Since my ‘off-the-cuff’ diagnosis of ehlers-danlos syndrome (aka EDS) from a specialist I saw last year, I’ve admittedly not given the condition much attention. But as I head to my osteopath with one of my ribs out of place, I’m thinking I should probably educate myself a bit more about this condition I’ve had since birth.
Unknowingly, EDS has played a part in many of my ailments over the years. I guess the starting point was my scoliosis. I can’t remember if I was born with it, or it developed over a few years, but as a child I had a curve in my spine. It wasn’t anywhere near the degree of severity you would typically come across on a Google search, but it was enough to get noticed. As a result I spend a lot of time at the physio getting it fixed up. I remember lying on a physio table with straps tied to me getting stretched medieval style back into alignment. It obviously did the trick because the scoliosis appears to have gone.
Another common EDS symptom is having a small jaw. So, growing up I also suffered the torture of wearing a plate in my mouth for a number of years (all because my dentist wouldn’t pull out a couple of teeth from my clearly overcrowded mouth). Needless to say the plate did nothing to expand my jaw and as a result I had to have all my wisdom teeth pulled out a few years ago because they had nowhere to go.
Other issues over the years have included spraining my ankle numerous times, chronic back/neck pain, bruises and scratches that appear out of nowhere, clicking joints, “growing pains” (I’m 29 and 5ft3, so it’s clearly NOT growing pains) and slipped ribs. And no, I didn’t hurt my rib whilst doing something active…I did it while I was asleep in bed. In fact, I’ve often injured myself whilst doing light tasks. I once hurt my calf muscle whilst rinsing out a cup at the sink.
Though in all this negativity, there is one ray of light in this diagnosis…I look young for my age. Something about the condition gives our skin a youthful look. Can’t complain about that!