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Natural Pain Remedies

Are You Living With Diverticulitis?

Are You Living With Diverticulitis?

Introduction

First off, this article is a minor divergence from the rest of my posts, because it is about a different pain.  Some of the related articles apply here. Others do not. But because it does deal with pain, and because I have been living with diverticulitis for some time now, I knew it was important to write about.  

So if you are living with this problem, and want to know more about it from a non-medical person, than this is your article.  I have spent time researching, applying what I have learned, and in the hospital for surgery. It is my hope that you will find some answers here that might help you with this disease.  Want to emphasize I am just a fellow sufferer, so please use this article for reference only. If you have this problem, see a doctor. Things could get serious.

Mikael Haggstrom

Diverticulitis

So what is diverticulitis?   According to WebMD, it is an inflammation or infection of small pouches called diverticula that develop along the walls of the intestines. From my research and talking with doctors there are no known indicators of why these occur.  As we age there is an increase in this happening. Genetics seems to play a part. My paternal aunt suffered from it; which I found out when I had my most recent occurrences. Click this link to see an image of what I am describing.  I couldn’t find one that I could use legally. 

Different from Diverticulosis

What is diverticulosis?  I heard this term bounced around like I was supposed to know what it meant.  Which I didn’t. The definition of diverticulosis is when the diverticula form in the pockets of your intestines. Apparently this isn’t a problem unless they become inflamed which is what diverticulitis is. Generally a person doesn’t know they have diverticulosis because there aren’t any symptoms.  Diverticulosis is usually diagnosed from a sigmoidoscopy.  The doctor can see if the diverticulum (singular) or diverticula (plural) have formed.  

Symptoms

Pain.  In my experience, a cramping ache; not super acute but uncomfortable nonetheless.  

Other symptoms might be; vomiting, constipation, nausea, and even bleeding from your rectum.  Of course if there is bleeding get to the doctor now.  

Take your temperature.  Watch for dehydration. (Did you know a simple test for checking if you are dehydrated is to grab/pinch the back of the skin on one hand between the thumb and forefinger of the other?  If the skin doesn’t go back to original flatness right away you are probably dehydrated. See a doctor.)  

Here is a good article about the illness from Physiopedia.  This article includes more symptoms.

Diet

This has been the most frustrating part of this experience.  When I was in the hospital in June I asked every health care professional what sort of diet I should be following.  I did this because I am very proactive about my health. I truly wanted to avoid having this problem. Here are some of the answers: nothing spicy, low fiber, high fiber, nothing fried.  What the heck?  

There is confusing information on the web too.  The general information isn’t that helpful. The old wisdom was to avoid seeds and nuts.  That isn’t the case anymore.  

So I figured I would ask my gastroenterologist.  After all, he knows intestines! This appointment was a followup after my hospital stay in June.  In the hospital I had been told there would be a possibility of removal of part of my colon, where the infection was.  And the possibility of an ostomy bag.  

The gastro doctor was circumspect about the surgery; he said how much colon can you remove?  I liked this attitude. If there was something I could do about it myself, then I was motivated.  So I asked what I should be eating. His answer was first a lesson.

He said that diverticulitis was not a known disease until man started to mill grains.  After that, it appears on the scene. And countries like Asia and Africa that don’t eat lots of milled grains have less incidents of it.  So, he basically told me to cut out grains including wheat, corn, and rice. He also recommended not eating potatoes. He said quinoa was okay.  No fried foods.  

Now I had been avoiding wheat because gluten gave me cramps and diarrhea.  But I love corn and eat rice and potatoes. But if I can avoid any further bouts of this disease I will not eat those things.  

He said a high fiber diet is good because it moves things through the intestines.  So I am eating mostly fruit, vegetables, and protein. I’ve lost weight. Which is a good thing as I needed to.  But not this way!

Dominik and Frederike Schneider, Pixabay

There is also a recommendation to avoid alcohol.  Alcohol irritates the lining and you want your lining as healthy as possible.  This wasn’t a problem for me to not drink; I avoid alcohol.  

So I followed the advice as best I could, but the infection never went away completely.  After consults with a few doctors, including the gastro doc, surgery was recommended.  

My experience  

You can skip this section unless you want to read about what happened.  It might be helpful to you to decide what you should do. Like learning from my mistakes.  

