Important Conversation Last Week With my Primary Care Physician and Opioids

http://blogs.fda.gov/fdavoice/index.php/2016/02/changing-course-a-new-approach-to-opioid-pain-medication-at-fda/

My treatments for chronic pain are changing. This is a personal decision I chose after several years of thought and a trial run varied products in the Medical Marijuana dispensaries. Every person who lives with constant pain must decide their own paths, we are each unique with unique pain patterns and life styles. Previously, I have tried the SSRI’s, the anti-seizure meds, and over-the-counter medications. They all failed to work for me. Either they didn’t touch my pain or they fogged up my brain more than it already gets fogged. I have been left with opioid use. Opioid use as prescribed is still very hard on our entire system and causes physical dependency. This creates a slight need to increase the dosage every few years to achieve the same relief.

In order to address my overall health and decrease my dosage, I began trying CBD first, then added in a low dose of THC at night and during flares. After doing this for the last three months, I am seeing a decrease in my opioids; not dramatic but by two pills on “normal” days and more on flare days! I blog about honest relationships and taking personal responsibility with your doctor. Last week, I informed my PCP about my use and my intention to radically decrease my opioid use over a period of several months.

He was completely supportive. He believes medical marijuana has many cross modalities benefits in pain control and much less toxic effects on our system. During this discussion he informed me that the FDA will be radically changing who is allowed opioids and who can prescribe it. This will occur within five years.

I feel that this is not common knowledge in our population and decided to inform my peers. I also decided to be transparent about my decisions in pain treatment. It won’t fit for everyone, it’s not simple for me! THC knocks me out cold, meaning it’s not an option if I go out or need to work. It could adversely effect me in job searches or closing a job offer. For me, natural, less toxic, pain relief is the first step to living better, the rest will sort itself out.

Please read, and research further, the above link.

 

 

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Accepting my Limits, Creating New Strengths

It is very difficult to accept limits on living your life. I have gone through this process before; during the first three years of my diagnosis of fibromyalgia. These last few years I have had a much harder time. Maybe it is because I am older now. Maybe it is because there are more than limits now. Or maybe I am just not willing to let go of my dream that I spent ten years creating. At the end of the day, none of this matters, I have to accept my new limits and create new strengths.

Just like the first three years of living with this chronic pain, my loved ones are tired of me being limited. They are tired of hearing about it. Tired of watching it and tired of helping me. I can not say I blame them as I am tired of it all as well. The disconnect that worries me the most is that they want me to fix it “now” and I am not capable of spinning a magic spell that will get there tomorrow. I am able to begin to plan steps to follow that will get me there, and, it is time to start.

Sure, they could go on and assist me indefinitely and I could continue to feel guilty and disempowered. But my mental health is on the line now. I need to affirm my new strengths. To start this process I need to know what they are. Just thinking about starting over again in this planning, journaling, and finding the new me is overwhelming. This makes taking even the first step daunting.

As daunting as it may be, I am beginning to take that step. I have begun to reorganize my home life in order to function within better. That is the first and most important step we all can take. Once we are able to feel empowered to handle at least some of our lives in our world, we can begin to find more hidden strengths.

I am beginning to realize that spending those ten years following my passion for social work, to assist persons in physical and mental distress, was not entirely a waste. I may not be able to do all that I learned, heck, I may be only capable of doing a small amount of it, but, I can still do it! I have started here, on this blog. I am beginning to branch out from this blog to more on social media. I have recently thought of what I might be able to create or offer to agencies out in the brick and mortar world.

None of this will occur tomorrow. It might take me a year, it might only be six months. I have put these ideas down in the section of my journal entitled, “Important Thoughts”. I use this journal daily. I will continue to take the time to work on my new strengths and stop focusing on my limits every day. We can all do this, I know we can..

Creating the “Me Space”, It’s Not as “Easy as Pie”. More Wellness

Source: Creating the “Me Space”, It’s Not as “Easy as Pie”. More Wellness

Social Workers who Believe in Fibromyalgia and Started the Concepts of Helping the Peers with our Invisable Pain

2007 Link to Article on Social Work Today

Good Day Peers,

I found this very interesting. I am, currently, a non-practicing Social Worker/Therapist, so this interested me quite a bit. I am actually moving in the same direction with my work concept as these social workers have already; actually, I went to back to school for 10 years to find a way to integrate psychological, advocacy skills, to stop stigma and to create and implement programs for our invisible disability. From this article, I found that there are centers around the country that have created programs just to assist us.

I also read about the early thoughts, (I say early as items like exercise are just now becoming mainstream medical processes for us), stating that there were many factors needed in order to address us living Well. Most of these are now in vogue, although they do not help all of us. I know firsthand that assistance like exercising to build body strength and getting our endorphins going (the happy neurotransmitters) are not for everyone. We all experience our symptoms and capabilities differently. However, with that said I do agree that we should all try our best to practice all of these methods. We should not just rely on medications.

I hope you enjoy this article, it has keywords in it that can give you further help if you Google them as also.

Lucinda Tart, Fibromyalgia Peer Advocate/Life Skills Coach

Living with Fibromyalgia, Non-Medical Assistance

Living with Fibromyalgia. The Fibromyalgia Network.

Here is the best link to helping us Peers with our ADL needs. This is another website that directly assists only Fibromyalgia survivors to live Well.

I have a Thera-Cane; it works really well for the spots on my back I can’t reach. I highly recommend it, with the accompanying book. View the second link for more information.

Amazon Thera-Cane, Book and more Books

Hugs

Lucinda, Fibromyalgia Peer Advocate/Life Coach Advisor