It never fails. As each New Year approaches, people everywhere start making impossible to keep pain-fighting resolutions. Instead of making a vow that lacks a plan to make this year a pain-free year, try adopting these four fibromyalgia (chronic pain) fighting philosophies!
Does your New Year’s resolution have what it takes to fight #chronicpain from #fibromyalgia ?Tweet
Fight Fibromyalgia Pain with Self-Awareness
To keep ahead of a flare or pain, you need to be aware of when it has begun. Chronic pain from fibromyalgia or any other chronic illness doesn’t just appear out of nowhere. There is always a starting point.
Had I read this during my first decade of fighting this wretched illness, I would have been filled with rage. How was I supposed to know when and where pain began when my body was consumed with excruciating pain 24/7?
I started experiencing real pain relief back in 2014 by addressing one symptom at a time. What surprised me was how addressing one symptom led to less reactionary pain. Within months and sometimes days of successfully reducing pain in one area, I was able to notice when and where the pain was originating and how it triggered pain in other areas.
When my body was inflamed head to toe, I couldn’t tell when swelling was occurring around my spine. Now I am able to feel exactly where my spine is experiencing inflammation the moment it starts. This gifts me the opportunity to start treating it and preventing it from spiraling out of control.
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Developing self-awareness of my body and pain sources didn’t come naturally. It took and continues to take great effort to pay close attention to the signs and signals my body is sending me.
One way is to keep a daily journal. By tracking how your body feels from head to toe multiple times throughout the course of a day, you will begin to paint a picture of what your body is telling you.
By logging how you physically feel in general, points of pain that you are able to pinpoint, and including your daily activities, you will also be able to find out which movements are hurting or helping. This will also help you figure out what activities may need to be modified or replaced.
For an example of how to do this, view my post The Importance of Journaling.
Here is an example of a daily health journal page I use. As you can see, being aware of my pain sources and levels is just part of being self-aware.
Ignoring pain or not addressing it before it spirals out of control leads to more time down and less time to do what you desire.
Spend this new year listening to your body and giving it what it needs before it reaches the point of throwing a long-term fit.
Open Your Mind to New Pain Fighting Possibilities
If you haven’t experienced any pain relief or reduction of debilitating symptoms, 2020 maybe your year of becoming open to trying new therapies, treatments, and more.
While we obviously won’t see a cure this year, there is hope and the possibility of reducing pain from fibromyalgia, psoriatic arthritis, and other painful chronic illnesses.
Don’t write off treatments or declare another useless if you haven’t tried it.
Pharmaceutical medications failed me. But that didn’t mean that there wasn’t something out there that could improve the quality of my life. Not everything I tried helped. However, what did help made a significant difference and had I not been open to trying something new, I would have never experienced the relief I had once thought could never be relieved.
Open up to what?
For me, it was opening my mind to accept alternative and natural pain relief treatments. Thankfully, I not only opened up to the idea of but began treating chronic pain with cannabis. The day I received my first medical marijuana recommendation is the day I have declared the “First day of my new life”. Later, PEMF therapy took my relief to a whole new level.
My new life isn’t pain-free but is significantly less painful than it was before. Through a combination of alternative pain relief options, lifestyle changes, and modifying activities, I have found a way to coexist with my chronic illnesses.
Looking for alternative ideas to reduce your chronic pain? Check these out:
Accept That You Will Never be Pain-Free
With chronic illnesses like fibromyalgia, psoriatic and rheumatoid arthritis, etc., the odds of ever being 100% pain-free are extremely low, if not next to zero.
Some people believe that accepting their chronic pain is the same as giving up, but they are wrong. Accepting your chronic illness/pain is actually the first step to learning to live with it. It’s impossible to forge a relationship with or learn to get along with something you refuse to accept is part of your life/body.
In my eBook, Make Pain Your Bitch: How to Dominate Your Chronic Life, I share how acceptance of my chronic illnesses/pain was the foundation of my discovering ways to live a life I love. I can tell you from experience that living like we did before becoming chronically ill does more harm than good.
Waiting for a cure
It is okay to hope, pray, and wish for a cure. Who wouldn’t want to be healed? The reality we live with is that there isn’t a cure nor will there be one anytime soon. We also live in a time where doctors are being punished for treating said pain. Accepting that pain relief was not going to come from my doctor’s prescription pad forced me to find alternative solutions.
What will accepting your illness look like for you? That depends on what is causing your body the most trauma. Acceptance may lead to the use of a mobility aid, trying new pain relief options, or changing your lifestyle.
Have a Willingness to Take Action
Knowing and wanting to make changes isn’t good enough. We have to be willing to take action!
There was a two year period when I had a desire to make changes to how I addressed chronic pain and lived my life, but was afraid to take action.
Why was I afraid? I feared failure. What if trying this product didn’t help? What if another helped but cost more than I was comfortable spending?
Finally realizing that it was time to take action, I took the plunge. I became a pain-fighting warrior. Every day is filled with physical evaluations and plans to keep pain from escalating.
Springing into action
The actions I took may differ from yours. I turned to natural and alternative pain relief options. Cannabis, PEMF therapy, herbal remedies, dietary changes, exercising with my body’s limitations in mind, and modifying physical activities with the use of mobility aids.
The cost of some of the options I chose to try was terrifying at first. However, as I became more aware of how they helped, I was able to find ways to continue use and cutting back how much I was spending on them. For example, my first wheelchair was donated to me by a church. While I had to cut back on our family grocery budget to first begin fighting chronic pain with cannabis, I later learned how to spend less by making my own oils and edibles.
Not a day goes by where I don’t think about what I am doing and whether how I am doing it will increase or decrease my pain level. It may seem unfair to have to think about pain, its source, and my actions 24/7, but when you think about the pain I have avoided, it would really be unfair to ignore the needs of my body.
Let’s make 2020 a year that we thrive despite our #chronicillness ! #fibromyalgia #psoriaticarthritis #chronicpain #spoonie #newyear #HappyNewYear2020Tweet
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