• Quote of the Day
    "You are much deeper, much broader, much brighter than any idea you could have of yourself."
    Harry Palmer, posted by Daniel

SS8282

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I've been away for a few weeks, and I've been having a hard time during those weeks. I've also been thinking too.

Besides having various mental illnesses (a long list), I also have medical ones too. I have asthma, glaucoma, back problems (since a bad car accident 10 yrs ago), and various allergic reactions, as well as the usual allergies and sinus problems. I'm on celexa, seroquel, risperdal, and 2 kinds of eye drops for my eyes, and most resent - atarax for allergies. Because of the meds, I've been so tired and sleepy. I tried to skip some of them, but I get really cranky, irritable, and bad thoughts keep floating around in my head.

Diabetes and thyrod problems run in my family too. Not sure if I have them because I haven't had a physical in a few years - just can't seem to get the energy to have one done.

From what I know, there are no cures for my medical/physical problems. How can I deall with all this? Deal with both physical and mental problems? Like I said, bad thoughts are swimming around in my head, and the urge is there too. Not sure how much longer I can keep on fighting.

Sorry for babbling. Just had to get all this out.
 

David Baxter

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Diabetes and thyrod problems run in my family too. Not sure if I have them because I haven't had a physical in a few years - just can't seem to get the energy to have one done.
I assume you see your doctor for prescription renewals and medication monitoring. You can check for thyroid and diabetes issues with simple blood tests, maybe even while you're there. With your family history, it is vital that you check those out.

From what I know, there are no cures for my medical/physical problems. How can I deall with all this? Deal with both physical and mental problems?
I've forgotten if you mentioned this: Are you currently seeing a counselor or therapist?
 

Daniel

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]How can I deall with all this? Deal with both physical and mental problems?

One of my obsessions used to be chronic pain. I read a lot about chronic pain sufferers. In a nutshell, it seems that anxiety and other demoralizing states of mind play havoc on the ability to cope with physical pain. So I would try as many relaxation therapies as you can. My favorite relaxation therapies are TV, reading, music, exercising, long hot showers, and occasionally meditating. Also, as Dr. Baxter points out, I would see a therapist if you are not seeing one currently.

Regarding back pain, my mother had chronic low back pain, and she benefited from an epidural steroid injection.
 

SS8282

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Oh my - I knew I was tired when I posted (my body is still dealing with the various time zone changes) but I didn't realize until now how many typos I made. Anyway...

I see a shrink (and get my psych meds from him) once a month, but I don't talk to him about dealing with physical problems. There's always other stuff to talk about that's current, and my sessions are only 45min. long. Actually, I'm seeing him later on this week.

I see my family doctor once in a while, when something happens. The thought of making an appointment, getting myself all 'checked out', going somewhere else for blood tests, waiting for a week or so, and then going back to the doc for the results, is a bit overwhelming. Plus, I don't want to hear it if I do happen to have either or both diabetes and thyroid problems.

Epidural steroid injection? Ouch! My back hurts usually during and after exercising, including long walks. Isn't there something else besides needles?

Oh, not sure if it makes too much difference, but my asthma is brittle asthma, not the 'regular' type, which means it's a bit like a time bomb, I really have to watch it when it starts to act up and it's difficult to calm it down. Then again, sometimes, I just wish it'll do it's job and 'blow up'.
 

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Epidural steroid injection? Ouch! My back hurts usually during and after exercising, including long walks. Isn't there something else besides needles?

Other than over-the-counter pain killers like Tylenol and Advil, I know there is hot & cold therapy. One cold therapy product I liked using for mild back pain is Biofreeze, but you can find other menthol-based cold therapy creams/gels/patches in your local pharmacy, such as the Icy Hot Back Patch. There are other muscle pain creams for backache as well. Since walking is usually good for stretching the back muscles, I don't know if stretching or abdominal exercises would be helpful or harmful for your cause of back pain.
 

