Develop Your Pain Management List For Really Bad Days

Chronic Pain Toolbox

May 18, 2016

We have made several references in our newsletters and NEST posts to the idea of having a chronic pain toolbox and recently we were asked to expand on this idea by explaining what exactly we mean when we refer to a chronic pain management toolbox.

To begin creating your toolbox, develop a list for really bad days of things that make your life a little better. This wonderful brainstorming exercise can even be done when your illness is getting you down and you’re trying to distract yourself.

Your first tool could easily be to make a list of things that make you happy. Creating a happy list on rough days reminds yourself not every day is as overwhelming as the current one.

Distraction from overwhelming pain is a great tool.

We discussed the benefits of a movie or Netflix binge for pain management recently, but there are other tools too. Picking up a novel, guidebook, comic book, magazine are wonderful ways to distract our minds from pain.

Cloud watching is a childhood activity you can bring back as a great distraction as well. Let your mind wander on ‘What do different clouds look like?’ Or you could simply let your mind and pain float away as the clouds go by.    

Staying active is a serious challenge for people, but especially so for people who are battling the symptoms of a debilitating illness.

Mindfulness, yoga, pilates, and walking are some examples of tools people employ to manage their illnesses.

Many people are turning to mindfulness as a preferred pain management tool. Once this tool is learned it can be practiced in the home daily for a few minutes or much longer as a coping mechanism.

Recognizing this technique is a valuable tool, Toronto long term care hospital Bridgepoint Health offers a mindfulness course to chronic pain patients and is taught by a doctor.

Athletes employ mindfulness to improve their performance and the most notable practitioner is Michael Jordan. Athletes can meditate their way to what they refer to as being in the zone.

“I tell them that if they try to get in the zone, they can’t. But if they pay attention, the zone will happen as a by-product. There are other elements involved, but that is the main part. It’s about the ability to be both relaxed and alert.” From The Lakers Meditate? Mindful.org

To get you started on developing your chronic pain toolbox, Living with Fibromyalgia has a wonderful post on the subject. The author has developed their own list of tools they use and many chronic pain bloggers have their own post on tools they employ.

Tweet us items on your chronic pain list and use #peacenaturals to share them with the Peace community.

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