How Are You Presently Coping With Your Pain?

If you have a chronic illness or disability, you've most likely journeyed through the medical system for years. If your condition causes you physical pain that has not responded well to medical treatment, you're probably dealing with constant emotional suffering as well. There are several stages we go through on our journey.  The first stage consists of int...

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The TWO Components of Chronic Pain

Before we even attempt to overcome our chronic pain, it’s a good idea to understand exactly what pain is. Most of us think of pain only in regard to the physical sensations happening in our body. But pain is so much more than that! So let’s start with the definition of pain:  "An unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential...

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PAIN BYTE #6: Resetting the Nervous System

Pain is meant to be an alarm system – not a disease process. Learning to self-soothe and calm your nervous system is one of the most important tasks required to shift pain back to a warning signal. How do we shrink those pain maps? We don’t need to be a brain scientist! We have access to the brain - we can create and effect changes in our brains and our live...

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PAIN BYTE #5: The Map in Your Brain

Just like a physical map, or the map on your phone, your brain also contains a map.  So what is a map actually? A simple definition is that a map is a a diagrammatic representation of an area. It's a symbolic interpretation of a place and highlights the relationships between elements in space, either perceived or actual. Every part of the body is reflected i...

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PAIN BYTE #4: Alarm System Malfunction

Your pain system – like an alarm system can start to malfunction. Over time, pain and other biological factors change the central nervous system’s perception and signaling.  As pain continues or becomes chronic, the alarm system changes and becomes more sensitive. The pain sensing nerves send the same signals as if there was a threat of injury or damage when...

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PAIN BYTE #3: Spinal Cord Switchboard

We touched on the Gate Control Theory in the last post. The spinal cord and the brain have the ability to act like a "gate" and control the flow of information that is received or sent from it. Your body has millions of these sensors that are constantly sending messages to your brain about the current state of your body. Some sensors or nociceptors, respond ...

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PAIN BYTE #2: No Brain, No Pain

Our old understanding of pain, was that it originated within the tissues of our body, such as a physical reaction to an injury. We believed that pain receptors sent a one-way signal to the brain's pain center. The intensity of pain experienced was thought to be in direct proportion to tissue damage. Kind of  like a pain-meter. We assumed the more damage, the...

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PAIN BYTES #1: Pain is Not the Enemy

The English word ‘Pain’ has its roots in the Latin poena meaning ‘punishment, penalty or retribution’. It's no surprise then, that when we think about pain, we think of it as a negative experience - Pain as ENEMY. The pain is killing me. I'm fighting this pain. This pain is stabbing, burning, shooting... Anti-inflammatories Pain killers But this view of pain...

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My Favorite Anti-Inflammatory Golden Milk + How to Make It

If you haven’t tried turmeric or “golden” milk, then you’re in for a treat! It tastes similar to a chai latte because it contains many of the same spices. I started making this several years ago and now it’s my favorite winter beverage. Golden milk is one of the easiest ways to reap the many health benefits of turmeric. Turmeric has been used in a healing sp...

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The Personal Experience of Chronic Pain

Pain is more than a sensation. It’s an experience. It’s an experience that no one else can see or feel. It is an experience that affects our identity, our reality, the perception of our body and how we live in the world. So why is the pain experience so different for everyone? Because pain involves a complex interaction between your nervous system and your b...

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Thanksgiving, Gratitude and Chronic Pain

Thanksgiving, Gratitude and Chronic Pain  "Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson When we are struggling with chronic pain it’s not always easy to feel gr...

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You Know You Are a Chronic Pain Sufferer When...

You Know You Are a Chronic Pain Sufferer When… Your pain has changed your personality and you:     Get stressed very easily.     Have a hard time focusing on tasks.     Find it hard to get started or to finish tasks on time.     Often lose your temper     Doubt yourself.     Have no patience.     Plan your day around your level of pain.     Are hypersensitiv...

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Drinking Water

Drinking enough water is often overlooked as a pain management strategy, as well as having a huge impact on your overall health. Did you know that your body is made up of between 60-70% water? Simply put, water affects every organ and cell within your body. Water makes up 90% of blood, 75% of lean muscle tissue, 74% of the brain and 22% of your bones. Every ...

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