What can you do to make your day better? Here are some tips on how I personally deal with my EDS!
- Stay Positive with Tiny Goals This is the hardest part. I used to have days where I would ask myself, “Martina, what’s wrong with you? Why are you so sad? Do you hate your job? No. Do you hate your husband? No. Then WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU!!??” I felt like I was going crazy for being so anxious and depressed for no apparent reason. What I didn’t know at the time, was that there is an emotional toll of chronic pain. It causes anxiety, stress, depression, anger, and fatigue which in turn, decreases the body’s production of natural painkillers.
- Make your bed a floating marshmallow dream Get a foam topper for your bed mattress, a soft pillow (I use feather), and have a trusty toy that can support your shoulders if you sleep on your side. I have a chubby pig named Kogi and a toy sushi to support my knee.
- Pain Killers and Anti-inflammatories I tried the route of taking serious pain killers including Tramadol and Meloxicam and I had terrible side effects. Although it helped for a short time with my depression (which was caused by chronic pain) it messed up my stomach. Getting off of Tramadol was TERRIBLE and I never want to experience withdrawal symptoms again. So now I take 800mg of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (like Advil) after breakfast and around dinner. Reducing inflammation around your joints can help make everyday tasks like getting up stairs a lot less painful!
- Ice Packs Ice, ice, baby! I have a whole collection of different shaped packs to reduce swelling. When I get home from work or a day out, straight to the ice packs. I have some with elastic bands on them that help hold them in place and I have some large gel icepacks that I wrap onto my body using tensor bandaids.
- Braces and Splints If you click here you can check out my super sexy brace gear (hahaha it’s not) that helps to keep my joints in place on a busy day out.
The fact is, you may not be depressed because of anything in your life at all. The overlap between depression and chronic pain can be explained by biology. Depression and chronic pain share some of the same neurotransmitters and your brain chemicals act as messengers traveling between the nerves.
Essentially it’s a vicious cycle of feeling bad physical and feeling bad emotionally and they just feed into each other.
SO, what can you do? This is where thinking positive and having small goals comes into play. I try to surround myself with things that make me happy and bright. I love Sailor Moon! I love stuffed toys! I love manga, anime, and Korean/Japanese dramas. When I’m having a bad day, I think: hey why not watch a tutorial on youtube and learn a new braid? Let’s learn it and share it with other people! Grab a cupcake from that local shop. Make yourself a delicious meal. Paint your toenails. Learn to knit. Start a blog about something positive. These small achievable goals give me something to be positive about everyday.
Do you have any suggestions that help you out? I’d love to hear it! Let’s share it with everyone and drown in an ocean of positivity hahahah!