View Full Version : figuring out what causes flares need help

02-13-2008, 11:29 PM
Hi All,

I'm new to Lupus and am sorting through symptoms and what can cause a flare. I've been doing research but I'd like to know what you all have found to cause flares. Please respond if you can, I'd appreciate any and all input.

Thanks so much!


02-14-2008, 10:07 AM
One of the major things that can cause a flare is exposure to the sun and/or UV rays. It is very important for us to avoid the sun as much as possible by wearing sunscreen all of the time, keeping our bodies covered in clothing, wear hats and sunglasses that have uv protection.

Stress is another major cause of a flare! We must work very hard at reducing the stressors in our lives and learn techniques to help us cope with stressful situations.

A poor diet can make us vulnerable to flares (as well as some foods - like Refined, highly processed foods and oils, Excessive carbohydrates (sugar, grains & even fruit), Alfalfa sprouts as their amino acid canavanine exacerbates lupus inflammations, Nightshade veggies (tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant & peppers) may aggravate lupus inflammation).

Overexertion can cause a flare (we must walk a tightrope between exercise and recuperative rest).

Other causes of flares are personal, depending upon the symptoms that you are suffering from with Lupus. Perhaps some other members will give you some more information about what causes their flare-ups.

I hope that I've been helpful :lol:

Peace and Blessings

02-14-2008, 01:14 PM
Amazing isn't it? Saysuzie is so right, we walk a tightrope.

I find I avoid flares best by staying OUT of the sun. Sunscreen, long sleeves, slacks, and of course my trademark HATS - 4" brim or wider.

Exercise - again a tightrope. But I feel better if I do some every day - walking, biking, eliptical at the gym, light weights.

Eating well - I follow a semi vegitarian diet (I eat fish now and then, expecially wild salmon), high in omega 3 oils (flax, olive) and high in whole foods - whole grains, fresh veggies, beans and lentils. THat has helped me.

I think many of us vary in our specific triggers, but stress, sun and exhaustion are common factors for most of us.

Hugs dear,

02-14-2008, 04:30 PM

Sounds like you've got it down! :) This is exactly the kind of advice I need, thank you so much for posting.

It's funny to think of the subconscious things we do, I love hats, always have and I've always dreaded summer. I try to stay out of the sun but now I know why and I'm going to become the "umbrella lady". :)

I'm glad you've found diet and exercise to be helpful, I'm hoping to get on track with these soon. We are remodeling our bathroom and I can't stay at my house (chemicals) so I'm staying with a friend, once I'm home I hope to be able to do more in the way of diet and exercise.

Thanks again for your input! Hugs to you!


02-15-2008, 02:47 PM
Hi onpointe,

For me, and I think for most of us the sun is the number one cause. And stress being a close second. An odd one for me is gel-type deodorant. The solid stuff causes me no problem, but the gels will cause a terrible rash on my arms and face .

02-17-2008, 09:56 AM
I always found I handled stressful situations well. As soon as the crisis was over, I'd fall apart. Now I know why lol.

I try not to hold things in. Course that gets ya into trouble too lol which causes me stress. Feel like a dog chasing my tail.

I'm not one for sun worshiping...never was. Makes me squint and gives me head ackes. So big hats and sunglasses suits me fine. I would always break out in sunblisters as a teenager. Sucked when my friends would want to go hang out at the beach for the day. Now I either find a shadey spot or make my own shade I do love being outdoors.

There's alot of things that are starting to make sense now that I'm putting 2 and 2 together.

02-17-2008, 11:32 AM
I find certain alcohols do it too, im a promo girl for diagio so often i end up flairing from trying certain products (captain tattoo is terrible for that) i know horrible job i have to research the products ;).

02-24-2008, 01:59 AM
Thanks for all the great tips everyone! I also tend to hold things in and then I end up falling apart too, I'm afraid to just let my feelings be known when I'm stressed, I'm kinda known for being sassy, I don't try to be, really, I want to be a humble girl but my sassy side gets me every time, that's with me holding things in! ;) I'll give it a try though, it's just going to take lots of deep breathing in the process.

Sounds like the sun is out, fine by me, never much cared for it anyway, ironically I worked at SeaWorld, if I had stayed, that job probably would have killed me! I was always trying to hide in the shade, the little I could find anyway. :)

I don't much care for alcohol, I no longer have ovaries and it gives me hot flashes. So I guess that's out too, no big loss.

I'm finding diet changes to be the hardest, I have a really bad sweet tooth and I love dairy products and my NP wants me to cut both out, I'll work on that one.

Thanks again for the tips, you can read and read medical "stuff" but I'm finding that talking to people and their experience is more helpful so thanks for taking the time to help!


02-24-2008, 02:28 AM

You need to speak with your doctor again about cutting out the dairy and here's why....some of the medications they give us .... like lets say oooOOoOo steroids!....suck the calcium out of our poor wee bones.

So if you are cutting out dairy you will need to bulk up on other foods that contain calcium...brocoli for example.

And ask about taking calcium suppliments...but be careful, I read an article recently that ... oh waite brain fog is rolling in .... was it calcium or vitamin C that was blocking the...that's it, it was vitamin C suppliments that blocks our systems ability to absorbe calcium to the point that our bones get very thin and fragile!

So speak to your doctor. I have an upcoming appointment with a nuetricianist cause my head got mussed up trying to keep all the eat this dont eat that's straight.

02-24-2008, 04:17 AM
Thanks for the info. :)

I will talk to her about that, very interesting. I can't take steriods though, I'm only on plaquenil and pain meds but I'll double check cuz calcium is important especially since I have two strikes against me, SLE and no ovaries.

I hear ya about the do's and don'ts, seems like there is an unfair amount of don'ts if you ask me! ;)

Thanks again,

02-24-2008, 07:08 AM
Oh yes, it can all be so confusing and convoluted. Prednisone does leach calcium from the system and cause brittle bones. It also slows healing. Have you noticed how long it takes that little cut to heal, or that bruise to go away? Vitamin C and zinc boost the immune system and aid in healing. For most people enhancing the immune system is a good thing, for us, not so much since it just turns around and attacks ourselves. We often need extra calcium due to the meds we take. But calcium requires vitamin D to be adsorbed in to the body. The body makes its own vitamin D which is converted into its active form in the skin when exposed to SUN. Because we have to avoid exposure to the sun, we may not have adequate vitamin D to absorb the calcium we need. Calcium suppliments With vitamin D in them are a good way to solve this problem.