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13 SUGGESTIONS ON HOW TO KEEP YOUR PAIN AT BAY…

13 suggestions on how to keep your pain at bay.

  1. Exercise
  2. Good Nutrition
  3. Lots of Sleep
  4. Pacing
  5. Prioritizing
  6. Patience
  7. Planning
  8. Practice
  9. Acceptance
  10. Progress
  11. Support network
  12. Medication
  13. Get a Hobby
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ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT AROMATHERAPY OILS FOR PAIN…

Eucalyptus oil, it’s not just a beautiful tree and leaf but also great as oil to ease pain, thanks to its anti-inflammatory benefits. It can help sore muscles from pain caused by arthritis or Fibromyalgia. Mix one or two drops with either coconut, argan or jojoba oil, then rub in the sore area in a circular motion. You can also blend with peppermint and rosemary oil to create a feel-good muscle rub. Lots of other oils also work well for pain relief.

Lavender is the most famous essential oil for pain relief and relaxation is lavender. It’s also good for your cardiovascular and digestive systems, lowers blood pressure, and helps relieve insomnia.

For relaxation try vanilla. Place a few drops of vanilla extract onto a handkerchief and carry it with you throughout the day. It helps fight infections, reduces inflammation, helps respiratory problems, and can work as an antioxidant.

To help you recharge try peppermint, jasmine, citrus. These scents make you feel more awake. Apparently, even though these scents are pleasant, they act as mild irritants and the effect is similar to that of smelling salts.

Sprinkle a few drops of the essential oil of your choice in a candle diffuser, or dilute two drops in 1 tsp. of avocado or almond oil, then rub it onto the back of your hand.

For pain relief try Green apple. The smell of green apples can reduce the severity and duration of migraine headaches and may have a similar effect on joint pain.

Another way for pain relief is to eat a green apple for a snack or bathe with green apple bath salts.

My love of essential oils goes back about 20+ years. The hospital where I had my first spinal surgeries had a lady that came into the hospital on a weekly basis and gave patients aromatherapy massage if they wished to have it.

She was a quiet small lady whose aura gave a feeling of calm before she even gave you the aromatherapy massage. She would mix the oils at the time you arrived by first finding out what sort of pain you were in. If I go somewhere that sells or uses these oils it takes me straight back to my regular session with my aromatherapist.

Unfortunately, like all of us, she eventually retired and although I still have the odd aromatherapy massage I have yet to have a treatment that reacted in quite the same way.

Sometimes I will use an aromatherapy diffuser scent ring, to fill the room with my favourite oils. Lavender (which also reminds me of my Grandma as she always wore it) mixed with rosemary oil is top of my list.

Storing your oils is important for their lifespan. Try to store your oils in a dark amber glass bottle, this will store it better. If they are stored in a clear or plastic bottle they will deteriorate in about 8 weeks.

Always store away from direct sunlight, in a cool and dark place is best. If stored correctly they could last up to one year.

To make your oils go further, add five to 10% of wheat-germ oil, as it helps to preserve the mixture.

Before you massage ALWAYS do a patch test first to check you are not allergic to it.

Always wash your hands when you have finished the massage.

Many Fibromyalgia forums have written comments on this oil with some having great results and others no so great, but that can be the same with drugs or treatments as it seems pains affect people differently.

Written by the experts, Neals Yard Remedies: Complete Massage – All the techniques, Disciplines & Skills You Need to Massage for Wellness. The book will bring the rejuvenating aromatherapy benefits into your life.

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STEROID INJECTIONS AND HOW THEY COULD AFFECT YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM…

Your immune system is a very important part of your health especially during this Covid-19 Pandemic. At this time of year many of us are having our flu vaccines but it can take up to 14 days for the immune system to mount an immune response so your are not immune to the flu the minute you have the injection.

They talk about supplements in the winter to improve your immune system as while a healthy diet containing an abundance of nutrients can help fend off illness, there is also a number of supplements that will boost your immunity and keep you fit. These include Vitamin C, and D, Zinc, Pelargonium (herbal remedy for bronchitis, Echinacea, Elderberry, Black Garlic, Iron and Omega 3’s but none of these should be taken until you have checked with your GP first.

But, what about our immune system and Covid-19? Well, according to the British Nutrition Foundation and written in Woman & Home, there is no individual food or supplement that will stop us contracting highly infectious viruses such as Covid-19, but it is important to make sure you are getting enough vitamins and minerals to support your immune system. The NHS recommends taking vitamin D supplements if you are self-isolating or spending the majority of your time indoors.

And, what about steroid injections and the immune system? Well, as some of my readers will have read I have been suffering lately with awful low back and hip pain and after an MRI showed arthritis in my sacroiliac joints as well as in multi levels of my low back I was offered a steroid injection to help with the pain.

Before signing the consent form I was briefly informed that having this injection could ‘suppress my immune system’. On the site Ultrasound Guided Injections, which is what I had states that ‘since the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, we are making patients aware of the specific implications to be considered in relation to corticosteroid injections and COVID-19’.

It goes on to explain in full about why you should really think about having a steroid injection or not.

Corticosteroids are an immuno-suppressant (they inhibit our immune system) which is one of the main ways in which they work and are clinically useful – they are powerful anti-inflammatory medication (they reduce inflammation and swelling) and therefore pain. However this means corticosteroids will also have a inhibitory impact on our general immune system and our ability to fight infections.

The immuno-suppressant effect to believed to last up to several weeks after the injection although this is believed to vary from person to person (Hackett et al 2020).  Although there is a lack of clear evidence to act as guidance on this matter in terms of the exact size of increase in risk there might be.

It is important that any patients considering a corticosteroid injection are aware of the fact that corticosteroids could theoretically i) increase the likelihood of contracting COVID-19 due to its immuno-suppressant effect ii) inhibit their body’s ability to fight the COVID-19 virus if contracted and iii) could potentially make the patients more contagious to people around them, following a corticosteroid injection. One study published in 2018 showed patients who had received a corticosteroid injection were more likely to develop seasonal flu. Because the size of risk is unknown it is recommended that patients and clinicians should reach a shared decision (Morgan and Dattani 2020)  on a case by case basis weighing up the risks and benefits of proceeding with steroid injection treatment (Amani et al 2020)

Now had I read this or realised this I probably would not have had the injection until Covid-19 is out of the way but I didn’t really understand this much about it until I came home and looked on the internet. I actually have another one booked into the other sacroiliac joint next week but I have already decided to cancel this injection. It’s actually not totally because of what I have read about but also because I don’t feel it’s been as successful as I had hoped and so why have another one unless it works for your problem.

I do take a few supplements and I am on a very high dose of Vitamin D for my Osteopenia but with this disease spreading so quickly throughout the world at the moment you would think that any treatments that suppress your immune system should not be used at the moment unless its a medical emergency.

I think if you follow these 8 steps from Web MD it will definitely help to keep your immune system up to scratch.

  1. Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
  2. Get at least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week.
  3. Get enough sleep.
  4. Wash your hands.
  5. Keep up with your vaccinations. Almost everyone who’s at least 6 months old should get a flu vaccine every year.
  6. Keep your weight healthy.
  7. Don’t drink too much alcohol.
  8. Don’t smoke.