10 Best Solutions Fo Pain Self-Management

Have you heard the line, “If you keep doing what you've always done, you'll keep getting more of what you've always gotten?” It's absolutely true, so you might want to try something. I have 10 good intentions for you, as a pain patient.

Ten different pieces of advice intended to help reduce your pain. In any case, they will definitely ensure that you feel more comfortable and that will make your life easier.

What's there to lose, anyway? Why not give it a try at least.

Resolution 1:

Get an endorphin rush: more action and exercise!

Maybe you move less because you're worried that this will result in your pain. You may not do any exercise at all for this same reason.

This is not good because it decreases your muscle strength, resulting in more pain. Lots of research has shown that keeping moving really is extremely important and is almost never the cause of more pain. So make sure that you go walking or cycling at least half an hour every day, preferably in the open air. Also regularly swimming or doing exercises in the water (aqua-gym) is good for your strength, conditioning and general wellbeing.

Caution: do not overdo it. If you jump in and start exercising like crazy in January, the chances are that you will over-exert yourself and cause an injury. That will give you an excellent excuse to stop right away but that's not the easy way out you're looking for, is it?

Better to ask your doctor or physical therapist what exercises you can do. When you're mobile enough, sure you can work out in a gym. Get yourself a good coach for starters, preferably a personal trainer or a physiotherapist.

In the meanime you can also do simple exercises at home. Start off easy, and build up. Repeat each exercise a few times, then increase the number of repetitions as the exercise gets easier, and add more, slightly heavier exercises to your routine. If your exercise material varies, it is even more effective. It should not make any difference whether you have a good or bad day. Try the exercises and activities on an equal level each day.

By moving and exercising, endorphins will be produced by your nervous system. The principle function of endorphins is to inhibit the transmission of pain signals; they may also produce a feeling of euphoria very similar to that produced by other opioids. So in simple words: endorphins are brain chemicals that help improve your mood while also blocking pain signals.

Resolution 2:

Customize scheduled relaxation in your life.

It looks so obvious, but very few pain patients take or find the time to conscious relax now and then. Breathing and relaxation exercises or meditation can help you to calm your mind and body. Also yoga and mindfulness can help. Ask your GP or people around you where you can follow a good course.

If you prefer to just get up and do it at home, try this:

Create a peaceful environment, so no TV, roommates, mobile phones or iPads in the room. If you like to have some music in the background then buy something like an ocean sounds CD, or twittering birds in the gardens. Go easy: lie in a position that produces as little pain as possible. Close your eyes and concentrate on your breathing. Then, go to all the individual body parts, first tightening, and then relaxing them. Start with your left foot and work your way up to your head. Make sure you keep breathing quietly and regularly. If you have done this a number of times, it takes less and less effort and sooner you will be able to relax even under less soothing conditions. Try to apply this technique at times when you have a lot of pain or your body is tense and / or your mind is stressed. You will notice that the relaxation and quiet breathing you already know, can give pain relief.

In addition to these exercises you can relax by reading a book, listening to music, walking, or doing something fun with family and friends.

Resolution 3:

Cut back on alcohol, especially in the late evening.

Pain makes sleep difficult, and alcohol can make sleep problems worse. If you're living with chronic pain, drinking less or no alcohol can improve your quality of life.

You need a good night's sleep to make the stress on your body and mind, that is provoked by the pain, disappear. Yes, it's true that alcohol makes you fall sleep easier, but it is not a 'good' sleep. With alcohol in your blood you have fewer and shorter REM phases and your sleep is lighter, so you may wake up in the middle of night and have trouble getting back to sleep. You will not be fresh and energetic after such a night. I have read studies showing that ensuring a good night's sleep is the very first important step towards improvement of chronic pain. Therefore, do everything you can to optimize your sleep. So no alcohol, especially before bed.

Also, I know 'Sleep Well Tea' is not the first alternative you might think of, but give it a try for a few evenings, and you may be surprised by the outcome.

Resolution 4:

Make it easier for your doctor to help you.

