In one of my earlier blogs I spoke on having a toolbox to deal with your pain. Mainly so that opiates won’t be your “go to” option. The American Chronic Pain Association website was an awesome resource, but I know the feeling of realizing no one can know your pain. And the intense desire for relief or the intense relief provided by opiates.
I am all for opiates, but for several reasons they are not how I seek to relieve pain now that it isn’t a searing, stabbing, and unrelenting pain. Opiates damage your body, for males it lowers testosterone. (citation) They slow your thinking and induce behavior outside your norm. And, perhaps most importantly, Opiates mask your pain such that you lose the ability to judge accurately what level of activity is appropriate under the circumstances. Let pain pills be the last line of defense in your toolbox.
Document your pain. If immobilized, hour to hour, if not, then moments of significant pain should be memorialized in a journal giving the details such as time, duration, treatment used. More importantly, keep a journal of your medicine dosing. When taking opiates it is easy to “forget” that you have already taken your medicine. Sometimes the pain is so bad you could care less if your taking more than the required dose. What you lose sight of is that your memory is not reliable and unless you want to be someone’s puppet on strings fashioned from opiates, then you need to know how much you are taking, how often you are taking them and why you are taking them. Keeping a pain journal also helps you cope psychologically from my experience.
Find the silver lining every morning. Try to name five good things in your journal to start your day. You will find that this positivity builds up over time. And why not do it? If you suffer from chronic pain, then life is stealing all your joy and good feelings. Fight to get them back!
I know I haven’t hawked our wares today. That isn’t what is important. You are what is important and if you suffer from pain, then you need to investigate the links in this entry. If you suffer from pain, you don’t have to let it steal your life.