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Living with chronic illness can make every day feel like a long, arduous battle that you’re probably not going to win. It might feel overwhelming when you’re in a lot of pain, particularly on your bad days. But there are small things you can make things better for yourself. Read on to see some ideas on how you can slowly change your life for the better and get through each day one step at a time.
Celebrate Small Achievements
On days when you’re really suffering, it’s easy to feel like a massive failure and resort to just staying in bed feeling sorry for yourself. That’s okay, but if you do manage to do anything, be it something as simple as getting up to make yourself a snack or updating your social media, celebrate your achievement. It might not feel like much, but when you consider how much pain you’re in, it took a lot of strength just to get through the day, and you should be proud about that.
Visit a Chiropractor
When you’re in pain, you don’t always want to have someone touch and move you around, but a skilled chiropractor can help with long-term pain management. De La Cruz Chiropractic is an example of a practice with many experienced chiropractors. Their team can help to treat and reduce your pain, and also teach you exercises and habits that will help you to manage it properly. Find out more about them at delacruzchiropractic.net, to see what they can do to help get you started towards feeling better.
Note that certain patients such as those with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome and Antiphospholipid Syndrome might not be suitable candidates, due to the nature of their illness. Do check with your doctor before you begin treatment.
Deep Breathing to Survive Through a Pain Flare
During moments when pain is severe, it can feel like the end of the world and that nothing is going to help. Sometimes such pain flares happen suddenly whilst you’re out, and you’re unable to rest or get to a safe space. It is not easy, but deep breathing exercises have a calming effect on the brain, and might help to tide you through such episodes. Keep breathing, until you can get yourself into an environment with your usual supportive resources, and where you can recover with more ease.
Stick to a Healthy Diet
What we put into our bodies and what it absorbs is important. Diets that contain anti-inflammatory foods such as vegetables, fruits, fatty fish and nuts can help to ease chronic pain over time. Diets that contain a lot of processed foods, sugar, trans fat and the like can on the other hand, trigger more pain in your body.
We are all also different individuals with different triggers, even if we live with the same chronic illness. For example, caffeine might trigger headaches in one person, but not another. It’s okay to enjoy your favourite treat once in a while if it doesn’t cause too much pain (only you would know!), but try to get the balance right on an every day basis.
Surround Yourself With Supportive People
Many people with chronic illness often feel isolated and lonely, as they need to stay home due to pain or hypersensitivity. There are friends and family who understand and are compassionate, and then there are the toxic ones who make you feel guilty for not being able to show up.
If you find that certain people in your life are being negative and uncaring, it might be a good idea to get rid of them as it can be detrimental to your wellbeing over time. You have enough to deal with, and do not need the extra judgement, drama and pain it causes. Try to find people – either in real life or online – who are supportive and empathetic. Believe me when I say that you’re not alone in your struggle. As humans we are social creatures, so find and build your own tribe; it will make a huge difference in your life.
Don’t be Ashamed To Take Painkillers
There is a lot of stigma surrounding painkillers out there, but that’s what they’re exactly for – to ease pain, especially when it’s chronic and your quality of life is taking a huge blow because of it. It did take me a long time to finally view and use them as tools, and that it does not mean that I am weak.
There are a few different kinds of pain medications out there and some do have an addictive nature. Find a good doctor who understands your pain, and who will help guide you through this process of finding a suitable medication to regain some quality of life.
I hope that these small tips are helpful for your own pain management plan, and improves your life a little. Good luck, and don’t hesitate to reach out in the comments section if you have any thoughts!
This list is just a rough guide, and nothing in this review should be taken as medical advice. Always be sure to check with your doctor before you start on any new treatment or protocol.
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