Pain and discomfort for most people are constant life companions. We obtain diseases or experience an injury. We age, overuse our body, don’t take care of our body. As a result, pain can interfere with daily life. It can be sharp and immediate, called acute pain, or more long-term, called chronic. In any case, pain demands us to manage it in some way so as to minimize its negative impact.
Ask yourself this question about pain: Do I take actions that control my pain or do some of my habits and routines actually increase my pain level?
Whether your pain is acute or chronic, there are surefire ways to increase your pain, thereby working absolutely contrary to the desired effect of reducing pain and increasing healing. This article takes a different approach to managing your pain. It offers ten tried-and-true ways to stay miserable with pain.
1. Push It! Push It! Push It!
We often don’t know how to listen to our body — we go beyond what we should do. Let’s say you have a list of things you need to get done, but as the day wears on you feel tired, and that ache or strain here and there in your body starts putting out stronger signals of PAIN and DISCOMFORT! Instead of listening to your body, your mind says: “Keep going — Finish!” Athletes know this syndrome well. However, even our recreational or domestic activities fall prey to overdoing it, such as gardening, housecleaning, home improvement, various sports, walking or exercising beyond the limits of an injury, and the like.
By not listening to our body, especially as we age or if we are already injured, we often go beyond what we should do. Pain and discomfort increase when we don’t pace ourselves by pausing now and then, relaxing, catching our breath and slowing down. Pushing past our physical limitations and injuries can increase pain. If pain is what you want, go ahead and push your body (and injury) beyond its means!
2. Say NO! to Exercise
If you are like most people, you don’t exercise enough. We can all relate to this attitude: “When I feel like exercising, I just lie down until the feeling goes away” (Robert Maynard Hutchins). However, not exercising is a surefire way of locking into a cycle of deconditioning – weakness/atrophy – pain. Our bodies were designed to regularly move, flex, stretch and be used, not to “couch-potato-it.”
When we hurt somewhere or have an injury in a particular location, we often believe that we need to immobilize our whole body. This can actually do more harm than good. Exercise, within reason, after an injury, can actually ease or decrease chronic pain. Regular, gentle movements keep muscles toned, joints limber, and help you build strength and flexibility. Exercise also re-oxygenates blood, stimulates scar tissue development in muscles, ligaments and tendons, and increases necessary synovial fluid in joints.
So, if you are intent on increasing pain in your body, go ahead: sit and watch the world go by and feel your body implode from underuse!
3. Say NO! to Rest or Relaxation
Good wholesome activity — the kind that makes it feel good to be human! — needs to be balanced with rest and relaxation. Your body (or injury) needs rest, and so does your mind, emotions and sense of spirit. The key word is Regeneration.
Whether you are fit or recovering from an injury, you simply cannot sustain a certain level of intensity or activity without the risk of falling into a cycle of fatigue – pain – more fatigue – more pain. Without periods of rest and relaxation, your body rebels and sends you pain signals. If that is what you want — good old healthy doses of pain — then forget resting!
4. Forget about a Good Night’s Sleep!
A good night’s sleep is golden for regenerating our body, mind, and sense of spirit. However, an injury, medical condition, stress or depression can alter the sleep process. This in turn can interact with issues of pain and ultimately recovery. Sleep allows the body to engage in unobstructed healing and diminishes our awareness of pain. It’s as simple as that!
People with arthritic conditions, or even injuries such as sprains, bursitis, broken bones, and the like often suffer from sleep conditions. It can be uncomfortable lying in certain positions, or the mattress may not give comfortable support. However, fitful sleep is necessary for healing. The less sleep you get, the better chance pain has to disrupt your life. So, if you want more pain, forget the regenerating power of sleep!
5. Pile on the Weight
The issues surrounding being overweight or obese are constantly in the public limelight, and rightfully so! Four of the top 7 health issues faced in the U.S. today directly relate to weight. The fact is: Weight gain equals more pain!
Bodily pain from being overweight is especially felt in the joints. The knees are most vulnerable, especially because the joints here are the least-designed in the body. They have fairly limited range of motion and are prone to athlete injury, arthritis, as well as demands of weight. Pain loves to inhabit the knees.
Consider this: For every pound a person is overweight, three to five pounds of extra weight is added to each knee during walking. The force is even greater when running, going down stairs, or other stop-and-start activities. In contrast, a ten pound weight loss causes 30 to 50 pounds of extra stress to be relieved from the knee joints.
The point is: If you want more pain in your life, pile on the weight!
6. Don’t Protect Your Joints
The role of joints in the body is not fully appreciated. How do you really think you can move about — your shoulders, knees, fingers, wrists, elbows, hips, ankles and the like — without the flexibility of those joints that allow the bones, with the aid of tendons and ligaments, to have a certain range of motion? Our joints are often the first places to wear down as we age, resulting in arthritic conditions.
You need to love and protect your joints, period! Keep within a healthy weight range, exercise and stay fit, eat nutritionally well. If necessary, use assistive devices or supports. Practice better body mechanics (using larger joints rather than smaller ones, when possible), better posture, and rest your joints.