Keep a log or journal of your daily 'pain score' to help you track your pain. Get started today. Give the pain of the day a rating between 1-10 (1 being no pain at all, and 10 being the most severe, intolerable pain you can imagine). Each evening, write this figure down in your notebook, together with the activities that you've had that day and note the result for your body.

The next time you go to your family doctor or specialist, take your booklet and discuss what you have listed with her or him. Your doctor may be able to draw conclusions from your notes and give you a more targeted, effective medication or prescribe treatment.

In any case, it is a good idea to keep a daily diary for yourself, if only to write things down regularly. Studies have shown that it helps to reduce your stress and anxiety, and as you know, stress, anxiety and fear are closely related to pain.

For three years now, I myself have used the booklet: 'One line a day – a five-year memory book'. I write down every night in a few lines what I want to remember from that day. The great thing about it is that I can always read back what happened or what I did on that same day, 1, 2, and 3 years ago. Sometimes I write about very common things when I had 'just another day in the house', but often I find myself writing down beautiful and comforting things. It also helps put things in perspective now and then.

I have given this book to so many friends as a present, and everyone just loves it. And it gets better every year you'll be using it!

Resolution 5:

Finally quit smoking!

Many chronic pain patients light up a cigarette to put out the misery of their pain. Ironically, it has been found that smoking is counter-productive. The harmful chemicals in a cigarette result in worse blood circulation, as well as a slower healing process and an increased risk of degeneration of the intervertebral discs (a frequently mentioned cause of lower back pain), so you're only worsening your pain with that cigarette. You might think: “That cigarette is the only thing I can still enjoy in life”, but I dare say that is not true. I'm sure you can enjoy many more things. If quitting smoking gives you the reward of less pain, then you have much more to enjoy anyway. And find out how to find other things to enjoy in Resolution number 8. Really, if you needed a good reason to quit smoking, you have it now. Quitting smoking can have a positive impact on your pain. This is certainly true for chronic back pain and fibromyalgia. Ask your doctor for help in stopping.

Resolution 6:

Eat better and healthier

Give your body a boost and eat healthy. If you have to deal with pain every day, surely you want to do everything it takes to reduce that pain rather than make things worse? Really, one of the best ways to get a strong body is to eat healthy foods. A balanced diet improves your blood glucose levels, helps you to come / stay at a good weight, reduces the risk of heart failure and makes it easier for your body to digest food. I'm not saying that you should totally dive in the hype of 'superfoods', like quinoa, wheat grass, Acai berries, kale juice and Chia seeds right away, but if you make sure that whole grains, fish, fresh vegetables and fruit , and low-fat proteins are on your menu, you are well on the way.

Foods that are often said to have a positive effect on chronic pain are: ginger, olive oil (especially the extra virgin), salmon and other fish with lots of omega-3, red grapes, thyme, cherries and the most often mentioned smasher: Turmeric (Kurkuma)! The latter is really getting put forward again and again as the very best nutritional element against chronic pain. You can easily use it as a herb on just about everything, and you can also buy it in pill form. Make sure you always combine it with some fats in your meal (like olive oil) and preferably also with black pepper. In that way, your body will absorb the maximum amount of turmeric.

Foods that may have a negative impact on your pain are: tomatoes, potatoes, gluten and all sweeteners except stevia.

Resolution 7:

Respect your limitations and alternate your activity and rest.

You can manage your pain better when you take good care of yourself. Alternate your activity with rest breaks. To do this, use the Salami technique of Dr. Frits Winter or the spoon theory of Christine Miserando (read it here ). Do not wait until your body indicates that you need a break. Often you may have stepped over your limits by that time. Divide your tasks during the day.

Lie down; do not sit when you take a rest. Sitting is much more of a physical burden than lying down is, and even more than standing. Recently I even read: “sitting is the new smoking”.

For the last couple of years, I always lie down when I take a coffee break (at least when I'm in my own home), when I read a magazine or book, when I'm using my iPad for emailing and surfing on the web, when I am watching TV, and certainly when I write. I'm convinced that the fact that I am functioning a lot better and have less back pains than I did three years ago is partly due to this new habit.

