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WHAT IS A FLARE?

A flare in Lupus is as individual and different in each person
as Lupus is individual and different in each person.


What is a flare? The question has to be a very subjective answer. I don't believe there can be an adequate definition of a SLE flare because it has to be subjective. Even test can not always show the extent of some disease activity, your doctor must use medical records, patient interview/examination as well as medical tests as diagnostic tools.

Because of the myriad differences I describe a flare as being when you feel much worse than usual and the disease is active with warning signs.

Warning Signs of a Flare: can exemplify as a disproportionate increase of fatigue to activity, pain, rashes, fever, abdominal discomfort, headache and dizziness, dry mouth and eyes(which are not Sjorgren's Syndrome), sores, inflammation, hair loss, loss of energy, loss of the ability to think clearly, forgetfulness or a warning sign may be something not even mentioned.

Warning signs of a flare can come about simply by eating an unbalanced diet, not drinking enough water, taking a medication incorrectly or UV(ultra violet) sun and florescent exposure. Flares are as individual as an individual.

Generalized, flares are often caused by unprotected exposure to sun light and fluorescent lighting . UV light or light rays often cause increase reactions which may exemplify as a butterfly and skin rashes, mouth and nose sores or the body and tissue inflammation associated with lupus.

If is important to use a sunscreen or sun block and avoid peak sunlight hours (usually 10 am to 4 pm) outdoor activities. The use of sunscreens and sun blocks is very important to help control a UV flare reactions. A Lupus patient should use ultraviolet sun protection factor of 15 or more, you even need to stock up on sunscreen for the winter months.

Do not forget to check makeup and lotions for a sunscreen.(all year round)

If the protection you chose causes ANY type of irritation try a different kind immediately. It would be rather futile to try to prevent rashes by using something that causes a rash, don't you think?

At times sun exposure between 10 am to 4 pm is unavoidable.

This is when protective clothing and coverings attain the utmost importance.

Lupus should not affect where you live. You can live in a very sunny climate or a partly cloudy one; as long as you protect yourself. Cover up but don't court heat stroke!

Learn to recognize your warning signals
Try to eat a balanced diet and exercise
Take all your medication as prescribed
Maintain good communication with your doctor