This problem put me in the emergency room about four years ago.  I thought I had the flu. I kept throwing up, had chills and my stomach hurt.  Mistake number one; I didn’t monitor my temperature. If I had, I would have realized I was very sick.  I went to Urgent Care on a Saturday. They gave me IV fluids and sent me home. (I don’t think they should have sent me home.) Sunday I was no better, and since Urgent Care wasn’t open, I went to the ER.  Being it was a county facility, it was busy, but bless that staff, within 15 minutes I was admitted. They recognized how sick I was. Diagnosis; diverticulitis with a secondary urinary tract infection and border spesis.  That spesis can be fatal! (It was a primary complication in Christopher Reeve’s death.)

What I learned from this experience is to monitor my temperature.  I bought a thermometer. Whenever I get sick I track my temperature.  Temperature is a good indicator of how sick you are. Get to a doctor if it is above 100 degrees.  See this article for more about your temperature; At What Temperature Should You Actually Start Worrying About a Fever?  And check to see if you are dehydrated.  If you are throwing up, chances are you will become dehydrated.  This is dangerous and should also take you to the doctor.

Fast forward to 2019.  Recognized the symptoms in January.  Went to the doctor. Prescribed antibiotics.  Completed. Felt ok for a week. Recognized the symptoms in February.  Ditto, ditto, ditto, ditto. Felt okay March and April. Recognized the symptoms in May.  Ditto x 4. And again in June, the same.  

But this time the doctor was concerned that I wasn’t getting better so she referred me to get a CT scan.  I spent the afternoon in the Imaging and Urgent Care departments, to finally be told that there was a possible cyst/growth/infection in my diverticula and they wanted to admit me to the hospital.  Spent another six hours in the ER, waiting for a bed. (I am not here to complain about the hospital or my care. They just didn’t have any beds. All my caregivers were wonderful. I received excellent care.)  Spent 3 days in the hospital on IVs and antibiotics.  

Discharged with an IV line in me to administer antibiotics in hopes of killing the infection.  After a month of that, the infection was still present and there was worry of it attaching to my bladder.  Surgery scheduled for September. I was on antibiotics for three months, just to keep the infection at bay.  Successful laparoscopic surgery 14 days ago, where they removed about 10cm of my colon. I am not allowed to drive yet, or to take a bath.  I can shower.  

Recovery is to walk everyday, a little more each day.  Apparently moving around can help the gastro-intestinal system move too.  Movement and exercise are things I have been promoting in my other articles for pain management.  See one of my articles here

All this is to say that this illness can really impact your life!  And my advice is to keep really vigilant about your health. I should have asked to have a CT scan after the second bout in February.  But I didn’t know any better. I didn’t have a fever after all. But you should learn from my mistakes. Advocate for yourself. Do research.  Find a doctor that will advocate for you.  

If You Have Surgery

My surgery was the best of all possible outcomes.  The surgeon said it went really well. (I did everything to the letter to prepare; fluids only, drink that disgusting GoLytely stuff that cleans you out.) I didn’t have to get an ostomy bag.  

Pain was minimal at the 3 incision sites.  More pain from the gas that they pump into you.  Each day the pain was less. I was on clear liquids for a day, then regular food.  There was a multipage packet sent home with me with what I could and couldn’t do. The instructions recommended a low fiber diet.  But I had already started my high fiber in the hospital and had no problems, so I stuck with that. (Here again, there is no consensus.)  

Something You Can Do In the Meantime

One product the Gastroenterology doctor did recommend was Citrucel.

 

He said he likes it best because it helps both constipation and diarrhea.  I have recommended it to a friend who has trouble with constipation and it has helped him.  

I applied for an  that you can click on to order this product.  But until I get that link, I still wanted to get this information out to you. Here is a picture I took of my bottle.  You can get it in powder form too.

 

 

Conclusion

What about you?  What has been your experience with this disease?  Did this article answer your question? I would like to know any positive or negative feedback.  I want this article to help those of us who suffer from this.  

Please leave me a comment.  You will be helping me and others.  Thank you.  