Learn to say 'no' and ask for help. Forget about a shine clean house and get out of the habit of wanting to finish a task before you take a break. It will be too late most of the time and the damage will already be done. It might be a good idea to keep a weekly schedule for your activities (and make sure you keep to it!)

Resolution 8:

Find ways to distract yourself from the pain so you enjoy life more and get out of your comfort zone.

Zooming in on pain only makes that pain grow. Try to focus on this misery as little as possible. Of course, you can not be derived 24/7, but you have probably noticed that the pain seemed better when you were watching that exciting episode of CSI or that time when you and your friend were having such good laughs together. Use that knowledge and look for activities that you like or find interesting. Perhaps it is finally time for that cooking course, for learning Spanish online, or getting a little pussycat or dog.

If you think you can no longer do all the things you once liked, due to the pain, it is about time to get out of your comfort zone and search for activities that you had never considered before. Ask the people around you to think along with you. Maybe you are a very creative person and you would enjoy designing jewelry, writing poems or painting. Or prove you're a languages ​​wonder and you can get started as a translator. That can all be done from the sofa or your bed. Check out all the opportunities that are offered on an online platform like fiverr.com.

If anyone had told me five years ago that I would have written two books, by the end of 2014, one of which was translated into English and sold around the world, and that I would be giving presentations in The Netherlands and Belgium, I would probably have called them crazy. Out-of-the-box thinking, and good computer support, made it all possible for me, so why would not it for you?

Resolution 9:

Make sure that you know everything about your medication.

It is important that you know exactly what medications you take, exactly what they are prescribed for and what side effects they have for you.

Also, find out if there are any alternatives. I assume you prefer to have a clear mind in the daytime and to have the highest possible energy level. When you're drowsy until the afternoon due to your pain reliever and you can not put one leg in front of the other, then ask to your doctor if there is a better medicine for you. Do not just go on with the same medication when it does more bad than good, but also do not just stop without getting in touch with the doctor about it. Medication can affect everyone differently, and sometimes you will benefit more from another med, and have fewer side effects. It may take some experimenting before your doctor and you know the best way to go.

Monitor this yourself. You are co-responsible for the treatment of your pain. Pull the alarm when medications do not help or if the remedy is worse than the disease.

In addition to consultation with your doctor it may also be very productive to have a conversation with a pharmacist. They often have a better overview of your medication, especially when your medication has been prescribed by different doctors.

Resolution 10

You're not alone!

Did you know that as many as one in five adults in the western world has to deal with chronic pain? And even though this is unknown to a large part of the population, you must know that you are not the only one.

One of the most important things for you to do is to communicate about your pain. Tell your family members and friends about how you feel and what it means to have to cope with pain day in and day out. If you do not tell them and explain it to them, you can not expect them to understand what you're going through and what you need. Ask them for support and help. Asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness!

Make sure you know exactly how you're medically standing and sharing that with the people around you. If you have great difficulty with telling them feel free to use the Letter to a friend on the website of Support for chronic pain.

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How to Handle Symptoms of Stress Overload

What begins as an emotional pain can become a physical pain as your mind is trying to send a message to you that something is wrong. The physical pain will only be relieved once you have done some constructive work on the emotional pain underlying it. This does not need to be painful in terms of therapy but as a way to develop new positive ways of being. Sometimes emotional pain can begin as a lack of confidence and building confidence will help to combat triggering situations rather than teaching you to avoid scenarios or making you feel worse.

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How to Relieve Sciatica With Acupressure and Magnet Therapy

Sciatica is a fairly common type of pain affecting the sciatic nerve (a large nerve extending from the lower back to the back of each leg). It typically affects middle-aged people: the probability of experiencing sciatic nerve pain, in fact, peaks in our 50s. It is important to stress that the term sciatica describes a set of symptoms rather than a specific disease. And the most common of these symptoms is pain that extends from the lower spine to the buttock and the rear of the leg. Some people may also experience numbness, tingling or muscle weakness in the affected leg. Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve becomes compressed or irritated. This may happen for a number of reasons, although the vast majority of cases are caused by a herniated (or “slipped”) lumbar disc. When sciatica is caused by lumbar disc herniation, treatment is not always necessary as the condition usually increases naturally in the space of a few weeks. However, if symptoms are severe or persistent treatment should be bought.

