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Alternatives and possibilities for pain relief

CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
Following on from a couple of recent posts by other members that piqued my iinterest I started to wonder what other alternative remedies or devices are available. I welcome any suggestions ideas or feedback from anything you have tried, good or bad.

No alternatives should be used without first reasearching fully and where necessary seek medical advice.

The first thing that I heard about is the "Paingone pen ". I had never heard of it, so a review was in order. It turns out to be a simple version of a Tens machine which is applied directly to the area that is giving trouble. A quick search on ebay and I found some. Prices vary greatly, genuine Paingone pens from £17.39 to some joker asking £56. There are also very similar looking devices from China at under £8. Further reseach at two well known pharmacies also sell them.
First to arrive was the look a like for £8.
Simple to use, grip it in your hand, hold the point against the spot and click the button 30-40 times. It is a piezo electric pulse that is suposed to trigger the natural pain relief in your body. It can work through clothing so can be used anywhere. Test is on going and I will report back .

Next came the genuine Painegone pen which works in the same way but at twice the price. Very difficulty to tell the difference, build quality about the same but with better instructions and a guide to using it on acupuncture points. Test is on going so more later.

With both of the above, immediately my wife had a problem. With severe arthritis holding and clicking was just not possible, so a no go if you have gripping problems.

Next I came across the Paingone plus. This was more expensive at around £30. A quick look and this one is battery operated, only requiring one click, hold in place for thirty seconds then remove and click off. This will be much easier to operate so wrappped it up and put under the tree :)
So test is on hold at the moment.

I will come back with the results of my testing.

I welcome any other suggestions you may have for pain relief. If you can recommend or rubbish any alternative, legal, device, liquid, spray, pill, food or herb please feel free to share.

Next I heard about CBD or medical marijuana as it is also known. This I will review in my next post

CR
 



Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste

Replies

  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    So Medical Marijuana.  What is is, how to use it and is it legal ?

    I have never taken illegal drugs and know next to nothing about them. I have heard of medical marijuana but always dismissed it as being " Pot or cannibis" that my GP could give me :)

    If fact medical marijuana has little to do with getting high. The two things come from the same family of plant, Hemp but medical marijuana comes from a strain of the plant grown to produce high percentage of Cannabidoil (CBD ) which is non psychoactive and very little of the psychoactive and and illegal THC.

    There are many claims that this could be a miricle cure for all manner of ailments, As always do you own research and get medical advice.

    How do you use it ?
    So far I have found Dry Herb for making tea, Crystals and powders for use in food, Topical oils for rubbing on your skin, Crystals for going under your tongue and Liqiud suspensions in  Gycerine which can be taken oraly, added to food or vaped if that is something you do. There are capsules and even jellybaby type infused sweets. There seems to be no limit as to how CBD's can be used.

    Prices vary depending on the product and the concentrateion of the CBD in the product. BUT it is not cheap !

    So does it work ?
    I first started looking into this following a recent post on here that claimed it had a beneficial effect on the persons stammer !
    It is not an instant cure for anything and takes a little while for it to build up in your body.
    First up I tried a spray on topical oil. I have a neck problem that physio can do nothing about, stiffness that means I cannot turn my head, basically it is very painful  trying to move my head in any direction. So with gay abandon I sprayed some of this oil on my neck and rubbed it in. ( I did do a small test area in case of a reaction first ) The smell was not over powering and not unpleasant but certainly not a perfume for a date.
    I don't know what I expected to happen, there was no sensation, no burning feeling, nothing. I forgot about it and got on with my day. A couple of hours later Iwas in my car and had to reverse, not thinking I turned my head and for the first time in years I could see out of the rear screen. My head turned with no pain, more than it had done for a very long time. The effect did wear off by the following day, so not a cure but a successful trial. since then I have used it on a painful muscle in my leg and my wife has used it on her back. In all cases it has had an effect of easment for a while.

    As  yet I have not tried the tea.
     
    I used to Vape to I dug out my old gear to give it a try. I did try a bit on my tounge , not a great flavour. It does vape but again not the best flavour and I suspect that continual use may have some effect but certainly ni " High " as in illegal pot.