Categories
Natural Pain Remedies

The Unconventional Guide of Ways to Feel Better

The Unconventional Guide of Ways to Feel Better

In my continuous search of natural pain remedies, I am always on the lookout for ways to feel better.  I am specifically talking about how to feel better in the fight against chronic pain. From which I suffer.  I have found in my research, though, that many of the remedies for pain relief also give a person a better attitude.  So, you get “two for the price of one”. Read on to find out what I have discovered.  

Jay Alexander

Exercise

One of the last things I feel like doing when I am in pain is to exercise.  But it is an unconventional way to feel better. Plus, there is more and more research in this field about how exercise can help you feel better.  Even if it hurts to move. I have pain in my buttock that I compare to sciatic pain. One woman stated that it was a challenge for her to walk because of the pain, but that she would rather be moving and in pain, than sitting and still be in pain.  Especially if she could get outside and enjoy nature.

Read further to find out why.

Endorphins

When we put our body in motion, we start several systems working.  Foremost among these is the release of endorphins. The way I understand this is that exercise releases endorphins into our body, and is transmitted to the brain.  The endorphins act like a pain killer, not unlike morphine, to inhibit the pain signal.  

 

You may have heard of the high that long distance runners experience.  This is similar. But the bottom line is, if you exercise you will feel better.  Not only with less pain, but with a better outlook.  Now why would you not want that?

Neurotransmitters

These chemicals have been linked to mood enhancement.  Exercise increases concentrations of serotonin and norepinephrine.  This leads to an uplifting mood or good mental health. These chemicals also enhance memory retention and learning.  So your outlook will improve along with how your body feels.

Joint Health

Dr. Manuel Gonzalez Reyes

Couch potatoes have a higher risk of joint pain.  Lack of movement means more pain. Moving those joints increases the circulation of the synovial fluid which lubricates the joints.  More lubrication; less pain. In addition exercise moves water away from the joints and brings more oxygen to the joints. Both add to a healthier joint.

Other Benefits

As you are able to increase your exercise you will reap other benefits.  Heart health comes to mind. Exercise strengthens the heart muscles and lowers blood pressure.  

Weight loss is another side benefit to exercise.  As is better sleep. There are also studies that show that women who exercise regularly reduce the risk of breast cancer from 20 – 80%.  

Another benefit seems to be increased energy.  I don’t know why this is; after all you are expending energy to exercise.  But I have had personal experience where I feel more energy after I exercise.  

Start With Just A Little

You may say right now, but I can’t exercise.  I am in too much pain. I have been there. I could not get out of bed without experiencing terrible pain.  I practically had to crawl to the bathroom. But over time, and with learning what works for me, I have come to a point that I can move almost normally.  

I still have chronic pain, but it is manageable now.  So even if you just move from the bed to a chair and do a few stretches, you are on your way to feeling better. This is what my life has come to at this point.  I used to spend hours in the gym.  

But now I have to be happy with ½ hour of stretches and maybe a short walk.  I doubt I will get back to my former workouts, but that’s okay. I am thankful for what I can do.  

What can you do?  Can you push yourself just a little to feel better?  And one more thing about exercising through the pain.  When you focus on anything besides the pain, you feel better.  So focus on the exercise. See if you don’t feel better!

Some Home Remedies To Try

You might have a few of these items in your house already, but didn’t realize they may help in your pain management.  I have researched some of the popular ones for you to try.

Turmeric

This is actually a spice used in Asian cooking.  It contains the chemical curcumin.  There appears to be a connection between curcumin and inflammation reduction.  If your pain is associated with inflammation (osteoarthritis) you may find some relief using this spice.  There are capsule forms also. I have used the spice in warm water as well. Just drink it down. It is not an unpleasant taste.  I have found some relief from this spice. 

There is occasional indication that it can cause stomach upset in some people.  For more information about turmeric see this article from WebMD.  

 

Summer Malik

Willow Bark

As its name suggests, willow bark is taken from the bark of a willow tree. There is research that shows it was used in the time of Hippocrates where it was chewed to relieve pain.  It contains the chemical salicine, which is similar to aspirin. Because of the similarities, there can be similar effects, such as reduction in pain, fever and inflammation and side effects such as stomach upset and blood thinning.  I found another article from WebMD for this information.  

