“Wait… What was I doing here?” Between 20% and 60% of lupus warriors battle lupus brain fog.
If you are battling lupus and find yourself feeling confused, fatigued, or forgetful you are not alone. Perhaps up to half of all Lupus Warriors experience a unique feeling of mental fogginess. These symptoms are collectively known as “cognitive dysfunction.” They can be very frustrating and may cause challenges in work and relationships.
It is import to identify if you or a loved one are experiencing lupus brain fog so you can know what to expect and create a plan to cope with the issue.
What can I do to tackle lupus brain fog?
Engage Your Care Team
If there is one thing that we know about lupus, it is that it affects people differently. While there are medications that target brain fog, it could take time for you and your doctor to find the strategy or dose that works for you. Sometimes these medications will target treating the underlying lupus and other times it will target an associated problem such as depression or anxiety.
Make sure to partner with your doctor to get it right. That means being honest with your care team, tracking your symptoms, and taking your medications. Having a good rapport with your physicians and making sure they know your objectives and concerns is vital to battling lupus.
Workout Your Mind
Challenging your mind can help keep your mental health at its peak. Fortunately, it has never been easier or more fun to “train your brain.” There are hundreds of apps and online games that you can play to give yourself a cognitive challenge, from simple puzzles to more complicated mental agility tests. Rather not spend more time in front of a screen? Try to get into the habit of doing a Sudoku or your paper’s crossword.
Use Reminders and Apps
If you are experiencing lupus brain fog, you can use your smartphone as a powerful coping tool. You can use it to set alarm reminders, create lists, text someone your plans so they can help you remember, and take lots of notes. Of course, you can always go the less digital route and make lots of sticky notes.
Build the Right Emotional Environment
Regardless of what you do to tackle lupus brain fog, you should make sure you have a supportive environment both at home and work. While it can be easy to get frustrated when friends or family don’t understand, you can try forgiving them. You can also try forgiving yourself by reminding yourself, it’s not your fault.