I get asked a lot how I cope with pain and the truth is I do a lot of complaining.
Sometimes I ignore it and I will do things like go ice skating and regret it for days after. Sometimes I get grumpy about it and go into a ‘no one understands me waaaah’ anger huff. Other times I actually actively try and help myself. I know that’s hard to believe, coming from me. But I do actually do good things for myself sometimes.
I thought I’d be cool to impart my years of pain management experience on to you folks. I’ve had 12 whole years of trial and error with this, and I hope these tips can help at least one person!
- BATH TIME! – I know this is a rather obvious thing, but its not just lying in hot water that can help! I use body and facial scrubs that heat up, which really helps inflamed muscles and joints. I recommend Soap & Glory No Clogs Allowed self heating face mask for your face, chest and neck. Not only does it make your skin feel amazing, it helps distract you from the seething pain around your upper joints. My favourite product for bigger joints has to be Sanctuary Hot Spa Sugar Scrub. I absolutely swear by it. Not to mention the aromatherapy aspect. Like all Sanctuary products, it smells unreal and lingers for a long time.
- WASH THE DISHES! – Okay, hear me out on this one. When my doctor suggested this to me as a teenager, in front of my mother, I was RAGING. Because dishes are a chore, but honestly, moving your hands around in hot water really helps loosen your knuckles and wrists up. Not to mention you’re being productive in the mean time! Even if you’re allergic to washing up liquid, use rubber gloves and make the water even hotter. Seriously, try it!
- LIST DISTRACTION METHOD! – This is another one that sounds odd, but I’ve been told numerous times to try ‘mindfulness’ and I never found it in anyway advantageous. So I tailored it to my own ridiculousness. So when I’m feeling particularly lousy pain-wise, I start listing things I’m interested in. Whether that be my favourite movies, songs from an album in order, artists.. anything! I will do this whilst listening to a white noise app called Shhh to keep myself focussed and zone everything else. Obviously this is just distraction, but I find it helps take my mind off it even after I’ve completed whatever lists I’m making in my head.
- READING! – Again, I am aware this is just a distraction technique again but concentrating on something intensive really does help reduce my pain. I was stubborn about this kind of thing at first but in practice I tend to read more because I’m using it as a mind diversion. In a way, I’m well read because of my arthritis. I’m all about spinning things to be positive!
I hope these tips can even help one or two people, and if you find them helpful or have any great tips to share with me, please comment and tell me!
Thank you for reading,