Hi Cath and Sonia, yes sounds like MS hug.
I’ve had it on-and-off for a few years and it really is awful… also it comes in various forms which makes it all even more difficult to work out if hug or now. Sometimes painful, sometimes just tight feeling like wearing a corset and sometimes like you say Sonia, as if not enough room there. Also note, it can be on one side only as well.
I’ve got a ‘copy and paste’ list of tips here… some of it might help (hope so). My main tip though is to see it as a sign that you are overdoing it… either physically but also taking on too much stress and worry… although lowering stress I know is much easier said than done!
Anyway here’s the list.
It’s a spasm of the small muscles between the ribs. Here are some tips that might help:
· It can go all around your rib area, or only in part of rib area… up high on ribs or low down on ribs… or it can be only on one side of ribs
· Sometimes the affected area will be extremely itchy
· Much worse in heat
· Much worse when fatigued or stressed
· Don’t wear a bra (it irritates the muscles)
· Don’t wear tight clothing… the looser the better
· Avoid large meals… little and often is better
· Lie down in/on bed if you can… lying completely flat often helps… although some people find lying down makes it worse… so try different positions to see if one works better for you
· Take 2 Paracetamol… if you are not on other pain med’s… or try one Paracetamol & one Ibuprofin (no more than 3 times a day)
· Try controlling your breathing… deep in through the nose and slowly blow out of mouth… and try and relax whole body while doing it
· Stay as cool as you can but don’t have cold shower… luke warm is better
· Rest, rest, rest and then get some more rest (if at all possible)
· Gently rub the affected area. It might feel like it’s bruised… don’t worry, that’s normal
· Recently I’ve discovered that if I eat something small, eg bowl of cereal, it seems to relieve the hug for a while. Not sure why but it’s worth a try.
· I have read that some people find relief by tying something tight around the affected area (a scarf maybe). So it might be worth trying to see if it works for you.