    The trials will continue and i will up date with any results

    CR   



     
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @CockneyRebel Please can I thank you for writing about this.  My story is that it is such a minefield finding the right meds.  I am a old fashioned gentleman.  Hate making a fuss.  If in pain use over the counter meds.  Doctor is there for us but I hate overcrowding the surgery for every little ache and pain.  Recent have had a lot of pain some days are worse than others.  I put up with the dull ache and constant pain in muscles and joints.  What can be taken safely?  When I was withdrawing from alcohol on meds,for pain plus others.  Any way so much pain withdrawing met similar people who advised me to take cannabis in a tea form.  Problem was I was stupid to do this as I became addictive to that.  I wished I had not listened.  Problem is what options are there.  Got off the stuff.  I know in the States legal farms are licensed.  To supply  Marjuana for medical purpose.  I do think they need to be more research in to this.  With going into too much the down side is the side effects and the crime implications.  I know in the States even licensed growers having problems with crime.  I enjoyed reading what you said and the answer must be out there.  I understand for those with chronic pain
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  • Neil2017Neil2017 Member Posts: 157 Courageous
    Hi @CockneyRebel and @thespiceman
    Fortunately for me I am not in any physical pain myself although have been in the past. I was saw a tv programme in which the programme’s presenter or reporter’s main aim was to see if patients were addicted to prescription medications or could actually live without them. One ‘candidate’ from what I can remember was on anti-biopics. But another was on prescribed painkillers although they were often taking more than the prescribed dosage. I can’t quite remember what exactly was done - whether the medication was replaced by a placebo drug or dosage cut down. But it was finally proved that the painkillers had little effect as they’d been taken for so long. 

    So so I guess tge question is do prescribed drug painkillers only have an effect for short periods of time and then this gradually wanes? And should some sort of alternative therapy replace it? Or should painkillers and equivalent types of more powerful drugs be taken whatever little effect they have.
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    It can definately be true that some pain killers become less effective for some people after extended usage in the same way as antibiotics also become less effective

    @thespiceman I wonder have you have tried Hemp seeds in your diet ?

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • wildlifewildlife Member Posts: 1,314 Pioneering
    @CockneyRebel I have had 2 bad whiplash injuries from car accidents and today have had a nerve pain down my left arm and going into the back of my hand. Not pleasant at all. I checked online and found some acupressure points for arm and hand pain. It's free and harmless (I think). I tried a couple of points on my shoulder which incidentaly are very tender and pressed down with the middle finger of my right hand. As I type this the pain has almost disappeared.    
  • RosiesmumRosiesmum Member Posts: 76 Connected

    @CockneyRebel I got really great relief from reflexology (the foot massage thing) I first had a session at our carers centre and it was brilliant for years when my back was just a bit dodgy.

    Unfortunately when I started slipping discs it wasn't as effective but for mild to moderate pain I'd recommend giving it a try.

    It's the most weird thing and I was worried as I'm hyper ticklish lol but it's no problem until they touch the area on your foot that corresponds to the affected area the it can be rather uncomfortable..on your foot!

    As I say it's weird but very worth trying,some hospitals and pain clinics use it and as I said carers centres often have reduced charges.

    I haven't resorted to pot quite yet the flippin' tramadol was bad enough :):)

  • TopkittenTopkitten Member Posts: 1,263 Pioneering
    I have suffered Chronic Pain since 2005. It is caused by multiple collapsing discs in my lower spine and compounded by (currently) my second cervical disc rupture. The easiest way to describe it is that it is similar to, but different from, multiple slipped discs. Initially it was 2 discs but it is now up to 7 or 8 and it is progressive. As I have suffered pain from nerves to my lower body being damaged I now suffer permanent damage to the nerves in most of my right leg. I believe the process is spreading slowly into my left leg also. I have been on (and listed elsewhere) all of the medications available for pain from Paracetamol to Fentanyl. If anyone needs advice on these then please ask as I can usually give advice based on the patients perspective. For some reason the doctor's do not understand the pain, in my case, tends to be centred around the joints, leaving the muscle areas reasonably pain free. Over activity can change this though. In simple terms I have to avoid mobility by walking and, if I really want to reduce the pain, lie down. Sitting with my legs raised is a good compromise but leads to inertia and difficulties engaging with normal society and it's activities.