In the past few years, an increasing number of people have turned to acupressure to relieve acute sciatica pain in a completely natural manner-no painkillers or spinal injections. Acupressure (not to be confused with acupuncture) is an ancient therapy based on the application of physical pressure on specific points along the body. Such pressure improves blood and lymph flow and stimulates the body to release endorphins and oxytocin, therey relieving pain and muscle tension.

Similarly, magnet therapy (also known as magnetic therapy) has been employed for millennia to relieve pain through the healing power of magnets. When placed on the skin (as close to the point of pain as possible), such magnets not only boost peripheral blood circulation, but reduce inflammation too-which can be extremely helpful in alleviating sciatica. Inflammation damages cells by altering their ionic balance: the chemical balance of the cell changes and cellular degeneration occurs. Thankfully, magnets can help restore cellular balance by creating a magnetic field that pulls ions back into alignment.

Today, it is possible to reap the benefits of both acupressure and magnet therapy through a single device: the “magnetic acupressure mat”. Such mat is characterized by the “spiky” plastic disks and the cylindrical bio-magnets that cover one of its sides. However, although many different mats are now available on the market, not all of them are equally effective. In order to choose only the best ones, it is essential to pay attention to a number of elements. First of all, the aforementioned plastic discs. These are commonly known as “flowers” or “florets” and feature a series of tips which should be pyramid-shaped. Also, the number of tips per floret should ideally range between 30 and 36. A lower number may make acupressure too uncomfortable, whereas a higher number may render it too “bland” and, consequently, ineffective. It is also important to check out the mat's padding. The best acupressure mats, in fact, are those filled with vegetable fibers as they are breathable, do not lose their shape over time, do not attract mites, and, more importantly, ensure a more uniform and balanced acupressure. Moreover, unlike foam rubber and other by-products of crude oil, vegetable fibers are completely natural and eco-friendly. Lastly, the magnets should be permanent bio-magnets of medium negative polarity and should be positioned on the mat according to the principles of Stable Field Magnet Therapy. By following these simple tips, you will be able to choose the best acupressure mat and treat sciatica quickly and effectively.

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Product Review: Topricin

I had been experiencing some pretty intense pain in my left foot. This pain happened before and after runs, but not as much during runs. I could tell the pain was there during runs but it did not keep me from running. I was afraid that I had a stress fracture and pondered going to the doctor for an x-ray. I was discouraged that I might have to pause my training at least while running for the foreseeable future.

I first noticed this pain after I began some of the low heart rate zone-2 running during this pre-season training for this upcoming year of training and racing. I was trying to run with a new gate by solidly landing on the middle of the foot and not hitting the heel of the foot. I was determined to get a more precis running position with a slight lean and a smooth gate. After the initial run like this is when I noticed the pain starting.

The pain started in the front ball of the left foot and then began to encompass the whole foot. My toes began to ache as well. The pain was worse when I would wake up in the morning and even had to limp down the stairs in my house. Until I was able to warm up either before the run, swim, or bike, it was painful.

I knew that my foot was slightly swollen so I thought that the pain might just be from the swelling and not actually from a stress fracture. I had Experienced Plantar Fasciitis before which is a pain in the middle of the foot back toward the heel. I knew that this current pain was not that. I also knew that it was not just a pain that would go away easily as it was lingering. Lastly, I was determined not to let the pain sideline me for too long.

I began to take some ibuprofen to help with the inflammation and that seemed to help. As long as I had that ibuprofen in me, my foot did not ache or hurt. I also noticed that my shoe laces which are the elastic kind might have been too tight running over the middle of the top of my foot. I loosen the laces. I also did not notice any discoloring of the foot and determined that it was not a fraction. Maybe this is naive, but I wanted to press on.

