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Quality of life and climate


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Hi, I am wondering if anyone with low tolerance of heat has found that living in a cooler location creates a better quality of life with Dysautonomia. I have lived in West Palm Beach Florida now for around 11 years. I am 65, and have had Dysautonomia all of my life,but has gotten worse as I get older.  The heat makes me a prisoner of my home. Even the winter is mostly too hot. I suffer so much outside, and miss going for long walks. Sometimes I think maybe I would also be intolerant of cold, but the cold would not dehydrate me and make me nauseous.  I am here because my son lives here, and I love being near him, but I question my quality of life. I can’t enjoy what Florida has to offer. I just wish that at least I could enjoy walking. 

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Dear @Ckitz - I too suffer in the summer and have to stay inside, I can't even tolerate sitting on the shady porch. But I live in a 4 season climate state and certainly can tell you that fall and spring are definitely easier on my POTS symptoms. Even very cold winters are more tolerable than a hot summer. Have you tried to use cooling vests etc for walking outside in the heat? My sister also has POTS and she uses cool cuffs around neck, ankles and wrists, she claims it makes activity in heat more tolerable. 

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Hello Ckitz (great name!),

In reply to your inquiry: I have found the answer to be yes. I used to live in St. Louis, Missouri but moved to Connecticut for work in January 2019. I have a much better time in the spring and summer here than I did in St. Louis. The difference is quite striking - last spring I thought I was *cured* and quit taking my medication. By August I realized I was not cured and felt disappointed, but this spring I am again noticing how much better I feel. 

I live and work in the coastal climate zone. I literally am less than two miles from the ocean at both home and work. I've read that being close to the ocean has a moderating and stabilizing impact on barometric pressure and temperature and I suspect this plays a role in the benefits I'm experiencing. 

This experience has brought my attention to the significance of the winter as well: I feel about as bad during winters here in CT as I did in St. Louis. I notice less physical symptoms but significant cognitive impairment as the temperature drops below 32 degrees. I don't have a good explanation of why this is - I tried using humidifiers to keep the air from drying out, but this doesn't seem to fix it. I also have moderate sleep apnea and I know that sleep apnea is often worse in the winter, so that may explain it.

It may also be worth noting that I have a mild case of POTS. I am 36 years old and have had symptoms since I was 18, but it does not stop me from exercising or walking around. I have never fainted. I am a college professor and I had some trouble as a graduate student standing up and lecturing, but that was before I began using medication and lifestyle interventions.

I hope this helps! 

Very respectfully,

Green

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@Ckitz - recently we had severe thunderstorms in my area due to rapidly changing weather ( it cycled fast between 70's and 30's, therefore the sudden and rapid changes in barometric pressure messed with my POTS ). We do not normally experience thunderstorms unless in the summer and I definitely think a state with frequent thunderstorms ( like Florida ) would mess me up.  

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I cannot tolerate high humidity especially with anything much greater than 80 degrees.  I tend to feel better in the winter with the exception of aches and pains (joints and muscles) with storm systems. 

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On 4/9/2020 at 6:46 PM, Pistol said:

Dear @Ckitz - I too suffer in the summer and have to stay inside, I can't even tolerate sitting on the shady porch. But I live in a 4 season climate state and certainly can tell you that fall and spring are definitely easier on my POTS symptoms. Even very cold winters are more tolerable than a hot summer. Have you tried to use cooling vests etc for walking outside in the heat? My sister also has POTS and she uses cool cuffs around neck, ankles and wrists, she claims it makes activity in heat more tolerable. 

PISTOL, I actually have a cooling vest that I wear in the summer here. Looks like a safari vest. You wouldn’t believe all the comments I get. ...are you a safari guide, are you wearing a bomb vest, do you have a back problem, are you a reporter, etc...so funny. Anyway, it keeps my stomach cold, but I still get very hot especially in my face and still sweat. I also still get sick from the heat, so I feel it just doesn’t work.

 

On 4/11/2020 at 8:21 PM, green said:

Hello Ckitz (great name!),

In reply to your inquiry: I have found the answer to be yes. I used to live in St. Louis, Missouri but moved to Connecticut for work in January 2019. I have a much better time in the spring and summer here than I did in St. Louis. The difference is quite striking - last spring I thought I was *cured* and quit taking my medication. By August I realized I was not cured and felt disappointed, but this spring I am again noticing how much better I feel. 

I live and work in the coastal climate zone. I literally am less than two miles from the ocean at both home and work. I've read that being close to the ocean has a moderating and stabilizing impact on barometric pressure and temperature and I suspect this plays a role in the benefits I'm experiencing. 

This experience has brought my attention to the significance of the winter as well: I feel about as bad during winters here in CT as I did in St. Louis. I notice less physical symptoms but significant cognitive impairment as the temperature drops below 32 degrees. I don't have a good explanation of why this is - I tried using humidifiers to keep the air from drying out, but this doesn't seem to fix it. I also have moderate sleep apnea and I know that sleep apnea is often worse in the winter, so that may explain it.

It may also be worth noting that I have a mild case of POTS. I am 36 years old and have had symptoms since I was 18, but it does not stop me from exercising or walking around. I have never fainted. I am a college professor and I had some trouble as a graduate student standing up and lecturing, but that was before I began using medication and lifestyle interventions.

I hope this helps! 

Very respectfully,

Green

 

On 4/11/2020 at 8:21 PM, green said:

Hello Ckitz (great name!),

In reply to your inquiry: I have found the answer to be yes. I used to live in St. Louis, Missouri but moved to Connecticut for work in January 2019. I have a much better time in the spring and summer here than I did in St. Louis. The difference is quite striking - last spring I thought I was *cured* and quit taking my medication. By August I realized I was not cured and felt disappointed, but this spring I am again noticing how much better I feel. 

I live and work in the coastal climate zone. I literally am less than two miles from the ocean at both home and work. I've read that being close to the ocean has a moderating and stabilizing impact on barometric pressure and temperature and I suspect this plays a role in the benefits I'm experiencing. 

This experience has brought my attention to the significance of the winter as well: I feel about as bad during winters here in CT as I did in St. Louis. I notice less physical symptoms but significant cognitive impairment as the temperature drops below 32 degrees. I don't have a good explanation of why this is - I tried using humidifiers to keep the air from drying out, but this doesn't seem to fix it. I also have moderate sleep apnea and I know that sleep apnea is often worse in the winter, so that may explain it.

It may also be worth noting that I have a mild case of POTS. I am 36 years old and have had symptoms since I was 18, but it does not stop me from exercising or walking around. I have never fainted. I am a college professor and I had some trouble as a graduate student standing up and lecturing, but that was before I began using medication and lifestyle interventions.

I hope this helps! 

Very respectfully,

Green

Thanks GREEN...for sharing your thoughts. I do think a place like CT would be better for me. I think any kind of weather change can cause problems, but at least I could go for walks, and exercise is so important. I am glad to hear you are functional and can still work. My heart goes out to young people dealing with an “invisible” illness. 

 

On 4/17/2020 at 4:27 AM, sitcedar said:

I think, Yes it is a factor since it would either lessen or give a hike on the anxiety side that may affect your Dysautonomia.  If you feel calmer then it would be advantage of living on a cooler place.

So very true, and really such an important point. Anxiety is a bear, and the last thing I need is more of it.

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