    Tramadol and other morphine based pain killers should never get you high or hallucinating at the correct dosage. If these effects occur then your dosage is simply too high and you need to discuss with your GP about either reducing the dosage or stepping up to it in a more controlled fashion. Suffering longer whilst working up to the required dosage is well advised. The most common source of these complaints, in my experience, is from people taking other people's prescriptions. I have met too many people handing out their prescription to others for more mundane pain issues.

    Most pain killers will work in the same way and treat nerve end pain. They will not work properly on damaged nerves because they get directed to the wrong pain receptors. There are a few medications specifically used for treating nerve pain (Amitryptylene, Nortriptylene, Gebapentin, Pregabalin & Duloxatine). All of these were originally used to treat mild depression and the nerve pain treatment is still not fully understood by most GP's.

    In earlier days I used a Tens machine but found 2 major problems. The first is simply that the patches need to be affixed to my lower back. As large areas of my body is covered with hair (a lot of it fine and not normally obvious) it was very difficult to stick the patches to me and have them stay in place. I did find a solution to this which I shall mention in a minute. The second point though is more critical. Suffering chronic pain 24/7 means that my internal pain relief system is permanently (or as much as it can) already triggered. Thus the Tens system and Paingone will have little effect as it is that system that they attempt to trigger. So for me neither will work.

    As I thought the issue was the patches not sticking properly I looked for (and found) an alternative. Boots sell a Tens belt. It works on the same principle but the patches are embedded into the belt. As they belt is tightened to remain in place so the patches also remain in place with no need to be stuck on. There are also no wires and the control unit slips into a pocket in the front of the belt. I also found the options available more complex yet simpler to use than a standard Tens machine. All in all for around £30 (when I bought it) it is a much better option if you pain is below where the belt sits. For upper body pain it isn't a great deal of help.

    I have seen advertised on TV a machine to put your feet on which appears to be based on the Tens idea and is aimed at walking and lower leg stimulation. However, for people in my position it would be little help for the same reason the Tens machine isn't.

    I have had a spinal injection of NSAID's (anti inflammatory). There is a similar method for pain medication. These can be problematic and the number of people they work for is limited but is often a method that is tried if pain persists beyond low level medication.

    I have also been tried with acupuncture. This has a higher success rate than spinal injections, is less intrusive, less problematic but again once tried if it doesn't perform within specific parameters will not be a continual procedure.

    There is one factor that is never discussed nor mentioned by any doctor. They are quite happy to discuss the apparent 'getting used to' issues which can lead to continually higher doses with no apparent improvement. They will also discuss the 'addictive' qualities of the stronger medications. What they never discuss nor seem to understand is the body's ability to tolerate pain and deal with it itself. This is a method I have used a lot over the years. Technically I am suffering much more than I am supposed to but I tolerate it most of the time, ignore it when I need to and simply 'switch off' the normal day to day levels down to where I can behave and operate as normally as possible. A lot consists of 'giving in' to it and simply assuming a posture and a withdrawal from activity that I am constantly told isn't good for me. I medicate the worst away and find ways of dealing with the rest. Over the years I have learned to raise my internal tolerance so much so that, if it were possible, if someone else controlled my body for a while they would be screaming in pain constantly. There is nothing clever in it I have just taken less medication than prescribed and allowed just enough pain through the mask which allows me to still function. I have obviously had to also reduce the things I do for myself accordingly and adapted to that also. I pay for a cleaner through Age UK so that is a set of tasks I don't have to worry about. I iron only a few things now and again instead of all the stuff I used to do. I eat when I can manage it, lowered my cleanliness down to acceptable levels rather than the paranoid society levels and yet no one notices or complains that there is anything I am not doing. It only becomes apparent if carers get involved. There is no real need to shower once or twice a day and none at all if you aren't leaving the house that day, for example. A quick wash is usually sufficient.

    A lot of what I do is through learning 'Pacing' via the Pain Clinic. I make a vast use of this information to come up with a regimen acceptable to ME. I NEVER do something that is unnecessary and only dictated by the standards of healthy society.

    I am quite happy to discuss how I cope on specific matters either in open forum or vie PM if anyone is sensitive to it and prefers to not announce it.

    The trick, if there is one, to dealing with any solution is to not rush into doing or not doing something that will help you. Don't try to eliminate all the pain immediately, work up to it. Don't try to change your life in one day, take it slowly and gradually reduce or eliminate one thing at a time until you find an acceptable balance. Healthy people will tell you this is the wrong approach and so will most healthcare professionals and care providers but they are NOT the person who has to cope, YOU are.