By not engaging in basic joint protection, you risk damaged joints and increased pain. Is that what you want? If so, then forget your joints even exist — that should give you plenty of pain to chew on!
7. Become a Stress Basket-case
The activities, demands and worries of daily life today are major indicators of stress. Stress not only affects our state of mind and spirit, but also our immune system. Stress makes us vulnerable to disease and illness. It also wrecks havoc on injuries or conditions (arthritis, for one) where chronic pain is present.
Too much stress can increase pain. There is an interconnection between our body’s immune function — its ability to rally forces to heal an injury or disease — stress and pain. Stress and pain create an all too familiar cycle: Stress – pain – more stress – more pain.
In your attempts to heal an injury or disease, you have to limit stress-factors in your life: those activities, experiences, situations, worries and demands that seem to have more control over you than you might desire. Oftentimes it is extremely tough to say NO! to stressful situations. However, if you are definitely committed to sustaining pain in your injury, by all means welcome a cornucopia of stress into your life!
8. Become a Pessimist — Have No Faith
Most people do not believe that there is a body-mind connection between injury, disease and healing. This psychosomatic relationship, however, is important in understanding the healing process. For those people who suffer from chronic pain, as a result of injury or disease, they know how life-altering pain is.
Pain can feed doubt and pessimism. When medications, treatments, moderated exercise and other positive interventions don’t seem to help, pain can feed pessimism — the mindset of hopelessness, feeling down or depressed. Feeling down because of pain associated with an injury is natural to a point. But by giving into a depressing mindset, you are less likely to maintain your healing regimen or to focus on optimism. Such actions can actually result in increased pain, whether real or perceived.
Additionally, by not investing in a faith in healing, pain is likely to become a constant companion. Your spirit can be bolstered by your faith tradition, if you have one, and/or activities such as positive affirmation, prayer, supportive fellowship, journaling, resting in nature, and the like. Otherwise, if you are a pain-junkie, forget hope and optimism; your pessimism should give you a healthy fix of pain.
9. Skip Any Medical Interventions
The cost of health care frightens most people into taking care of themselves when injury arises. Personal resourcefulness about health and injury is actually a large part of the self-care equation. However, when medical or alternative medical intervention is sought, the advice and directions of the provider or consultant should be respected. After all, their purpose is to relieve the pain and discomfort of your injury or disease while overseeing any possible healing strategies.
If you have medications or herbal interventions, specific directions for administration should be followed. If you are guided toward strategies of rehabilitation and convalescence, any directions should be properly followed. Any programs and processes for self-care — exercise, stretching, diet, stress reduction, etc. — should be followed and maintained. All these interventions are for your benefit.
By skipping various forms and strategies of treatment for your injury, you are effectively accepting some degree of pain as the consequence. If pain is what you want, sure, go ahead and throw any interventions out the window!
10. Go for the Quack Cures
The healthcare system has a lot of room for quackcare. Chronic pain lends itself to an infinite variety of potential remedies and interventions. The problem is that worthless treatments may also lead to more pain.
Let’s face it, pain is distressing and our desire is to halt the agony! However, unproven interventions may diminish the time, money and effort better given to proven and acceptable treatments. The staggering costs of Western medical intervention (a system only a few hundred years old) often leads one to reconsider the use, or to question the risks or actual success. Alternative interventions (herbal, homeopathic, naturopathic, chiropractic, massage, bodywork, tinctures,flower essences, acupuncture, yoga, meditation, biofeedback, Reiki, and many more) have proven methodologies often dating back thousands of years. Add to this mix, a wide assortment of remedies, gimmicks and the like, and the ability to make sense of it all can be overwhelming.
It is important to be as informed as possible about any intervention being reviewed. Get multiple opinions, read several sources on the Internet, obtain or review feedback from other users. Value a sound educational component — a product or service that is being sold at the expense of good educational information that backs its effectiveness should be looked at warily. Alongside sound reason, use your intuition: If you have any doubt or unanswered questions, back off and rethink; ask yourself: “Does this feel right?”
Above all don’t fool yourself into miracle cures or magic bullets. If something sounds too good to be true, if the price sounds like the deal of the century, if you are encouraged to buy large amounts of something for special pricing, if you are being asked to become part of a multi-level marketing enterprise — you owe it to yourself to pull back and rethink. Otherwise, you may feel your pain twice: in your body and your pocketbook! Now, if that works for you (i.e. more pain!), then forget every word I said!
There you have it — ten surefire ways to increase pain in your injury at the expense of its healing. When all is said and done, we need to remember the miracle of creation that is our body. By becoming intimate with the signals it gives us, we can learn a lot about the effectiveness of intervention for injuries. We can also learn how to read pain. Pain can be an amazing teacher, not always bad, as it helps signal for us the extent of injury and, as it diminishes, the extent of healing. Understand your pain and you can better understand your healing.
If you would like to know about how Solomon’s Seal and our line of tinctures that can assist in your injury recovery and/or pain relief, please read more articles in this blog and visit our website: http://www.solomonsseal.net.