David Baxter

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I don't want to hear it if I do happen to have either or both diabetes and thyroid problems.
There may be fairly simple "cures" if either is a factor, though... why would you not want to know what it is you're dealing with?

Ignorance isn't really bliss, usually... it just means you're unarmed.
 

SS8282

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I'll try the cold/hot patches. Tylenol's the only thing that I can take. Advil and other inflammatory stuff give me ulcers.

I dont't want to have to deal with more health problems. I have enough as it is and sometimes it gets overwhelming. I get sick a lot with colds/flu and allergic reactions already.
 

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For the back pain, you may want to also try a heating pad, stretching exercises, or a back massager with heat. Today, I went with my mom to Walmart and helped her pick out a back massager. The one she got was only $15 (Dr. Scholl's Half-Back Massager). The more expensive ones I see online knead rather than simply vibrate. However, she likes the $15 one a lot and takes it everywhere with her. She also plans to take it to work.

Article: For the Aching Back, Psychosocial Help Called as Good as Physiotherapy
 

Daniel

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For the back pain, you may want to also try a heating pad, stretching exercises, or a back massager with heat. Today, I went with my mom to Walmart and helped her pick out a back massager. The one she got was only $15 (Dr. Scholl's Half-Back Massager). The more expensive ones I see online knead rather than simply vibrate. However, she likes the $15 one a lot and takes it everywhere with her. She also plans to take it to work.

Article: For the Aching Back, Psychosocial Help Called as Good as Physiotherapy
 

SS8282

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Thanks for the link - and I always thought my back problem was only physical.

I've got to get myself to Walmart here and see if they have the massager. Hopefully I have something by the time I go to Ottawa in a couple of weeks.

I find that stretching helps a lot. :)
 

SS8282

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Thanks for the link - and I always thought my back problem was only physical.

I've got to get myself to Walmart here and see if they have the massager. Hopefully I have something by the time I go to Ottawa in a couple of weeks.

I find that stretching helps a lot. :)
 

Daniel

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So far, my favorite online articles about treating back pain are by Jolie Bookspan, Ph.D.:

Jolie is the "St. Jude of the Joints." If there is a way for you to get better, she'll find it.

--Dr. James Mann, Surgeon Podiatrist, Joslin Clinic Harvard School of Medicine.
 

Daniel

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So far, my favorite online articles about treating back pain are by Jolie Bookspan, Ph.D.:

Jolie is the "St. Jude of the Joints." If there is a way for you to get better, she'll find it.

--Dr. James Mann, Surgeon Podiatrist, Joslin Clinic Harvard School of Medicine.
 

Daniel

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BTW, my mom is getting bored of the $15 vibrating back massager from Walmart. It is a good way to relax when lying down, however. A much better unit seems to be the HoMedics SBM-200 Therapist Select Shiatsu Massaging Cushion, which is the 7th most popular item sold at Amazon's Health Store. The best diagram of how it works is here. (I'm planning to get it for my mother as an early birthday present.)
 

Daniel

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BTW, my mom is getting bored of the $15 vibrating back massager from Walmart. It is a good way to relax when lying down, however. A much better unit seems to be the HoMedics SBM-200 Therapist Select Shiatsu Massaging Cushion, which is the 7th most popular item sold at Amazon's Health Store. The best diagram of how it works is here. (I'm planning to get it for my mother as an early birthday present.)
 

SS8282

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Thanks for the update. Sorry I haven't beem writing. I've been w/o internet at home for a while now. I'm using the internet at work.

That's a wonderful birthday present :eek:)

My brother got me a massager (looks like what you got for your mom) that gives off heat too. It's real cool, and it works great! The only thing is that I'd feel good for only a short while after the massage, then it's back to pain. (no pun intended)

I'm a little worried, because my back's been hurting more lately.I need to rest after walking for 20 - 30 min. The pain is there even when I've been sitting for a while too - like at work.