After about two months of pain, we arrived at Christmas. I decided that for the two weeks we would be traveling for Christmas I would not run and try and let the foot heel. I did experience some relief, but not much. I actually thought it might have been a waste of time to not run even though the break was nice. I actually did not exercise at all during those two weeks. During the time we were in Texas, my wife experienced some back pain and my mom saved her a pain relief gel to rub in called “Blue Emu.” Yes the stuff that “Will not make you stink.” I decided to use a little of it on my foot to see if I got any relief. It actually felt a little bit better, but the pain was still pretty strong.

When we returned from Christmas, I wanted to get back to my training, but my foot was still in pain. I decided to do some research on any foot specific rubs. I found a product called “Topricin.” I went to the local CVS and found the product. I bought it home and began a to apply the paste immediately. I noticed a little bit of relief, but not a lot. I was upset that I had not started getting any relief. I put the paste on in the morning and at night. After 3-5 days I really started to notice a difference in my pain level. After a couple of weeks, my pain is actually gone. I am able to do any of the disciplines of running, biking, or swimming with no pain. I wake up in the morning and have full function of my foot without having to warm up first. This product certainly helped my foot pain in an incredible way. I have paused using it for now as I am doing well, but will keep it handy if I am ever experiencing any more foot pain.

I highly recommend Topricin to you for any of your foot pain.

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Neck Pain: Four Symptoms That Signal a Visit to the Chiropractor

Are you experiencing pain in your neck and shoulders? If you have tried over-the-counter pain medication to no avail, you may want to consider a trip to the chiropractor. Achiness and stiffness are two of the most common complaints that chiropractors see in their patients. They can lead to tension headaches, difficulty in turning the head, and general soreness. These problems could be severe and in need of prompt attention. If you are having any of the following symptoms, get them checked out as soon as you can make sure there is nothing serious going on:

Numbness in the Neck

One of the first symptoms you may notice with your pain is a feeling of numbness and tingling. You may notice the numb feelings in your face, shoulders, and even on your hands and fingers. If you are beginning to feel tingling sensations in any of these areas, you should try to get into the chiropractor's office as soon as you can, as this could be caused by a pinched nerve or other nerve issue that needs to be corrected as quickly as possible to reduce further damage.

You Have Dizziness Associated with Your Pain

When you are having problems in this area, you may also experience some dizziness. It is most noticeable when you stand up or sit down quickly. You could also become dizzy when you turn your head in a certain direction. Dizziness accompanied with neck aches can range from benign to extremely serious. If you pass out after dizzy spells, you should be seen as soon as you can, as this is often a symptom of a lack of blood flow to the brain.

It is Difficult to Fall Asleep

Those who have issues with their neck may also find it difficult to fall sleep. A lack of sleep can exacerbate your aches and contribute to excess fatigue, stress, and irritability. Fortunately, an adjustment can help relieve those issues and help you get a better night's sleep.

You Hear Crunching Noises When You Turn Your Head

When you turn your head and hear a crunching or grinding sound, it can be quite alarming. This is actually a common condition that may not be as scary as it sounds. If you are not hurting while you hear those noises, your problem may not be quite so bad. However, if you have pain accompanied with those crunching sounds, you need to quickly schedule an appointment with a chiropractor to get to make sure you have not severely injured yourself.

Neck problems are not something to play around with. If you are having problems in this area or in the shoulders, or are experiencing tension headaches, you should see a chiropractor as soon as you can. Having a thorough adjustment done at least once a week can help alleviate the aches you are experiencing, providing you with a better quality of life.

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Signs That You Have a Hernia in Your Stomach

Rather than jumping straight to the most common signs of a stomach hernia, I’d like to take a few minutes of your time and explain what hernia actually is. What Is A Hernia? A hernia occurs when there is a weakness in the muscle, through which an internal part of the body pushes through.

