New to Dupixent? What to Expect!
Before you continue reading, just be aware that what you might be expecting is not what you expect! ;) Carry on!
I'm currently a part of a Dupixent Facebook group that sincerely has me cringing every time I log in (trust me, I've been considering leaving the group, but occasionally it's nice to jump in and give people hope by sharing my story).
Many comments on there are of people asking what they should 'expect' when starting Dupixent. There are a few noteworthy things that I find ineffective with this question.
Everyone’s body is different
How I react to Dupixent (or any medication) will be different than how you react to Dupixent. Maybe there will be similarities, but overall it will always be different because you and I are two completely different biological human beings.
So asking others what you should expect will only provide you with how the drug has impacted them, not how it will impact you.
Expectations create assumptions
By gaining other people's experiences (normally negative on these platforms), you then may create assumptions about Dupixent and how it will affect you. According to Oxford Languages, an assumption is "a thing that is accepted as true or as certain to happen, without proof."
These learned experiences may create false assumptions and a narrative of fear, doubt, and insecurity about the medication. So much so that it may even hinder you from trying the drug! (Adding the exclamation point for dramatic purposes).
These expectations can also lead to anticipations – without realizing it, you may be anticipating these side effects to happen to you as a result of other people's experiences.
Assumptions can lead to disappointment
Assumptions can (and often will) lead to exactly what you fear - disappointment. My experience is that many people who seek this information then become fearful of continuing forth with Dupixent because of what other people have experienced.
Now, I am a believer in the law of attraction, meaning that what you put out mentally and physically is what you shall receive, mentally and physically. Your mentality in trying a new drug, like Dupixent, is just as important as taking the drug itself.
What if I told you that your mentality could affect how your body responds to the drug? YES, it can. It's neuroscience and psychoneuroimmunology, or PNI, which I will not bore you with here. But that's how powerful our minds are! They – our thoughts – can literally affect our immune system and our body's response to external forces.
So what now?
Here are a few tips that have supported me and can support you in creating the best experience you can have with Dupixent (or any drug).
Stop expecting anything
Expectations lead to assumptions, which leads to disappointment. So instead of expecting, I recommend sticking to curiosity and discovery. I become curious about all that happens at the moment when it happens. Not before or after. When I try anything and something – a side effect or reaction – comes up, I normally say, "Interesting," and process the pros and cons of continuing forth. I don't make up a story about it. I don't create fear. I just remain curious.
Be aware without drawing conclusions
I am all for researching and learning about other people's experiences, especially when it comes to trying a new drug. What does not work for me is when I use their experiences to make concluding thoughts and decisions about the drug and how it will impact me. All I am saying is to try things for yourself, especially if you feel like the pros outweigh the cons.
Don't be afraid to ask your doctor
Facebook groups and forums are great, but they are also often unmonitored and can provide more misinformation than true information itself. So ask the professionals. Don't be afraid to ask your doctor about what others have stated to gain reassurance.
All in all, my invitation to you is to stop expecting. Start asking questions, remain curious, and discover the answers for yourself.
How often do you downplay your eczema to other people?