Epsom Salt

Called a salt because of the chemical structure, when dissolved in warm water it dilutes to sulfate and magnesium.  The understanding is that the magnesium is absorbed into the skin, and reduces swelling and inflammation. This has not been proven, but just the activity of soaking in warm water helps to relax muscles and joints, so there is relief pain.  It should not be ingested. More information at WebMD.  

I use Dr. Teal’s with lavender to soak in the evening.  Not only do I gain some muscle relief, but the lavender aromatherapy helps to relax me.  

Bone Broth

Bone broth contains collagen.  As we age, we have less. This collagen protein is essential in joint health.  The collagen is like a cushion that assists the joint to work easier. The collagen is produced by simmering bones to create the broth.  There are other benefits to bone broth including boosting the immune system. Use this link to learn more, and for a bone broth recipe from Dr. Axe.  

Comfrey Extract

This extract has poisonous qualities, so use with care.  There is evidence that rubbing the extract into the lower back can relieve pain.  Another link to WebMD will provide more information.  

Omega 3

I have a complete article on Omega fish oil.  See this link. Although research is inconclusive, I have found some relief.  See my article here.  

Naturopathic medicine

I personally do not have any experience with this as of yet.   But I wanted to include it because I heard a testimonial from a mother of a daughter who had found some miraculous relief from her fibromyalgia.  

I need to spend more time investigating this alternative.  But to hear this story of how the daughter suffered for over a year, and then was helped by this Naturopathic doctor is worth checking out.  If you are in the eastern LA county area, the office she visited was Integrative Natural Health, in Claremont, CA.  Click on their name for a link to their website.  Their website is very informative with background about the philosophy and what to expect.  

I’d especially like to hear back from you if you visit them and tell me about your experience. Or if you have had experience with this alternative option.  

Pets

I read an article that claims that pets may help older adults (that’s me) manage pain.  I can’t afford a pet right now, but I know there is research about how calming it is when you pet a dog or a cat.  I believe being around animals is just good for you period. But if pets can help with managing pain, all the better!  Here’s the link if you want to see the article.  I would love to hear about stories you might have of how your pet helped you.  

 

2allmankind

Sleep

I have a complete article here regarding the benefits of sleep and how to get better sleep.  I recommend you check it out. Sleep gives your body a break from the pain, and repairs broken parts.  If you are like me, you probably push yourself too hard. I recommend you work on getting more sleep. You should notice the benefits immediately.  

Conclusion

I want very much to know if this article was helpful to you.  Any feedback is welcome. If there are improvements I could make to this information, I would like to know about them.  

I am not a doctor and do not claim that any of these remedies are cures.  But I am a pain sufferer. I continue to search for relief for myself and in so doing, hope that something here can provide pain relief for you as well.  

 

Categories
Natural Pain Remedies

Powerful Prayer for Healing.

This post is out of the ordinary for this website, but one that I felt compelled to write.  I actually don’t think there is necessarily a one powerful prayer for healing. But I believe that God answers prayer.  I believe He is the power for healing. So perhaps that title should be, “The Powerful God of Healing”.

Congerdesign

Throughout my Chrisian life I have been challenged to be active in prayer.  I have made prayer lists and prayer cards. A few times I spent an afternoon in prayer and meditation.  This is not to toot my horn, but to establish that I have experience in this topic. Prayer isn’t easy. It is hard work, a battle, if you will.  In fact there is a book called The Fight by John White which is a practical guide to the Christian life with a section about prayer.  I recommend it for those new to the Christian life. Or to those who want to know more about prayer and Christian disciplines.  

Friends and family know that I will pray for them if they desire. I am saying this because I believe it is important for us to pray and I want to show you that I do it because I believe I am commanded to do so. 1 Thessalonians 5:16 tells us to, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing…”  So prayer is an important activity that has been practiced for ages.  Seems to me that gives it some validity.  

But I do it believing in the God that answers prayer.  Which is the basis of powerful prayer for healing.  

Is Prayer a Natural Remedy for Pain?

Everyday I pray for someone who is dealing with pain, illness, emotional or spiritual struggles.  That is what it means to be a Christian and be involved with people. So how does this fit with natural pain remedies?  

Well, it’s natural!  And God answers prayer.  Hence, prayer can be a natural pain remedy.  It benefits the one that is prayed for and it benefits the pray-er.  