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4 Tips for Talking to Your Doctor About Better Pain Management

One of the most difficult aspects of managing your chronic pain is communicating that pain to your doctor or healthcare team. Often, the patient is only aware of how bad their pain feels. There is no objective test that measures how bad you feel or how much you are suffering. Since pain is invisible, and since so many people are reluctant to talk about their pain for fear of showing weakness, it can often cause mistrust and difficulties in their relationships. Here are four tips for discussing management of pain with your doctor and loved one.

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How Technology Empowers People With CRPS

Raising awareness for poorly understood conditions is an extremely important but often overlooked issue within the medical community and society at large. Conditions like CRPS, ones for which the causes and treatments are difficult to define, are not well known enough and as a result they are unfairly ignored by society.

What is CRPS?

CRPS's full name is Complex Regional Pain Syndrome and is a condition that, according to the NHS, affects every 1 in 3,800 people in the UK; the majority of sufferers are women. Not very much is known about the condition at this point, only that it affects a single limb (usually after an accident) and results in frequent and debilitating pain. The skin becoming so sensitive that even a light touch can result in intense pain, and while some cases resolve them over time, some people have to live with the condition for the rest of their lives. Also known as Reflexive Sympathic Dystrophy (RDS), the only forms of treatment currently available are limited and offer no long-term solutions. Instead, a person with CRPS can be offered physical therapy, painkillers and training in pain management methods in order to help them get from one day to the next.

What can be done to help CRPS Sufferers?

As the condition is not very well known there is a clear need for more awareness in society in order to lead to more research and the development of new, innovative treatments, but there's also the issue of enabling and empowering people with CRPS so they can continue to live their lives uninhibited. There are some CRPS awareness products currently available online that have the potential to be used on a wider scale awareness campaign. The procedures for such products can be beneficial to a lot of people, bringing them more resources and forms of support previously unavailable to them.

What products are there?

A med-alert USB dog tag from Burning Nights, for instance, offers an innovative way for a person with CRPS to agree in the event of pain problems outside of the home. Burning Nights is a CRPS awareness site that has developed products to encourage awareness and, in the case of the dog tags, help a person in the event of an accident. Combining practicality with modern technology, tools like these could be incredibly valuable to people with conditions like CRPS in which experiences vary from person to person.

The USB can be worn around the neck and comes with pre-loaded information that you can edit on your computer at home, allowing a person with CRPS to store all of their important medical information including your doctor's information along with scans of prescriptions and cards for organ contributions, blood type and so on. If you take a fall, you do not have to worry about explaining your condition; you can simply hand over the USB and have those helping you access the information with ease. Something like this can give a person with CRPS more freedom and autonomy, a vital part of maintain a healthy emotional life.

The efforts of Burning Nights and other awareness organizations are eroding the misconceptions and ideas about poorly understood conditions, and products like the med-alert dog tag can revolutionize the way sufferers live their lives.

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Getting Treatment For Jaw Joint Disorder

Also known as temporomandibular joint (TMJ), jaw muscle disorders, are a category of painful conditions which affect your jaw joint and those muscles controlling the movements of your jaw. Although injury plays a considerable role in a number of TMJ problems, for a lot of people, the symptoms appear to start without any apparent reason.

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Improving Asessment Through Understanding of Complex Conditions

Assessments for physical and mental conditions are necessary to determine who is 'fit for work' and who requires additional support through benefits, care and so on. However, this is not something that can be determined easily; there are a lot of different factors to consider, all of which can affect a person differently depending on their condition. There will be instances in which it is obvious to an assessor if a person requires additional help, but there are plenty of cases that have been reported over the last few years in which problems have arisen because the assessor incorrectly determined a person fit to work. There have been suggestions that some of these cases are down to corrupt practices, it's not always as clear cut as that.

For instance, there are various conditions a person may suffer from that have no immediate physical symptoms or even consistent symptoms, and this can complicate the assessment process and make it difficult to draw a fair, reflective conclusion. Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, otherwise known as CRPS or Reflex Sympathic Dystrophy (RSD), is a condition that has proved very difficult to treat because of the vagueness of the condition. It is known to be a continuous condition that is triggered by an injury to a limb, resulting in debilitating pain that can last for the rest of the person's life. A condition like this would be incredibly difficult to assess for the simple reason that CRPS sufferers have days where their pain is more manageable than others, while they also have days where the pain is so severe that they would certainly not be considered fit to work.