    Out of curiosity I only had a small problem with becoming used to medication and wanting more for the sake of it and that was in the very early days when I was trying to get rid of the pain in a rush. Because of that I kept asking for more Cocodamol than I really needed. Now the situation never occurs because I only use the smallest amounts I can get away with so my body never gets used to it because it is always concentrating itself on dealing with the pain as best it can itself and allowing the pain medication to be used. Ofc my body would like more pain killers but I have, if you like, trained it not to keep asking.

    TK
    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @Neil2017 Thank you for reply Just reading what you are saying.  It is common sense to be aware of the side effects of the meds you are taking.  Problem is the body is reacting to the levels of meds that are prescribed.  Over time tolerance becomes an issue.  That is why when you are prescribed meds as you probably know you have a review by doctors every three months.  How are they?  Are there any side effects etc.  I am speaking for me here no one wants to be in pain.  I understand those with chronic pain and the big question is how long should you put yourself through the pain barrier if nothing is working.  Take me for example I take over the counter meds and I am aware of the side effects.  Also do I want to go on to something stronger.  My health history I have stated before have from a young age taken meds constantly on and off for nearly thirty years plus.  I have been told the residues could have caused some of the effects feeling now.  Constant tiredness, aches and muscles hurt all the time.  Yet combined with my addiction history as well.  All drugs have their limits.  As many have stated on this forum.  It is still an interesting debate.  Especially the use of other drugs not on the market.  If you go on line massive debates in the States legalising these sorts of drugs.  So complex and the arguments are still out there.
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  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @CockneyRebel Thank you.  In answer to your question.  No I have not tried hemp seeds.  Probably need to do some research and need to look at what they can do.  Just a note if I find something like a herb or spice that I feel is going to benefit me health wise.  Always look on web for information and careful about usage.  I am aware of side effects and being OTT on usage.  Never take too much.  Not advisable.  You would not take a load of chilli with out tasting it first.  Even the size does not matter.  Most herbs and spices have side effects if taken in large amounts.  Thank you for information.  Best wishes take care.
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  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    @wildlife Accupressure can be a very useful non invasive form of relief. There are many guides available. I studied these many years ago when I enrolled on a course of chinese medicine.

    @Rosiesmum Reflexology is, to many, a strange idea that by massaging your feet can affect different parts of your body, but to a skilled practitioner the feet are a map of your body. A while ago I studied Auricular therapy, which involves stimulating points on the ear, much like reflexology, the ears are also a map to the body.

    @TopkittenThank you for your  very valuable insight, few people understand what a collapsing disc is like.

    @thespiceman knowing of your interest in herbs and spices prompted me to ask the question. I would be most interested if you decide to look into this

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @CockneyRebel Thank you for reply.  How are you?  I would like to do this.  I have I believe already some time ago say about my interest in herbs and spices.  I often quote on various forums.  I just worry some times that if I say the health benefits am I breaking any forum rules on giving advice.  As with anything like this.  You might be pleasantly surprised some of the health benefits.  I will let you know.  Thank you for raising this complex matter on pain relief.  It has been compelling.  Hope to speak to you soon
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  • RosiesmumRosiesmum Member Posts: 76 Connected

    It's a fascinating subject really and as all people have such different tolerance levels,not just to pain but also to the medication it must be a nightmare for practioners too.

    @Topkitten I deal with my pain in a very similar way as like you I've been dealing with it for so long now (35 years) I have quite a high tolerance level.

    I only resorted to a single dose of tramadol before my op as I got to the point I literally could not see straight due to the pain but unfortunately the Tramadol made me so light headed I could only use the dose if I slept after but it boosted the co-codamol enough for me to function vaguely.I  haven't had to use it thankfully since the op.

    I find,like you pacing is the best way to cope.I know my limits and try to stick to them but at times it is hard and that's when the problems arise!

    It is hard when you hear there's no more surgery they can do so you're stuck with what you've got..My son is under the RNOH for his orthopaedic issues and we've really reached the limit of what they can do for him now so we just have to hope it holds together!

