving to an employer who can put you on straight days or nights.  I know that is easier said than done if you have family ties and regional issues that prevent you from changing employers (e.g. rural vs urban).

If you live in Canada, it sounds like you might need to focus on a specialty area that is not 24 hours in order to get on a solid stable day shift.  Certain positions only have office hours Monday-Friday.

Rotating shifts are terrible for one's health even without the medical conditions that you described.  I don't have fibromyalgia but I do have chronic headaches and more mild concerns, yet I cannot possibly see myself surviving rotating shifts long term.

As a last resort, you may be able to force your employer to accommodate you based on disability documentation, but this would likely need to be amassed over several months with years-long track records that implore the employer to accommodate you.

Edited by sorensic

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