What can be done to combat this? Aside from a revision of assessment policies that takes such conditions into consideration, there is also a huge need for better societal understanding. Better understanding leads to more research, and the lack of understanding already surrounding the condition means that there is also a lack of resources available. This includes crps support for carers, friends and families, the network of people that often require the most support in order to help the person closest to them to cope. In instances like this, it's not enough to provide support just to the person suffering from the condition.

In order to improve the quality of assessment for people suffering from complex conditions like CRPS, there needs to be a larger amount of resources and support networks that can be easily accessed from the home. It's vital that there is a renewed focus on reflex sympathetic dystrophy awareness in order to prevent people with the condition being incorrectly assessed and being forced into situations that they are not capable of carrying out. Assessments of this nature can lead to increases in depression and anxiety, further injuries and in the worst cases, death. It's a particularly hot topic at the moment in the light of severe government cuts and if there's one thing that tells us, it's that raised awareness is the key to improving the quality of life for people suffering from this poorly understood condition.

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Internal or External Pain Relief?

There are many different forms of medicine for many different problems and symptoms. It is important to make sure that you get the correct medicine for your issue.

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What Can A Magnetic Knee Brace Do For Me?

What is magnetic therapy?

Magnets have been used for centuries to heal all sorts of different health issues, however it's only been in the past 25 years or so that research and development has picked up in this area. More and more devices now make use of magnets to provide pain relief. For example, you can purchase bracelets to tie pain in your wrists and arms, magnetic shoe inserts to tie foot and ankle pain, magnetic knee supports to tie pain in your knees, and the list goes on.

The general theory behind magnetic therapy is that that it is supposed to relate swelling, pain and / or general discomfort in the area causing you pain. The iron in your blood cells is expected to be attracted to the magnets, which in turn moves the blood around to stimulate circulation. The reason I used the term “supposedly to” is the fact that there is not enough evidence yet to confirm that it does help. Several trials have been conducted over the years and the results have shown some promise, but the results are not conclusive.

Even though the benefits are still being debated to this day, it does not change the fact that millions of people do believe in it given how big this industry has become and although I have not tried it myself, I do believe that it does provide relief for some people.

Types of Magnetic Knee Support

There are a few different types of support that you can buy, if you choose to go down this road. Before we get into that though, I would like to cover an important aspect that will help you determine which kind you need and that is magnet strength.

When reviewing different magnetic knee supports, you will notice that most of the technical details will list the amount of “Gauss” that the brace will produce. This can be anywhere from 200 to 20,000 (and some produce even more now). The higher the number, the deer the magnet will go. Keep in mind that depending on your situation, it may not always be good idea to follow the mantra “Go Big Or Go Home”. It is important to choose the proper strength.

Now, let's get into the different types of magnetic knee supports:

1. Magnetic Knee Guard

Magnetic knee guards are a safe and low-cost way to help you with minor knee discomfort. As you are moving around, it provides pain relief by absorbing some of the force at the knee and by applying concentrated compression and warmth throughout the joint liner and patellar tendon. Common magnetic knee guards have a Gauss rating between 1000-6000.

The Pro Band Sports KneedIT XM knee guard is one of the most popular knee guards around. For some people, it has been known to treat minor knee pain associated with Arthritis, Tendonitis and Chondromalacia. This guard has two magnets in each knee guard. One on each side of your patella. The interior Gauss is 3950 per magnet and the exterior Gauss is approximately 650 per magnet.

2. Magnetic Knee Sleeve

Magnetic knee sleeves could be an option for people suffering mild to moderate pain caused by tendonitis, arthritis, sports and work related injuries. They have a higher Gauss rating (usually between 5,000-15,000) which help quickly reduce pain and swelling but they are also a good choice if you want to maintain a physical lifestyle.

