What song is your body singing?
Burn Baby Burn!
Walk This Way
Hurts So Good
Walking On Broken Glass.
Are you hearing a music playlist or feeling your body’s pain song? Pain is a message that can sound as subtle as The Kinks or as loud as Def Leppard. Maybe you’ve heard the word neuropathy. Although, you may not care what the doctor calls you just needed it to stop! Medications and physical therapy are typical treatments, but health science is singing a new tune. Psychologists and neurologists are chanting meditation therapy for pain, while exercise physiologists are rocking loud to the exercise jam. Is your body singing in harmony with the angels, or is it as discordant as the devil? Maybe you could try a different tune? Integrated therapy might harmonize the body's symphony of sounds and feelings.
Neuropathic pain is “pain driven by a lesion or disease” (1). Diabetes, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord disease or injury, Parkinson’s disease, cervical or lumbar radiculopathy, sciatica, HIV/AIDS, post-surgical, cancer, and chemotherapy can cause neuropathic pain. Pain may have been the first symptom that drew you to the doctor. You may have already tried pain medication, physical therapy, heat/ice, or electrical stimulation. You are not alone. Nationally, 24 million people go to the Emergency Departments to treat their pain, (2). That’s a lot of people in a lot of pain. Imagine being at that symphony! Probably sounds painful. However, there are some new instruments at our disposal. There is a new song on the charts! Meditation is proven to combat pain changes in the brain, (3). Meditation therapy could conduct those devils into harmony.
Pain affects the whole orchestra. It limits movement and function; causes anxiety and depression and the resulting low quality of life makes for a lonely song. Heard any social isolation ballads recently? Meditation is the practice of conscious attention – a sort of listening to your private tune. Breathing, visualization, progressive relaxation, and mindfulness are a few methods you could try. Study after study proves the significant benefit of meditation to pain relief, (4). There is a direct correlation between the skill of meditation and the ability to control pain. Like any musical instrument, the more you use it, the better you become. Let meditation be the conductor of your pain symphony.
Practice makes perfect. Practice also improves the analgesic effect. The more meditation the better the pain control. Begin however is convenient - take a class, find a guide, or listen to an app. Read a story, go for a walk, or sit in silence. Be cautious of your environment. Meditation and driving do not mix. Although, being a mindful driver might lower your insurance rates. Meditation is to practice listening to your thoughts, understanding your history, focusing on your feelings, and even paying attention to the pain signals themselves...wait, what?!? Pay attention to pain! This does take some work. But like any instrument, song, or musical piece, the more you practice, the better the sound. The exercise physiology group is jamming to a new groove! Exercise is pain therapy, and recently, some physicians brought the disease/pain symphony into harmony.
Always discuss new exercises with your physician.
With every turn, turn, turn, turn, you feel the burn, burn, burn, burn, and with every season, a new pain. Diseases and injuries are like the lyrics of your life. Neuropathic pain lives in our whole self. Sometimes we have to learn a new dance. This study linked specific exercises to specific diseases, (1). They found best practices to include resistance strength training for cervical and lumbar radiculopathy, spinal cord injury, and post-stroke pain; aquatic exercises and tai chi for sciatica, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s pain; and aerobic exercise for diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and HIV/AIDS pain. Discuss these recommendations with your physician to begin your best healing approach. Exercise is the latest boy band to enter the entertainment scene. A new groove could be the best move for holistic pain control.
A great master once spoke of the Great Song. When he first sat in meditation, he could hear the birds and the breeze. As he listened further, he could hear the trees and the bees. Sitting long enough the mountains and oceans began to chime in, and then…the voices. Millions and millions of voices are all speaking, crying, moaning, laughing, praising, and singing together. Neuropathic pain has a Great Song. It sings through our body, mind, spirit, and social health. Whether you feel pain vibrations of angels or devils, classical music, or classic rock, your pain song therapy should include integrated health.
Hopeful Healing is an integrated health service specializing in education and instruction of best health practices for your disease process. Group classes and private health services help you REACH for YOUR highest HEALTH.