Let me get the theology right first of all.  It is not the prayer itself that is powerful, or that “prayer works”.  It is the creator of the universe that answers our prayers as we “ask anything according to His will.” 1 John 5: 14.  What, you may ask, is God’s will? That’s the question! The Westminster Shorter Catechism, made up of 107 questions asks it this way;  Q. What is the chief end of man? A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.  

But you ask, how is that accomplished?  How does God receive glory? My simple explanation is that in all our thoughts and actions, God receives the honor, thanks and worship that he is due.  And if through prayer, God is glorified, then the activity of prayer has fulfilled one of the purposes of man’s existence.  And if a person is healed or relieved of some suffering, then there is more reason to thank God and continue in prayer.  

I am not of the belief that if you pray hard enough and believe hard enough that you will be healed.  There are some that believe that and practice that. But I don’t really trust them. I know too many mature faithful Christians that have pain and suffering in their life.  Even the apostle Paul had a “thorn in the flesh” that wasn’t removed, although he prayed to God for it to be removed. (2 Corinthians 12: 9-10)

But I do believe that we should ask God for healing, and if it is His will, then He receives the glory when that happens.  Prayer puts our focus on God, to view things from another perspective. And as we pray, especially if the person is right there with us, we are adding blessing in their life.  

Some Research About Prayer and Healing

There is research that has been done in the recent past that shows that prayer can have a healing effect on a person.  See this article from WebMD, called Can Prayer Heal?  It has scientific information about prayer and its effects.  Very interesting. 

Also, see this article from USA Today that has some personal stories.  Titled, Does Prayer Have the Power to Heal?  I like that this pastor said praying, talking and comforting were important parts of his ministry.  I would agree.  

However, the NIH weighed in on an article published by Indian Journal of Psychiatry, with the conclusion, “For a multitude of reasons, research on the healing effects of prayer is riddled with assumptions, challenges and contradictions that make the subject a scientific and religious minefield. We believe that the research has led nowhere, and that future research, if any, will forever be constrained by the scientific limitations that we outline”.  If you are interested, see the full report here.  So their conclusion is that we can’t make a definitive statement about prayer and it’s efficacy.  

Taking all those articles into consideration, I have to conclude there isn’t enough data to state outright that prayer brings about healing.  But part of the reason is because it is difficult to make objective measurements of these concepts. At least the sceptics aren’t discounting it.  I intend to fall on the side of faith and practice what God commanded and leave the results up to him.  

Congerdesign

Other Natural Pain Remedies

If you want to research more options of other natural pain remedies, I suggest you look at some of my other articles.  It will take some time and effort on your part to determine what might work for you. I tried most of the options I recommend; some worked, some didn’t.  But that is just me. It is my hope that something might provide relief for you. If you do experience some relief by trying something I recommend, please let me know!  Leave me comments. Other people might benefit from your interaction.  

To get you started here are some links to my other posts.

There are other articles.  Please check them out. I hope that one or two will help you.  

A Personal Challenge

I’m going to challenge myself with this next statement.  If you want me to pray for you, please let me know in the comments.  I try to check my comments daily. I will pray for you. I only ask that you keep me updated as to how you are doing.  I’ll pray as long as you need me to. If I find I can’t keep this up, I will change the post and let you know. But in the long run, it will be a blessing for me.  

This is part of what I believe is the community of pain sufferers.  We need each other in so many ways. And praying for each other is one of them.  

Some Helps

If you desire to have a prayer life and need some help, I would recommend starting by reading a Bible.  If you are not familiar with where to start, I would recommend the Gospel of John. This book of the Bible was written so that the readers would believe in Jesus.  It has an influence from the Old Testament as well.

Need a recommendation for a Bible?  I use two criteria for choosing a Bible.  One is a readable translation. The other is one true to the original languages in which the text was written.  The translations that fulfill those requirements are the English Standard Version (ESV), the New American Standard Version (NASB) and the New International Version (NIV).  You can find ones with leather covers, large print, extensive notes. If you want to get some good theology with your notes I recommend the MacArthur Study Bible 

You might find it helpful to use a Prayer Journal.  Interestingly, there are more journals made for women than for men.  I wonder why? Does anyone have an answer? Most of the journals aren’t anything fancy, just a nice bound book with scripture.  So really, you could just use a spiral notebook. But I do like this one I found that has a format for 52 weeks of prayer, gratitude and goals.  (Which are things I try to practice every morning.) It’s called Prayer Journal: 52 Weeks Prompts to Write In the Morning.

