A huge subject I know, and so many different varieties of pain, from the niggling back pain to severe pain caused by illness that will not get better.
There are many people in the over sixty age bracket coping with this every day. From arthritis to cancer, joint injury, broken bones, and backs that have started to show their age by compacting, and squashing discs.
So I decided to see who had some answers, there are many sites that might give me glib answers, instead I talked to some friends.
I looked at six people who deal every day with complex problems, and what did I find? I still discovered that those six people are living their lives, working in the community and not letting pain rule their lives. Okay, there are days, and nights more likely, when it impacts and has a profound effect on what they can do and what they have to forget about even trying to do.
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It can isolate the person causing depression, robbing them of a social life, but if that happens help is available one of the people I talked to sees a psychiatrist on a regular basis, as this helps him cope with the constant battle. In some places there are pain clinics set up to help deal with this issue. We have yet to establish one where we live.
Another friend runs a successful business, keeps a perfect home and is also supporting the health care needs of an elderly parent. What does she do? Her strategy is to just to work in the good spells, and wow! does she work, she puts all she has into those good hours when the pain leaves her for a while. But she admits she is often awake in the early hours, so she makes the most of that time too. She reads books she never had time for. A new drug has brought relief from rheumatoid arthritis and it has been stopped in its tracks for now, but as with all newer drugs, the side effects need monitoring so blood tests are necessary and become a part of life. I am on the same drug and it has changed my life from what was becoming a sad and pain-filled existence, to full, fruitful and busy again. Just seems to be making my hair thin rapidly!
Some have tried exercise machines and relaxation. The machines didn’t work; the relaxation, heat pads and quiet time outdoors did work. Being close to nature can be healing, the noise confusion and pollution we have is detrimental to any health issue. So walk on that beach, or drive to that park. Get where you can see the sky, listen to birds, or just sit and be amongst trees. Although I know there are times when just leaving the bed is a battle.
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So of the strategies below, which are documented in a pain management edition, which have you tried? And what works for you?
- Heat packs
- Warm baths/hydro pool
I am sure you can add more, what works for you? How do you manage pain? Tell us in the comments below.