25 Unexpected Side Effects of “Fibro Fog”

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Fibro fog? It is a feeling that you are in a daze, can not remember the simplest things. You have memory loss and may not be able to speak the words you want to say. You have trouble concentrating, may forget small details and even plans you had made. You may have a feeling of confusion, like you just can not grasp what is being said to you. You have decreased concentration and even a lack of alertness and energy. It can be frustrating and even depressing. It is one of the main difficulties we face on a daily basis. It can range from mild issues, like forgetting the word “hairbrush” to severe, like the feeling of confusion as to why you are in the room in the first place.

Fibro Fog. Actual cognitive issues related to fibromyalgia. What is fibro fog?

It is a feeling that you are in a daze, can not remember the simplest things. You have memory loss and may not be able to speak the words you want to say. You have trouble concentrating, may forget small details and even plans you had made. You may have a feeling of confusion, like you just can not grasp what is being said to you. You have decreased concentration and even a lack of alertness and energy.

It can be frustrating and even depressing. It is one of the main difficulties we face on a daily basis. It can range from mild issues, like forgetting the word “hairbrush” to severe, like the feeling of confusion as to why you are in the room in the first place. I will be in a conversation, have the word on the tip of my tongue, a simple word such as hairbrush, and can not for the life of me say that word! Instead it comes out as “hair thingy”….or an explanation like ” the thing I put in my hair” I have walked in my room to get dressed for the day, and ended up looking through a book of photos and then proceed to leave the room. This would, and sometimes still does upset me to the point of tears. I feel like I am going nuts, time to admit myself into the closest psychiatric ward.

To spread awareness related to fibromyalgia and fibro Fog, we have asked a question on our Facebook  page “Living with Fibromyalgia”  that What’s an unexpected side effect of “fibro fog” you’ve experienced? Explain how this has affected you. We received hundreds of comments, and here we have shared few of them with you. well most of members said that Losing names for simple objects or replacing the name with something random. Listening to what people are saying but either not hearing it or not understanding so you have to ask them to repeat it. Losing the inability to multitask are the major issues they face due to fibro fog. To read 33 Ways to describe fibro fog to someone who don’t experience it  click here.

Here is what community Shares with us related to Fibro Fog:

1. I’ve left my garden hose run 3 times because I have forgotten to turn it off after watering outside animals so it ran for 24+ hours. Forgetting to start washer after do all the settings, come back to put in dryer later ..they haven’t been washed. Think I’ve returned a call or sent an email, it’s not been done. Forgetting what I’m saying….it’s so infuriating!!! – Peggy

2. Replacing one word for another, for example, I ask my husband to get me something that is high up in the cupboard but if I glanced at another object before asking him to do that I say the name of that other object while pointing at what I want. I often ask him for the “chair” that’s high up in my kitchen cupboard. Very frustrating for me. – Angela

3. The inability to have a normal conversation plays heavily on my depression. Sometimes I feel like the only conversations I have, that make any sense, are those I have with my 3 year old granddaughter. – Lynda

4. I get anxious talking around people that don’t know me because my speech has gotten pretty choppy. I have to pause a lot and think of words or I say off the wall words that make zero sense to what I’m saying. I forget appointments, conversations, and ask questions over and over. But the part that bothers me the most is I feel like my intelligence level has dropped tremendously. I cant focus, like figuring out simple problems or puzzles take so much more work and sometimes my brain just can’t. I get in the car and forget where I’m going, I have occasionally been driving down the highway and panicked for a moment not knowing where I was. My husband had to take over the checkbook and bills. I messed up paying bills and balancing the checkbook so badly too many times when I had done this perfectly for years and years before this. – Jessica

5. I’ll also say this one more time. We all forget things. Everyone. Big difference between forgetting and fibro fog. I can easily forget to bring my grocery list to store. Just forgot, like everyone else. Fibro fog forgetting has a feeling attached to it. A mucky, hazy feeling. A hangover feeling. And I start slurring my speech. I go into panic because of the scary feeling and the forgetful thing I did. My brain is trying so hard to get to the side where the answer is and you can literally feel pressure in your brain and it hurts. Last night I left the burner on the stove after cooking and decided Tupperware was a good butter lid. – Tracy

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6. Right in the middle of grooming a horse and my whole mind goes blank, I start to sweat, legs buckling and I try sitting. Nope I have to lay down for about 15 minutes staring straight ahead, not moving, no pain, like floating. After the 15 everything returns to normal. As normal as us fibro people get. – Margaret

7. The worst seems to be what we all have in common: the inability to find words, blanking in mid sentence, and feeling stupid. I agree. Oddly enough, I do much better writing rather than speaking, and I’ve kept journals for decades. I’m so glad I have because a lot of my long term memory has been affected. I’ve kept a pain journal during flares, a dream journal, etcetera. I have to force writing a bit nowadays, but it helps to have a place to bare ones soul and not have to do it out loud – Terry

8. Trying to write things down, and forgetting instantly what I am writing. I work as a kitchen assistant and I have to write the date and what food it is on labels and sometimes I really struggle when the food is right in front of me and I’ve already written the date several times but I forget each time. So frustrating. I feel so stupid. – Lucy

9. Going to pick up my daughter at the airport and realizing that I was going the wrong way! Times when I cannot figure out how to get somewhere, that I have been to thousands of times! can’t remember words, when talking, can’t spell…. – Lorraine

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10. The most frustrating thing for me is being unable to follow verbal instructions. Its like i hear it but my brain doesnt process it. Spelling words wrong and misreading things is also frustrating, especially as i love to read and write and ive always been pretty good at it. Forgetting what i am doing is another, but many people without fibro do that, so its not as embarrassing as asking someone to repeat something.- Mikaela