It is also a good idea to pray with someone.  This helps you stay accountable and disciplined.  This is also an important part of pain relief; having someone else share your struggles with.  Giving and receiving empathy is a powerful force for comfort. Praying together is a very intimate activity, and can bond you to a friend.  I highly recommend it.  

Bottom line:  Prayer is work.  It takes discipline.  And like anything that is a challenge you basically just have to get down to it.  Just Do It!

How To Pray?

I am not going to pretend that I know the perfect powerful prayer.  No one has that power. But Jesus gave us an example with the verses in Matthew 6:9-13. It is a great place to start.  Prayer is really talking to God. Just like you would to a friend. Be honest and open with God. Confess your sins. Ask for forgiveness.  Thank God for listening, and for other blessings you have.  

Throughout the day, go back to God with even just a silent prayer.  End your day before sleep with a heart of gratitude for another day that you experienced.  Or if you are still having a hard time, call out in your pain. I have gone to bed in tears some evenings when the pain was too much.  It’s okay to do that.  

Conclusion

I believe prayer is an activity that can lead to healing.  And there are other benefits to prayer such as focusing on God, empathizing with one another and practicing discipline.  But what about you? Do you agree? Disagree? I’d love to hear from you either way.  

Product Disclosure

I am currently not providing any product links as I change my affilitate relationships.  The products I have recommended are ones I have either used or meet my standards for helpfulness.

Categories
Natural Pain Remedies

Can Music Relieve Pain?

Can Music Relieve Pain?

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Introduction

Are you in pain?  I am. I know you don’t really want to live with it.  You want it to stop. You want to live without chronic pain.  But the reality may be that you will have to live with it. I have, for the past several years.  Have you? What have you done to make life liveable? Do you have days that you can barely face the world?  Or even face yourself?

This website was the result of my pain journey.  I have spent hours researching how to deal with chronic pain.  My head was crammed with information. I started to test out some of the advice I was finding.  The posts I have written feature my collected information. I am honest in my evaluation. Some things work.  Some things don’t. I believe different options work for different people.  

As I continue my research, I am always hoping for a new exciting development in the chronic pain field.  So far, I haven’t found it.  

I realize there is more awareness and compassion in the medical field for chronic pain sufferers.  That wasn’t the case years ago. The common philosophy was that a sufferer should respond to what the physician prescribed, and if they didn’t then there was something wrong mentally.  I’m so thankful I have not been treated that way. I hope you haven’t either.  

Here’s what’s current and working for people

I’ve addressed most of these topics on previous posts.  Click on the links to check them out.  Some more in depth than others. Meditation, mindfulness and focus still need more research.  

Music

Today I am writing about Music.  What, you may ask, does music have to do with chronic pain?  Good question. I hope to answer that and more thoughts in this post.  

Research thus far has not been able to define the reason why music can assist in pain management.  The current wisdom is that music affects the brain in ways that can interrupt the pain message that is sent to the brain.  There are some instances where music has helped people with brain damage and mental illness to gain some victory in overcoming their disability.  

Apparently when the brain concentrates on music, the pathways in the brain are busy enough to block out the pain messages, or at least jam them up.  Music involves your hearing, your concentration, your emotions, and probably movement. I like to rock out to 60s tunes while I’m sitting at the stop light.  You know, move my upper body to the beat, snap my fingers. Or sometimes dance around the apartment as if I were a teenager. Check out this article from ScienceNordic titled Music Can Relieve Chronic Pain.

Wind instruments, Brass instruments, Friction membranophone - Soinuenea.jpg

Music Genre

The effect it can have on managing chronic pain has not been researched enough.  But one early study showed that the choice of music made by the sufferer made a difference in the music’s ability to relieve the suffering.  Just the act of picking out the music to listen to, researching the options and music that is available, can be a distraction to the brain to focus it off of suffering.  Furthermore, some types of music relaxes the individual by releasing endorphins that can be natural pain relief hormones. Just like opioids; only naturally!  Here’s another interesting article about this topic.  

