Having pain that won’t go away can be a lonely road and drain your life’s happiness. But remember this, if you are willing to do the work, you can get better.
Often, people in your situation describe the pain as having come out of nowhere, or that the pain has stuck around for far too long. Sometimes the pain started when you did something that you’ve already done a thousand times. In an attempt to find the cause of this pain, you may have had x-rays, MRI scans, and other tests that either didn’t come up with any answers or gave you completely the wrong answer.
You may have had healthcare providers who haven’t fully listened to your story and haven’t really explained to you what’s going on. The diagnosis you may have been given may have conflicted with another diagnosis, which has left you very frustrated and losing hope.
- Been told that something is broken or twisted or ‘out of place’?
- Tried physio/physical therapy but that hasn’t helped?
- Tried therapies that worked for other people but didn’t work for you?
- Been prescribed medications that only helped a little bit or didn’t help at all?
- Found that rest doesn’t help? Prolonged positions such as sitting at a desk, driving in your car, or standing for a long time can make the pain worse.
- Had times and situations where it has just flared up, where you can’t get any position of ease, and often there’s constant pain?
- Stopped doing the things that you once really enjoyed doing.
If you have answered YES to one or more of the above you may feel stuck on this pain journey, and your hope of becoming pain free may be fading!
The latest research shows us that understanding pain is the first step to overcoming your pain and living a meaningful life.
- You have pain and it’s sore, but it’s not sinister
- It dies hurt, but it is not harmful
- You can get better
Physical factors like weak muscles, torn tendons, disc degeneration, and arthritis are often identified as the main source of your pain. When pain that persists for a few months or pain that comes and goes, these physical factors are not to blame. Remember people can have disc bulges, joint degeneration, and muscle tears and have no pain at all. You can become pain-free again without these things changing. Your MRI scan in 6 months’ time when you are pain-free will still show the damage that’s there now. These are 100% normal.
It seems logical to think that if your back is arched or your hips aren’t level then that’s what is causing your pain. This simply isn’t true. Being open to another understanding of why you have pain is often all it takes to begin returning to all the activities you enjoy again.
If you have been trying to sort this out by lying on a plinth getting rubbed or needled or visiting specialists getting scans and blaming these physical issues everyone has, you are looking in the wrong direction
This is not your fault, it’s unfortunately the proper medical approach being used today.
You need a different approach.
Are you willing to try something different?
Are your beliefs holding you back?
What do you think is going on?
What you believe is happening can influence what you feel. If you think you are weak and fragile and you believe you are causing more damage by moving, you will have pain as a protective response. Your beliefs are often influenced by things you have been told by well-meaning but misinformed health professionals. If you’ve been told your spine is fragile, that message will influence how you move, causing stiffness and protectiveness that’s sometimes subconscious. If you have been told your shoulder pain is due to your rotator cuff tearing you will naturally catastrophize when you feel that pain and visualize fibers splitting like a cloth tearing. This will cause you to protect it, move it less and stipend up around it. Unfortunately, it’s the education and your understanding about what’s happening that causes this hypervigilance and fearful protective existence.
Does anything worthwhile come easily?
Think of something you have achieved in your life that means a lot to you. Maybe it’s creating the home you’ve always wanted or raising well-adjusted children or completing your degree, anything you’ve worked hard to achieve. Who did most of the work there? You. Were there times when you wanted to give up or just have an easier option? Of course. Getting your life back and reducing your pain will require the same approach. Being open to a challenge, doing things you don’t really want to do, and doing them consistently until they become a habit. Realizing there will be ups and downs on the journey and realizing that no one is going to ‘fix you. You will not get better by rubbing or someone ‘pushing something back into place. You are the most important person involved in the journey to becoming pain-free, you just need some support and also to be helped along in the right direction. Most people are going in completely the wrong direction and feel they have tried everything. The process can actually be fun and so worthwhile.
If you would like more information on how we approach pain differently get in touch by emailing us on firstname.lastname@example.org