11. My chronic-fatigue brain fog first hit me in the second year of a demanding doctoral program, in which having an excellent memory and being articulate (among other skills) were assumed. My professors and even some of my fellow students began to question whether I belonged in the program, and I felt like an impostor being there. At that point, no one talked about chronic fatigue or brain fog, so I felt like I was just losing my mind. So much shame. – Ayson

12. Losing train of thought mud sentence, even mid word. Putting milk in cupboard, cereal in fridge, left oven in for 3 hrs after done cooking, having to use a calendar to keep track of new med. Increment schedule, had to buy daily pill box because I kept forgetting if I took meds or not. Setting an alarm 2 times a day to remember to take meds. – Shannon

13. This summer on vacation up at the lake, I couldn’t remember how to deal out a game of solitaire — something I have done a zillion times, every summer of my life. I had to Google it. Then I sat at the table crying because I am new to this symptom and it scares me. – Emily

14. I work in hospitality and standing at the cash register literally looking at how much change to give to a customer and not being able to make it register because the fibro fog makes me confused, and just forgetting what I’m saying mid sentence. – Georgie

15. Oh, When I need to talk to a repairman, or customer service etc, I only use the chat. That way I can have time to think about what I want to say, so I don’t sound like an idiot on the phone. – Aimee

16. Mixing telephone numbers up . I often have to ask people to dial for me or to put their own number in my phone, l mix the sequence of the numbers up x embarrassing to say the least x – Sanah

17. I can’t introduce people because I forget their names. Like my parents names. I have forgotten my own name. I have had these especially after flashbacks. It’s horrible. My brain just goes blank and I forget how to talk, to say the simplest of phrases or works to help myself. I’ve told my family and good friends about these times and what’s happening to me so they can understand. They have been terrific, except for my mom. She is just not receptive to it. The date is always unknown to me. I have many props. My calendar, notes on my phone, lists of things to do, where things are. – Cynthia

18. Cooking! I am on a very limited budget. When I burn food, it makes me want to cry, because every bit is precious. I keep forgetting that I have food on the stove. I do have a kitchen time, but I keep forgetting to set it. I’ve ruined several of my favorite pots this way. – Yocheved

19. I noticed the fibro fog when I could no longer follow conversations at work. I wrote legal documents and provided support to co-workers, and it really scared me when I started not to understand what people were saying to me. I didn’t understand what was happening. I retired from the job I had had for 35 years and it was a good decision, because my fibro symptoms have continued to worsen and now I can do what I need to do to try and cope. I have realized my friends and family have come to expect my forgetting words, or names or places. I can now laugh about it—sort of—but it is still extremely frustrating. – Sally

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20. I think at one time or another I have had every one of these. I no longer drive either because of my delayed action time. I have always felt so bad when standing in front of my kids completely unable to remember their names. Luckily, they are older now and understand that it isn’t Mummy trying to be funny. I thought at first that I was literally losing my mind, went to the Doc to have him check me out for Alzheimers and Dementia (at age 45). Up until then, it hadn’t been so bad then it just continued to get worse. I forget what I’m doing as I’m doing it. Trying to type this has been an exercise in frustration, I lose my train of thought and have to keep going back to figure out what I was talking about, or I type in a word that doesn’t even come close to the word I want to say. Some days I just want to scream at the way my brain will just go off somewhere when I’m with someone. Yes, it helps to know that I am not alone; when I remember. – Barbara

21. I get my words switched around when I speak. For example, if I tell my daughter she needs to take out the trash, it comes out as “you need to trash the take out”. Also, driving disorientation. When driving in a familiar area, I suddenly feel lost like I don’t know where I am or where I am going. Forgetting what I am saying mid sentence. Wondering if I said something out loud that I was thinking. – Tiffany

22. I have a hard time following the simplest directions, such as those on the side of a box of rice, pasta, etc. I often have to ask my husband for help. Never thought that would happen but it has. – Sandy

23. Walking through the grocery store with a list and then not know where I’m going and just walking around – Bobby

24. My son once asked why my purse was in the fridge. I looked and, sure enough, there it was. So I looked where I normally kept my purse and there was the milk. Couldn’t remember what to call a kitchen appliance, kept calling it the “dirty dishes garage”. My son asked if I meant the dishwasher. Yes, that is what I meant. Twice, when driving, I suddenly couldn’t figure out where I was. Nothing looked familiar – not street signs or businesses. Until finally something made my brain click into place and I could figure it out. I’ve lived in the same city for over 20 years! Really scared me! I’ll be in my house and just stand there because I want to watch TV and I want a glass of water but can’t figure out what to do first. I finally just have to wrench myself into doing something. Talk out loud to myself all the time to keep focused. Sometimes when I talk I “twangle” the words due to “verbal dyslexia”. Example: knives and forks become fives and knorks. Fog might become foog. I use the word “thingie” to describe things a lot because I can’t remember the word for them. I’ve bluntly just started telling people I can’t think of the word. They’ll be helpful and say words until we come up with the right one.

25. I can’t remember sometimes if I’ve eaten and only realize I haven’t when I start feeling wonky. Also somethings after doing something that takes concentration, like driving to the store, when I’m driving home I forget where I’m at. At times like that I have to trust my auto pilot, but it’s scary! – Lauria

Also Read:

Well let me tell you what i face the issue while compiling this article. I forget the numbering that how many comment i have listed already, i forget the spelling of the person who share their views. While reading comment, i forget that it is already covered or not, so you may also see some repetitions in the article related to some issues. Summing up in the picture below. If you want to add to the list or share your experience, let us know in the comment section. We will also like to give credit to “The Mighty” for the question, as we found this question on their site. 

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