So, as my page About Health mentions, I’ve got a few physical issues that I’m dealing with. Most of them chronic, and a lot of them bringing me varying degrees of pain and/or discomfort on a daily basis. The page also mentions (for those who don’t wanna click the link) that I cannot take pain pills for various reasons. But, you know dear reader, there comes a point where a person will try pretty much anything to bring a little relief into their lives. I’m not one for woo woo techniques. I’m not a spiritual person, and I’m not going to “become one” with the pain or anything else for that matter. I’ve tried hypnosis and actually woke up in the middle of it to tell the hypnotist he was full of baloney. Actually what I said was that his visualization technique wasn’t working and he should try something else. He put me back into a trance (which I’m perfectly susceptible to) but none of his jibber jabber worked. Like, ever. Being in a trance is one thing, being open to suggestion is quite another.
But that’s neither here nor there. The thing is, when one cannot take pain pills, one gets desperate to find things that help. Now, I posted a while back that was looking one day to find something to help spasms in my back and I found, instead, a “cure” for leg spasms. Believe it or not, I read that if you stick a bar of soap under your sheets, it will help with leg spasms and restless leg syndrome. What a crock! I thought. But it didn’t cost me anything to try it, so I did. Well, whaddya know? It worked! (Cue angelic choir) And not only did it work on my leg spasms, but it also worked on my back spasms. Can you believe that? I know I didn’t believe it. But it totally did/does. I was shocked and amazed too. So now I can get through the night fairly pain free, and that is a relief. By the way, it does nothing for my stomach distress or my heartburn or any other chronic pain… I’ve yet to see if it will affect a migraine. But hey, one cannot expect miracles. I’m surprised it did anything at all.
The other thing that worked and absolutely cannot live without is called a squatty potty (TM). I’ll confess, I’m not exactly sure where I learned about this contraption, but I’m glad that I did. If you have IBS or any other digestive disorder, I would highly recommend a Squatty Potty or something similar (I don’t think I have an brand name SP, but something similar). You can read up what it is and what it does on their website — though I think it’s kind of obvious from the picture. In a nutshell, it’s a stool that fits around the commode so you can put your feet on it when you poop, raising your knees and aligning your innards better for better pooping. I never thought that such a simple thing could make such a huge difference in my life. Less than $50 and it’s saved me so much time, pain, and effort. Seriously. I used to sit in the bathroom until I lost feeling in my legs because of my IBS-C (sorry if that’s TMI, but it’s a fact of life over here) but now I don’t have to. No pill to take every day with god-awful side effects, just lift the knees up. It’s really that simple.
I’ve talked before about some of the elimination diets I’ve been on because I know that sometimes cutting just one thing out of my diet, or even scaling it back tremendously… can make a huge difference. For example, I did an elimination diet a long time ago to try and figure out what was giving me migraines. Turns out it was High Fructose Corn Syrup. So, I don’t eat anything with HFCS in it. Or I try not to. It’s in nearly everything made here in the USA so it’s really difficult to have a diet devoid of HFCS… but I do my best because I really dislike having migraines. The last few elimination diets I’ve done were to try and figure out what’s causing the pains in my stomach. Turns out it’s not one thing in particular but if I eat a combination of things — too much fatty food too quickly for example. Like, I can have fried chicken if I want it, but only one or two pieces and I’d better not eat anything else that fatty for a week unless I want to be in a world of pain over here. I can have pizza if I want, but I’d better not eat anything else tomato based for a while unless I like tasting bile (GERD is a wonderful thing… NOT). Elimination diets aren’t forever diets, and they’re not meant to be. I see blogs all over the place where people stay on their elimination diets for years and years, but that’s not the purpose of an elimination diet. They’re to weed out what — if anything — is causing the symptoms so you (and I) can make a choice about that food.
Don’t get me wrong about any of these. They are by no means cures. Whenever I wake up and get out of bed, I still have all kinds of aches and pains in my back and legs (and elsewhere). But the soap somehow — I don’t know how — stops them from hurting at night. Is it the placebo effect? Could be. Even if it is, I’m not going to tell my mind to stop fooling itself and start hurting again. Screw that noise. But who knows? Maybe the soap works… we just don’t know why. And the stool around my commode doesn’t cure my IBS in any way, shape, or form. It just makes things easier in the bathroom. Much easier. So much easier, I cannot see life without it.
Eliminating food from my diet isn’t a cure either, it’s avoidance of triggers. Just as me not going outside whenever the sun is at a certain angle keeps me from getting migraines isn’t a cure. Generally when a condition is chronic, there is no cure. The only thing one can do is alleviate the symptoms. That’s what these do. Anyway, I thought I’d share. If you have something weird that works for you… Please share in the comments.