Jeremiah 24:6 - My eyes will watch over them for their good, and I will bring them back to this land. I will build them up and not tear them down; I will plant them and not uproot them.
When you’ve been battling chronic pain and illness for any length of time, your muscles begin to lose mass and break down. This in turn makes normal tasks seem impossible to do.
Maybe you used to be able to walk a mile without even breaking a sweat. Now it takes effort just to walk out to the mailbox and back. Or maybe you used to be able to perform your duties at work without even a thought of being tired. Now you’ve had to take a leave of absence or you’ve had to quit your job because you can’t perform the tasks you used to do.
This breakdown is due to lack of movement.
When you’ve been sick, experience an injury, or have had surgery, at first it is necessary to rest and follow your doctor’s instructions on what you can or can’t do.
However, as I stated in a previous post, in a medical study they took a group of medical students and confined them to bed for one week. They measured their muscles at the beginning of the study and at the end. In only one week of total inactivity, one-third of their body’s muscle was lost. There has to be a balance.
Though your lack of movement may not be from being confined completely for a week or more, you begin to lose that muscle mass very easily.
Another reason for lack of movement may be caused by your fear of hurting yourself more. In the back of your mind you hear yourself saying, “If I get up and do this I’m going to be setting back my recovery. I better not try.”
This is where physical therapy comes in. Therapists will take into consideration your current weakness and fear of movement. They will also give you advice on how to perform everyday tasks the correct way.
They will help you restore your mobility and reduce the pain you’re experiencing. According to moveforwardpt.com in their article, “Preparing for Your Visit with a Physical Therapist,” you'll find what to expect in the beginning.
Webmd.com in their article, “Physical Therapy-Types of Physical Therapy,” you'll find addition exercises and how to perform those tasks, along with some of the other treatments you may receive such as electrical stimulation.
Keep in mind that throughout your physical therapy God’s eyes will be watching over you. He will help you build your body up so that you can decrease your pain level and restore loss of movement.
For more information on physical therapy select the link below.
Job 30:16-17 - And now my life ebbs away; days of suffering grip me. Night pierces my bones; my gnawing pains never rest.
Someone’s knocking at my door. Now they’re pounding at my door in a rhythmic drum beat with each pound sounding louder than the one before. I collapse to my knees.
The headache is back.
When thinking of the different types of chronic pain, headaches have to be at the top of the list.
A headache doesn’t just cause pain. It disrupts our thought processes and when it’s a more severe type of headache, you can’t think of anything else but how to get rid of the pain.
There are at least 150 different types of headaches. Find fourteen of the most common headaches and their causes from CBS.com in their article, “14 Kinds of Headaches and how to Treat Them,” such as rebound headaches and weekend headaches.
Sometimes no matter what we do our headaches don’t go away. It’s like the Bible verse above which paints the psalmist life as ebbing away because of his suffering and the pain that never rests.
Know that you don’t have to go through this alone. God is ready to comfort you and help you walk through your painful journey.
Psalm 146:7 - He upholds the cause of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The LORD sets prisoners free.
A detective sits behind his desk when a woman in a striking black dress walks up to him. The detective invites the woman to sit down and asks why she’s there.
The woman begins to explain that she works in the retail sector and used to be able to stand all day without any problem. But now she can hardly stand for a few minutes before pain strikes her back and she must sit down.
She explains that the pain isn’t the only problem - she’s about to lose her job.
The detective doesn’t quite understand. And though he can sympathize with her story, he doesn’t know what the woman wants him to do. He said that he’s used to tracking down criminals and placing them behind bars.
“But that’s why I’m here,” she exclaims. She wants the detective to find out what’s responsible for her pain.
The detective starts to refer her to a doctor and that he’d be better suited to her needs. But the woman insists that the detective has to take her case, because after seeing multiple doctors no one has been able to find the cause of her pain. She believes that if she finds the cause she’ll find the cure.
As the detective ushers her out of his office, once again the woman is left with no answers.
That’s how it is with chronic pain. You can see many doctors and still not have any answers as to what is causing the pain.
You want to; no, you have to pin the blame on someone. Something. Anything.
But many times there is no real cause and that baffles the doctors as well as the patients.
When considering why chronic pain has become your companion, find a list from healthline.com in their article, “What is Chronic Pain?” and the article, “What Causes Chronic Pain?” on webmd.com to find some common causes of chronic pain such as years of poor posture and osteoarthritis.
This list may make you feel overwhelmed. However, with the combination of web research you can do on any of the above pain causes listed, and finding a specialty doctor such as an internal medicine doctor may provide you with some clues. That’s the job they do. They collect all the pieces that have caused your health to decline and pain increase.
I realize that seeing another physician may not be what you want, but the internal medicine doctors are good detectives in finding out how to help you.
And as the Bible verse states above God upholds the cause of the oppressed and can set you free from your prison of pain.
1 Corinthians 9:24 - Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.
Someone I know is getting ready to have a third back surgery. The man has been in so much pain for so long and he’s only forty years old.
He began losing strength in his leg and the inability to stand up straight. After much thought he decided to go back to his surgeon and see what could be done.
But it’s not just a surgery that he’s made a commitment to. He also has to be committed to live his life differently. It’s hard for me to think about his age and then think about the life he’s going to have.
You see the surgery will remove bone fragments, but it won’t be able to restore his back to normal use because this is his third surgery. With each surgery the improvement rate drops.
I think that’s where the rub is – not being able to return to a normal life.
Find a list of things you can do to improve the outcome on spine-health.com in their article, "Practical Advice for Recovering from Back Surgery," such as keep common items close by and avoid bending over too far.
You can find a few things that can compromise the outcome of your surgery from sinicropispine.com, in their article, "4 Ways You're Sabotaging Your Spine Surgery Recovery."
Now that you know what you can do to improve your chance of a successful recovery do so as the Bible verse above says. Run in such a way as to win. Work hard. Give it all you’ve got and God will bless you as you walk through recovery.
Karen Dalske is a freelance writer, public speaker, is active in her church and writes her blogs out of her own experiences of pain, illness and loss.