You have probably experienced such feelings throughout your life, right?  Stop and think about some piece of music that is a favorite. For example, as a teenager growing up in the 60s in Southern California, Summer in the City, by the Lovin’ Spoonful became a benchmark to draw me back to those hot evenings of my youth.  Everytime I hear that song I am transported back to that feeling of hope, joy, and possibility.  It helped that I was cruising around in a 1967 Camaro, with 4 on the floor. 🙂 Does a song you love have that same power?  

Or think about the music that plays in an acupuncturist office.  I have experienced three different practitioners in my journey of pain.  The one I am using now is the most helpful. See here to read about my search for the right one.  The office plays relaxing quiet music which helps my mind to relax.  I am even able to take a nap! And that’s with needles stuck in me. And I don’t take naps or fall asleep easily.  

Music used with meditation has been shown to relax the listener.  Meditation is another form of natural pain relief. The combination of meditation and music can be a powerful natural remedy against pain.  Involved in this practice is some form of relaxation. I found this article while researching. I don’t actually care for the two music videos it features, but you might like them.  It’s a place to start. Click here: Can Music Relieve Chronic Pain?

Also think about all the music that Disney uses throughout their parks.  The music is happy and upbeat. No wonder it is the happiest place on earth!

Composer Robert Schumann is said, “To send light into the darkness of meant’s hearts – such is the duty of the artist.”  Music brings light into the darkness of our suffering.

The following video was very inspiring and profound.  It got me thinking about how powerful music is.

 

Where to find music?

Wow!  The options are legion as far as apps are concerned.  Check out this link that evaluates the offerings out there.  It is written for Androids, but I believe the same apps are available for IOS.  

I’m using Pandora.  I paid for the basic subscription to avoid the ads.  But if you don’t mind the ads, it’s free. I believe that’s the case for most of the other apps.  I also will use YouTube to search a genre depending on my mood and have that playing while I work on my website.  There are so many choices out there, it is easy to find something for everyone.

The key to music relieving pain is that you are active in your listening.  This fits in with my philosophy of being proactive about your health. What is active listening? From my research I found these characteristics of an active music listener.

  • How does the music make you feel? Evaluate your response to what you are hearing.  Do you feel different feelings while the music plays?
  • What instruments do you hear? Try to name them.
  • What’s the melody?  
  • What are the lyrics?
  • If the music is classical, research why the composer wrote it.  It will add to your experience.
  • Does it make you want to move?  Cry? Sing along?  

This type of activity requires your full attention. This in itself will divert your mind from the pain.  But then you gain other benefits too. Your focus has shifted from your pain to an engaging activity. The type of music will change your mood.  For instance, classical helps me think and inspires me. My 60s music makes me happy and I have to get up and dance and sing.  

Here’s a place to start.  Look at what they claim!  “The Most Relaxing Classical Music in the Universe“.  I don’t have a link right now, so I suggest you search it to find the best deal.

Conclusion

What about you?  I’m sure you have your favorites.  I want very much to hear about them, and why they are your choices.  Your comments will help others, opening each of us to new ideas. And hopefully to less pain.  How has music helped you with your pain?  Or with other issues in your life?  Join this community to help others.  

 

Categories
Natural Pain Remedies

What’s Trending in Natural Back Pain Relief Products?

Oh my goodness!  So excited!  Today I researched the topic, “What’s trending in Natural Pain Relief”?  What a wealth of information.

Andrea Linja

From my previous posts you will know that I promote self care and responsibility in your search to feel better.  And I still believe that.  Some of these products help you in that endeavor.  This post could be part of previous posts where I mention other products.  But I didn’t know about these items until today.  They support my philosophy of movement and mindfulness.

I found several of them on this site: 41 Health Wellness Products trending on Amazon.  I recommend you check the site out.  There are so many exciting products, I can hardly stand it!  I am going to mention a few here though, and why I am doing so.  If you want to purchase ones that I recommend, please use my links.  I receive a small portion of the cost.

Body Back Buddy, Jr.  This item looks like a crazy utensil, but what a great idea!  Massage is a great way to find relief for muscle and nerve pain.  I get a mini massage from my acupuncturist weekly.  Best part of the treatment!  Anyway, it think this product would be helpful to any part of your body.  I’m thinking of giving it as a gift to my loved ones.

Body Back Buddy, Jr.

