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My Psoriatic Arthritis Journey

Two years after being diagnosed with psoriasis, I was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and fibromyalgia. I have never treated my PsA with pharmaceutical medications other than prescriptions for pain relief. The next five years were plagued with ovarian cysts, endometriosis, plus a botched hysterectomy and the surgeries it took to rectify it. This chaotic time in my life shifted my doctor’s and my own attention away from PsA. They never offered medications nor did I have time to research or ask for any. After those other issues were dealt with I had already began weaning myself off of the medication that I had been taking for fibromyalgia. The side effects that I experienced with that drug were almost as bad as the horrific symptoms I suffered while detoxing from it. When I finally began to research medications for PsA, I discovered that the risk of experiencing the same side effects was very high and decided against them. After a few years of combatting pain, insomnia, anxiety, and depression and never experiencing any improvement, I began the process of leading a pill-free life.

Leading a pill-free life

It took a year to wean off of those pills and to fully get them out of my system. I feared that my pain level would increase afterwards, but was surprised to discover that it decreased. My pain level returned to what it was when I was first diagnosed. While still painful, it was much less than when I was taking pharmaceutical medications. In my case, all of my prescription medications were making me sicker than I had to be. At this point I began to look into natural methods to treat my conditions. Thankfully at that time I had recently moved to a state in which medical marijuana was legal.

Medical marijuana as an option

Getting my medical marijuana recommendation was and still is the best thing that I could have ever done. My inflammation level dropped quickly. Prior to medicating in this manner I had lost use of a thumb and two fingers. Nor could I make a loose fist without excruciating pain. After just a few short weeks I could make a tight fist with little pain and regained use of my fingers and thumb. Four years later and my flares occur farther apart and are shorter in duration. I have also discovered some fabulous natural lotions that contain CBD that I use for my rashes.

While medical marijuana works for me, I also understand and respect that it is not for everyone. The only reason I share how I medicate is to share my experience. I am not offering medical advice nor am I insinuating that my way is the only way. Everyone’s journey with PsA is different. Thankfully I found a path that gives me hope for the future. How you choose to treat your conditions is up to you. My hope is that no matter which path you take, it is one with less pain.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.