    I will be interested in hearing how you get on with the hemp seeds @CockneyRebel and @thespiceman as that's something I can easily add in to bread etc

    I used to use Linseed in bread for my autistic son when we had him on a special diet I really do think there's a lot to be said for using natural herbs and spices as well as certain foods for health reasons as well as pain relief.

    Just remembered I used to use Rosemary oil in the bath too that really helped with my back I soooo miss not being able to soak now since we had the wetroom installed.Mind you I'd have trouble getting in and out now lol can't win can we :)


  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi thepiceman

    Thank you I am happy to be here. I hope you are having a good day.
    Posting your opinion about the health benefits of herbs and spices, as long as it is not intended or considered to be medical advice is allowed on the forum. I am sure that many members will be interested in your findings

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @Rosiesmum Thank you for replying Pleased to meet you.  Yes I have used for my own health.  I can see the benefits.  I would not recommend to take these for replacements with out medical advice.  As I take pain relief over the counter meds but using certain herbs and spices can ease some of the symptoms of our ailments.  I never say to someone anyway take this instead of this meds you are on .  Please can I make that clear.  I hope as I say try to give people some idea of is available.  Thank you.
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  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @CockneyRebel Thank you for letting me know the what I can say about herbs and spices.  I am grateful for your advice thank you.  Having read recently about certain spices and the alternative medicine scene.  The popularity of stories in the media on the benefits.  I know thinking back in my mind I saw a story that some one had sent in to the forum.  A lot of comment saying about certain herbs, spices and other things that can help with various conditions and ailments. A lot of mystic.  I just do want to be that person and hope to give some input what is out there.  I am not recommending replacements or giving my medical opinion or saying try this to replace already known prescribed medicines.  I am not a doctor.  I will let you know what happens.  Best wishes as always take care.
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  • RosiesmumRosiesmum Member Posts: 76 Connected

    Hello @thespiceman it's lovely to talk to you too!

    Yes I agree with you about checking with your GP first as even a simple thing like a bath oil or a herb can affect certain health issues and medication very good point thankyou!

    I have a wonderful old apothecary book which lists all the ailments and suchlike and gives details of herbs you can use  it's called Culpeppers Herbal,might be of interest for you if you can get it from the library maybe?Makes interesting reading.

    There's many modern equivalents such as Grow your own drugs,(legal ones!) and the James Wong books.I do an awful lot of reading when I can't do much else :)

  • TopkittenTopkitten Member Posts: 1,263 Pioneering
    @Rosiesmum , like you I know and should stick to my limits.... then I have a day like today, lol! I posted elsewhere about spending Xmas day with my son but, what I didn't mention was that when he arrived he walked around the house with mud on his shoes leaving mud everywhere. Also he had been drinking most of the day so I had a couple of things broken, had to dive to save the chicken hitting the floor as he pushed it off the worktop and, his major problem, his complete inability of aiming into the toilet when peeing. So, as I had a visitor today, I have had to hoover the house and mop the bathroom in addition to tidying the place. Neither of those should I do and usually pay a cleaner to do. Consequently I have literally collapsed into my chair twice today, both times sleeping for 2-3 hours just so I could cope with dinner and spending time on here. Kids! Lol!

    TK
    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @Rosiesmum Thank you for reply.  Yes Thank you for information on various books out there.  This is why I joined this forum to meet people like yourself and give myself information I did not know.  I recall so many stories from friends and the like saying when I have shown them what I do.  Using herbs and spices.  Problem is they never listened.  Even showing them how much and what dosage. Well the outcome not good.  Silly really just be sensible and listen and learn.  I mean one of issues is that careful what you use.  My garden has rosemary in it which in Italian cooking is used a lot.  It is a strewing herb and a infusion.  That is the fresh.  Then there is the dried completely different way to use.  Great with every day use in Italian cooking Ragu and other types of tomato sauce etc.  Soapy taste if too much.  Just a very small amount.  Same with chilli either dried or fresh taste first or measure out.  Top tip all spices have oils and can burn.  So measure all ground spices blitz in a mill then into a bowl with hot water then sets off chainreaction and prevents spices burning when added to the dish you are doing.  When you add boiling water to a spice then you can see you do not need a lot.  As I had a friend who just added to boiling water a lot of chilli powder on phone to me with coughing and spluttering.  Complaining about streaming eyes..  Never listened and I had showed him what to do.  I hope every thing is going OK and I hope to speak to you soon Take care.
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