Hope the massager you're getting for your mom will help her. Take care.
 

SS8282

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Thanks for the update. Sorry I haven't beem writing. I've been w/o internet at home for a while now. I'm using the internet at work.

That's a wonderful birthday present :eek:)

My brother got me a massager (looks like what you got for your mom) that gives off heat too. It's real cool, and it works great! The only thing is that I'd feel good for only a short while after the massage, then it's back to pain. (no pun intended)

I'm a little worried, because my back's been hurting more lately.I need to rest after walking for 20 - 30 min. The pain is there even when I've been sitting for a while too - like at work.

Hope the massager you're getting for your mom will help her. Take care.
 

Daniel

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I'm a little worried, because my back's been hurting more lately.I need to rest after walking for 20 - 30 min. The pain is there even when I've been sitting for a while too - like at work.

You may want to ask your doctor or a physical therapist if there are exercises you can do that can help strengthen your abdominal muscles without causing injury.

I wouldn't sit down for more than 20 minutes a time without taking a little break, and you're hopefully doing that already. As you probably know, lying down puts the least amount of pressure on the back. Standing corrently with a "think tall" posture generally puts less pressure on the back than sitting. However, some people seem to feel better sitting than standing, at least my mom does with her sciatica.

If you haven't already, it is highly recommended to use a lumbar roll or some other lumbar pillow/cushion when sitting down. I just read about this in detail last week, and my mother found it helped her sciatica. The placement of the lumbar roll is important, and most people place it incorrectly at the bottom of the seat. According to The 7 Steps to a Pain-Free Life by Dr. McKenzie, the lumbar roll should be placed "at the small of your back at the level of your beltline." Of the six books on back pain I have paged through, 7 Steps is the best. It's author, Dr. McKenzie, designed one of the car chairs for Toyota and is most known for his McKenzie exercises/stretches, which are often cited in journal articles and other books.

Personally, I prefer to stand when at the computer at home because sitting down puts more pressure on my back, but such an arrangement is not easy for most people to set up. I also exercise my abdominal muscles.
 

Daniel

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I'm a little worried, because my back's been hurting more lately.I need to rest after walking for 20 - 30 min. The pain is there even when I've been sitting for a while too - like at work.

You may want to ask your doctor or a physical therapist if there are exercises you can do that can help strengthen your abdominal muscles without causing injury.

I wouldn't sit down for more than 20 minutes a time without taking a little break, and you're hopefully doing that already. As you probably know, lying down puts the least amount of pressure on the back. Standing corrently with a "think tall" posture generally puts less pressure on the back than sitting. However, some people seem to feel better sitting than standing, at least my mom does with her sciatica.

If you haven't already, it is highly recommended to use a lumbar roll or some other lumbar pillow/cushion when sitting down. I just read about this in detail last week, and my mother found it helped her sciatica. The placement of the lumbar roll is important, and most people place it incorrectly at the bottom of the seat. According to The 7 Steps to a Pain-Free Life by Dr. McKenzie, the lumbar roll should be placed "at the small of your back at the level of your beltline." Of the six books on back pain I have paged through, 7 Steps is the best. It's author, Dr. McKenzie, designed one of the car chairs for Toyota and is most known for his McKenzie exercises/stretches, which are often cited in journal articles and other books.

Personally, I prefer to stand when at the computer at home because sitting down puts more pressure on my back, but such an arrangement is not easy for most people to set up. I also exercise my abdominal muscles.
 

SS8282

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Oooh, I wish I've read your post earlier. I've already bought a couple of books and neither of them is the "7 steps". The books I got are: "The Back Doctor" by Dr. Hamilton Hall, and "Healthy Back Bible" by Dr. Stephen Reed and Penny Kendall-Reed. Oh well.

I didn't know that strengthening abdominal muscles help with back problems. Guess I should do more situps.

Which Toyota car chair did Dr. McKenzie design? I drive a Corolla.
 

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