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Thread: Thinking clearly while in the pain tunnel

  1. #1
    Senior Member grommet's Avatar
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    Thinking clearly while in the pain tunnel

    Any advice on keeping level headed during pain? I had an especially bad bout, it was a 9 for four days. I lost reason, I got tunnel vision. I couldn't think of anything else, things that were good, that I liked or were important to me. I was in the tunnel. The pain finally broke and it was like I could see outside again, the wind, the weather, other people.

    Does anyone have advice for protecting yourself when you disappear into the pain tunnel, I am hoping there is something I can do to help me keep thinking straight when I am in so much pain I can't and I start wishing I would run into O.J. Simpson when he was having a bad day.

  2. #2
    I am in that same place a lot and have been for a long time. Last night in bed I couldn't lay still. You have to tell you self to keep going and just do things even if you don't feel like it. It all seems to pass. Life's a bitch and then you die but this shit sucks big time. Listen to music or play on the computer or do some easy. I felt like going to the er but just put up with the pain and that is about all you can do. It is called life on the edge for some reason. You can ask for help but I haven't found anything that helps yet.

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    Senior Member grommet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevegalliazzo View Post
    I am in that same place a lot and have been for a long time. Last night in bed I couldn't lay still. You have to tell you self to keep going and just do things even if you don't feel like it. It all seems to pass. Life's a bitch and then you die but this shit sucks big time. Listen to music or play on the computer or do some easy. I felt like going to the er but just put up with the pain and that is about all you can do. It is called life on the edge for some reason. You can ask for help but I haven't found anything that helps yet.
    Thanks steve. I have some disc injuries but not SCI. I will keep trying to think of stuff. It just alarms me how much my thinking changes. In pain, life gets very narrow, pain breaks suddenly I can look around me again.

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    Senior Member flying's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grommet View Post
    Thanks steve. I have some disc injuries but not SCI. I will keep trying to think of stuff. It just alarms me how much my thinking changes. In pain, life gets very narrow, pain breaks suddenly I can look around me again.
    Can totally relate to this. My pain for years has come mostly in two week cycles. The last three or four days are total hell. The day after it breaks is my mind recovery day. I think about it like, if your were tortured by the enemy for four days, (not to mention the kind of torture the rest of the time) then rescued, it would take a day to get over it. So give yourself a break on that day for sure.

    As for a way to be level headed during the last four days, if you can keep your mind occupied with something else, it helps to not be only a ball of pain, which really messes with your self worth.
    T12L1 Incomplete Still here This is the place to be 58 years old

  5. #5
    If you have not previously worked on a meditation therapy for this, you might want to investigate Mantram Repetition Meditation. It has been found helpful for both PTSD and chronic pain in Veterans.

    http://www.jillbormann.com/4.html

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xhW17rHPr9A

    https://www.bmcm.org/learn/mantram/

    (KLD)
    The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

  6. #6
    If it becomes unbearable laydown close your eyes and take a break. That is what I do. It doesn't always work but it gives you some rest from the struggle. Eating food slowly also seems to help and you focus on other parts. Also taking a shower seems to be a nice change.

  7. #7
    Senior Member grommet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flying View Post
    Can totally relate to this. My pain for years has come mostly in two week cycles. The last three or four days are total hell. The day after it breaks is my mind recovery day. I think about it like, if your were tortured by the enemy for four days, (not to mention the kind of torture the rest of the time) then rescued, it would take a day to get over it. So give yourself a break on that day for sure.

    As for a way to be level headed during the last four days, if you can keep your mind occupied with something else, it helps to not be only a ball of pain, which really messes with your self worth.
    I am glad you understand. My problem is that during a long severe pain episode, after a while I can't seem to control my thinking anymore. Over the years I have learned all sorts of things and had some good success. I remember having a really fun day with friends. I went out even though I was sweating from the pain but although it was there all the time I kind of 'laughed above the noise. I just had fun anyway. Maybe I am not being busy or social enough now and that's the difference. I just know that by the fourth day I was no longer the same person, I started to feel crazy and the pain was my only center. All ideas came from it and it was the only thing I could see. My thinking got very small. It's like a kind of psychosis. Not really but my thinking changes so much that I stop seeing the future and start thinking bad ideas are okay.

    Pain can grab your brain. Maybe I really do just need to find a way to be busier so that when this comes again I stay occupied anyway. It worked in the past.

  8. #8
    Senior Member grommet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
    If you have not previously worked on a meditation therapy for this, you might want to investigate Mantram Repetition Meditation. It has been found helpful for both PTSD and chronic pain in Veterans.

    http://www.jillbormann.com/4.html

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xhW17rHPr9A

    https://www.bmcm.org/learn/mantram/

    (KLD)

    Thank you, I checked out the links. I didn't find enough information but I think the idea could be helpful.

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    Senior Member grommet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevegalliazzo View Post
    If it becomes unbearable laydown close your eyes and take a break. That is what I do. It doesn't always work but it gives you some rest from the struggle. Eating food slowly also seems to help and you focus on other parts. Also taking a shower seems to be a nice change.

    It's interesting you mention showering because so many times I have noticed I felt so much better after a shower. Maybe it is focusing the mind elsewhere. From all I have learned about pain, it is only present in the brain - the brain decides. I am less active than I used to be and maybe that is affecting my thinking more than I realize when I have these tough episodes. Without a distraction - something else to think about, I just get 'crazy pain brain syndrome'. Thanks for the support, I think I can keep back the crazy if I keep myself busier. It's so subtle, the change that can start to happen when you begin doing less and your health becomes the bigger part of your life. I think that's maybe when crazy starts happening for me.

    Looking forward to the Abilities Expo this weekend. I am usually surprised by what I run into. Heck last time I found my new powerchair.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by grommet View Post
    Does anyone have advice for protecting yourself when you disappear into the pain tunnel
    Exercise and changing body position helps me provide lasting lower back pain relief. Using a standing frame or inversion chair may provide quicker pain relief but may not last as long.

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