What to do when life is controlled by pain
Depending on your individual problem or injury there may be clear paths which you are advised to follow by your doctor. However, in this article I am talking about when your body feels out of control, reacting in spectacular fashion to any small stresses and strains and you find ‘doing’ anything makes matters worse. Confusion reigns (and not just yours!).
So each day is pain…..you’ve tried so many different things but the pain(s) is still there. One specialist says surgery, one says medications, others say change your life, still others say live with it!
You are confused, why do people not ‘know’ what is the best thing to do? Why is there ambiguity and not a clear path of treatment? Surely with all the medical training around there should be an answer?
You no longer trust your body. It can turn against you at any moment – shutting down with unimaginable pain (spasms) or delivering warning shots when you do a familiar movement.
Raw deep pain, constant or unpredictable, affects so much. Every part of your body is involved. The injured site, the surrounding tissues, other parts of your body which compensate for the injury, your mind which has to deal with the pain. Therefore how can one thing treat the problem? Do we fully understand the links between all these areas in treating pain?
The obvious starting point is to deal with the ‘injury’. From my experiences, this seems to be the traditional method. Surely if we heal the injury the other ‘issues’ will disappear? Hmmm, I’m not convinced. With chronic pain which comes about after having pain for an extended period, the road to recovery is a battle. One that I am currently engaged in and its hard work! I believe all the factors previously mentioned are involved in the recovery as much as affecting the levels of current pain. They all need addressing at some stage. Why not try to start doing it all at the same time?
How do you do that? Exercise hurts and strains the injury and other areas of your body, most meds are just covering up the problem, your mind is frazzled with pain and indecision. How do you get a handle on all the problems involved with the pain you feel.
At this stage, in my experience the best course of action is to learn the Alexander Technique, best by taking yourself off to an experienced Alexander Technique teacher, or at the very least buy a book which tells you about it (The article Cure No. 2, The Alexander Technique gives details of a good book). There is no pushing and pulling your body around making an injury worse. Your mind is redirected to things that will help with your recovery rather than just being controlled by pain. Your pain slowly recedes as your body is calmed and stress is taken away from the injury. It’s an incredible process and it can be the start of your journey to control and hopefully have less pain. It can give you the breathing space to deal with any indecision and confusion. It finally puts you in control. That’s a good place to be!