The Therion Balance Knee Sleeve is a popular choice nowdays. It has ten large ceramic 4,300 gauss magnets that surround the entire knee, which may be why some users are raving about its effectiveness in reducing pain and swelling. Some users also claim that the Acticel fabric breaths well so you can wear it for longer periods of time without getting uncomfortable.

3. Magnetic Knee Brace

Magnetic knee braces are designed to help you with moderate to severe knee discomfort caused by arthritis, knee sprains, post-surgical recovery, and other serious knee related injuries. Most magnetic knee braces have a Gauss rating somewhere between 10000-30000.

The Therion Platinum Magnetic Knee Support looks to be a popular choice. One of its great features is the ability to adjust the compression, and it also provides greater support for knee instability. It has fourteen 13,800 gauss neodymium and 4,300 gauss ceramic magnets located below the knee cap, along its side and behind. The manufacturer indicates that this combination allows for faster pain relief and healing due to the magnetic coverage.

Disclaimer / Warning – I am not a doctor and I am not qualified to provide medical advice. This article was posted for informational purposes only and should not be interpreted as medical advice. Pay close attention to some of the warnings before you purchase magnetic knee supports. For example, most indicate that although they are safe and non-invasive, they should not be used by people with heart pacemakers or defibrillators because they may impair the functioning of those devices.

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Coping With Chronic Pain: The Willingness to Risk

THOUGHT OF THE DAY. For two years, the first thing I experienced when I woke and the last thing I felt before falling asleep was pain in my thigh from a less than successful hip replacement. I began a life of coping with chronic pain.

Repeated examinations by the orthopedic surgeon showed my new hip was fine. Bone grown around the prosthetic, the joint was tight, and the x-rays showed my hip to be “a textbook example” of successful hip surgery.

Deniability and Caution

When the surgeon smoked – which I assumed was a form of self-congratulations since I did not thank him – I asked, “If the surgery was so successful, why am I coping with pain?” He thought for a minute then said, “It's not from the surgery. Let's try physical therapy,” as if the pain had nothing to do with the operation.

“Can I go back to running?” I asked. “No, do not ever run, the joint will fail.” I limped out of his office with a script for three months of physical therapy and hope that in my hand was the holy grail of pain reduction. With it, coping with chronic pain would become a memory.

At the end of fourteen sessions, still coping with chronic pain, I asked the therapist, “Can I run?” “No, do not ever run, the joint will fail.

Playing the Odds When Coping With Chronic Illness

I looked for studies comparing the failure rate of people who ran after a hip replacement and those who did not run. I did not find one study, but many antidotal comments by surgeons. They were unanimous: Do not run, if you do the sky will fall.

At a Christmas party, I presented the lack of evidence to another orthopedic surgeon. “Do not ever run,” he said, as if memorizing the line was a requirement for completing a med school. “The hip will fail sooner.” “How much sooner?” I asked. “Hard to say, but sooner.”

The Gamble

The literature indications I have an 85% chance my hip will last 20 years if I care for it. That means I should not have a problem until I'm 87 years old if I'm “nice” to the joint. And the cost? Living with pain probably until I die. I weighed the risks of reducing the life of my joint against the possibility of reducing the pain. I decided to run again and see if my leg would fall off.

It's been a month and my joint has not loosened, my leg is still attached to my body, and, the pain I experienced every day for two years is almost gone.

The TakeAway. Living with chronic pain can result in a grudging acceptance of a less than positive lifestyle or learning how to cope. What happens less often is the willingness to try something different, or even something warned against. Am I recommend everyone who's had a hip replaced start running? Absolutely not! But the lesson I learned is the willingness to risk can lessen what's making your life miserable.

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Knee Replacement Surgery Facts You Must Know

Knee replacement surgery is generally performed when the knee joint is damaged to such an extent that it poses a hindrance in the normal functioning of the knee. Here are some of the facts you must know about this surgery before you make a decision.

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Chiropractors to Relieve Your Pain

The human population is on an exponential increase and with that, the number of vehicles on the road has also increased linearly. This has again increased the number of auto accidents that happen every year. Any accident will cause at least a small injury to the passengers inside the vehicle.

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