Re: Hello everyone/Thanks for responding
Jackie, Ed & Andy, thank you so much for your kind & welcoming words. I appreciate the support.
Jackie, in answer to your question about what a flare is like for me, I can tell you this: My pain level (on a scale of 1 - 10, 10 being the worse pain ) changes with a flare, from my usual daily pain level of 5 - 7, into a horrid pain level of 8 - 10. My anxiety increases with the pain which, in turn, creates more pain. During a flare, I hurt everywhere from head to toe and the pain throughout my lower back & neck (my most vulnerable areas) keeps me imobilized.
With my daily pain level I get around quite well using a walker and/or cane but during a flare, I can barely walk from the couch to the bathroom. I use opiates which help on a daily basis but they are not very effective in reducing the pain associated with a flare up. The best I can do, as Ed & Andy suggested, is rest. I also use heat & ice & do stretching exercises if I'm able. I have a massage chair (lazy-boy) so, during bad days, I spend a lot of time sitting in my chair with my feet up. Unfortunatly during a bad flare, I lose my focus to read, so instead of delving into a novel, I end up watching too much television. I also have trazadone on hand (trazadone is an anti-depressant that is also used as a sleep aid) and I use it sparingly during a flare, as a muscle relaxant and to help me sleep.
As a matter of fact, I feel a degree better today and I hope this is the beginning of the end of this particular, monster flare.
Once again, thank you for responding to my post & making me feel so welcome. I wish you enjoyable & pain-free days.