Through journaling I have been able to identify several triggers. A trigger is something that can cause me to begin an episode. Like a ticking time-bomb. A trigger is not a “cause” of the disorder. Many factors pile on top of each other, until the stack blows. A trigger might just push me over the edge, when I would have avoided an episode otherwise. Triggers can change, and mine have changed numerous times over my 8 year course of illness. Some triggers cease to be triggers, and new ones arise. It’s an ever-changing process.
Here is a list of my known triggers, past and present:
- Hormones (my own and the ones I’ve put into my body) and menstrual cycle
- Positive Excitement (holidays, vacations, social activities, and anything I’m excited to do)
- Emotional Stress (I have mood dysregulation)
- Hot weather (it depletes my energy)
- Exhaustion and/or lack of sleep
- Anxiety and/or panic attacks
- Physical illness (like a cold or flu)
- Fatty, greasy, or deep-fried foods
- Gravy of any type
- Tomato paste
- Excessive alcohol
- MSG and other preservatives
- High protein meals
Here is a list of things that don’t necessarily trigger me, but are commonly known to trigger others with CVS. I avoid the last 4 items on this list for various reasons.
- Aged cheese
- Aspartame (artificial sweetener)
- Nitrites (used to preserve meat)
If you have a trigger that I haven’t listed here, please share it with everyone. I learn new triggers frequently, and it is always helpful to hear what others have learned to avoid also.