Milwaukee Board Certified Chiropractic Orthopedist writes: Constant pain can really get to you. There are two common responses to pain that are particularly damaging and usually make things even worse.
One is trying to ignore the problem and just cover it up with drugs. This has become particularly problematic since the COX-2 inhibitors (Vioxx, Celebrex, and Bextra) were taken off the market for contributing to heart problems. With the decline in the use of these drugs came a nearly equal increase in the use of Narcotic analgesics like Oxycontin and Oxycodone which have become drugs of choice with addictive personalities.
The other response is to limit activities so the pain isn't worsened on the chance that it will go away and the person won't have to put any attention on it.
I have seen people get so resigned to their pain that they decide to just give in and try to avoid the pain. They start to do a bit less each day, watch more television, do fewer of their favorite activities. It's like they gradually shut down their life without realizing it.
One time a lady came in whom I hadn’t seen in a while. I checked her out. She could hardly move and she was having back pain that shot into her leg. Yet she said she was doing "just fine." She couldn’t stand for more than a couple minutes, couldn’t sit long, and on days when she could go to work was so limited that she had delegated nearly every function to someone else.
But she said she was OK. As long as she didn’t do ANYTHING, she was OK. When I asked her what she would do if it got worse, she said it wouldn’t get worse because she just refused to do the activities that aggravated her. And if something started to bother her, she just wouldn’t do it anymore.
Well, eventually just getting up out of bed in the morning is going to aggravate her! So her life will become just lying in bed all day, but she will be "OK."
Not really. Not for long anyway.
Because when you decide to ignore the problem by taking drugs or by limiting your daily life, the pain doesn’t just go away. Gravity never quits. So the force on your spine doesn’t either. Eventually you will either drug yourself and limit your life so much that you have no life or you will have to act to confront the reason the problem is there. These are the only two options really.
Sorry, but I can’t help someone who is OK with giving up. Enjoying life less and less. Waiting for the next bad thing to happen. And just ignoring the real problem. I don’t think that is you.
But if it is OK with you to have no life then just keep on doing what you are doing, then take the drugs, get the shots, and wait until you beg for surgery. Use your cane, when that doesn’t work, get a walker, and then get a wheelchair.
But if you decide that is not for you then you have to take action. No-one else can do it for you but we are here to help.