Prosource Fit Acupressure Mat and Pillow Set for Back/Neck Pain Relief and Muscle Relaxation is a wonderful idea.  It combines a mat with acupressure “needles” (small circles with pointed ends).  These needles stimulate the body to release endorphins and relax muscles.  I use a similar product in my sneakers.  The pressure points do take some getting used to, but I believe the stimulation of the pressure points will outweigh the drawback.  Please note this mat is only long enough to cover your back and possibly your buttocks.  It is not a full length mat like ones you use to exercise.  It comes with a pillow to use for neck pain. 

 

Prosource Acupressure Mat

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s an interesting invention: Berlin & Daughter – Posture Corrector.  It appears that they recommend it only for females.  Not sure why.  But I have written about how important good posture is for back pain.  My acupuncturist explained that sitting up straight with a spine stretched out is one of the best things you can do for lower back pain.  Another site recommended sitting like a line that was attached to the ceiling was pulling your spine straight.  It is so easy to get lazy and slouch.  This band looks like it would help with poor posture.

Berlin and Daughter – Posture Corrector

This Coisum Orthopedic Memory Foam Pillow looks like a great find.  While it doesn’t address the back, which most of my posts include, I do have neck pain occasionally.  And spinal care is important for all parts of our body.  I noted that one reviewer said it was “the best pillow ever purchased”. I’m so thankful for options like these to help us sleep better.  Speaking of sleep, check out my article about sleep here

Coisum Orthopedic Memory Foam Pillow
Autoimmune Tea Anti-Inflammatory Tea

Finally, here’s a recommendation for fighting inflammation.  The more I read, the more I understand that inflammation in the body results in pain and other issues like disease.  I know that an anti-inflammatory diet can really address that.  Foods like fish, berries, and avocado are rich in anti-inflammatory vitamins.  See this link for 13 of the best foods to fight inflammation.  And here’s a product that will add to your arsenal to fight inflammation and start feeling better.  It’s called Autoimmune Tea Anti Inflammatory Tea.  It has an Amazon’s Choice banner and 4.3 stars.  Sounds like a good investment.

Further Thoughts

I trust you are reading this post because you are in pain.  So am I.  Daily.  And as I said in a recent post, some times it is a challenge to just get out of bed.  But remember, you are responsible for how you manage your pain and how it affects you.  No one else is!  Lately, I have been purposeful in my waking up.  Sounds sort of weird huh?  But don’t you think that your first thoughts in the morning can affect your entire day?  I’m starting mine with 3 things; (learned from Tony Robbins) Gratitude, Prayer and Intentions.  I then include my Bible reading.  Or you could include a positive, inspirational reading.  Why not transform your mind with positive thoughts instead of negative?

Don’t think you can?  I researched why people can’t get motivated.  One writer concludes that you aren’t moving forward because you just aren’t ready.  She discusses four areas in our life that impact our ability to move forward; physical, emotional, financial and mental.  Check out her article here.  This article was helpful to me because I have been fighting to be motivated.  I now realize that my physical status is greatly affecting my mental strength.  This tells me I need more positive reasons and input to fight the pain and the discouragement.  Negative thoughts seem to reside in my mind much more than positive ones.  Argh!  One writer said to focus on just one goal.  And that might work for some.  But after I accomplish that one goal; i.e. getting out of bed, I have several other ones to accomplish.  Taking a shower and doing my yoga are both challenges for me.  Because of pain, I don’t want to do either one.  But then I transform my thinking.  I know I will feel better once I shower.  Being clean is invigorating.  The warm water lossens up my muscles and joints.  I think I look better.  When you look better you feel better.  Then comes the stretching.  I know I will feel less pain once my yoga stretches are done.  And the payoff starts as soon as I begin.  Yeah, once I am finished with may routinue I feel stronger, and have less pain.  But even during the activity I begin to feel better.  I hope you can get moving in a direction that is positive and that will help you feel better in your search for natural pain relief.  May just start with one thing.  See how it goes.

So What Do You Think?

I would love to hear comments from you about what products or practices you have tried.  Your input can help me to help others as well.  I’ve said before that we need a community of fellow pain sufferers to encourage and support each other.  Hopefully this website is part of that community.  Please consider being a part of it too by comments and questions.  Let me know what you think is trending in natural pain products