In my journey of chronic pain, I have learned some things along the way. I’m trying to stay positive with my posts about this, but I also want to be as informative as possible. I’ll be doing more of these types of posts so I don’t overwhelm anyone with info. 😊
Find a trustworthy Primary Care doctor.
I have the best PCP, who has been on my side this entire time. He is understanding, and he wants to help. He’s willing to refer me out, he’s knowledgeable, and he’s always willing to fill my disability paperwork out. Specialists are always going to send you back to your PCP, so you want to make sure that he/she is someone you trust.
Be your own advocate.
There will be many doctor appointments along the journey of chronic pain, and it is important to listen to your doctor’s advice. Ruling things out is necessary to be sure you’re not missing something crucial. However, sometimes, you need to do your own research and try different things on your own. I referred myself to a pain management doctor in the beginning, for example. Never stop researching, and as my Dad always says, ‘be your own advocate.’
When you’ve seen as many doctors as I have, you start thinking about other ways to take care of yourself that doesn’t involve modern medicine. This is where alternative medicine comes in. I’m at a point where I will try pretty much anything to help me. I currently see a chiropractor who makes my back and neck feel better. I’ve tried acupuncture, but I’m not sure I liked who I was seeing. I went to a homeopathic person yesterday (who was AMAZING) – he does accupuncture, but he’s also a nutritionist, chiropractor, and he has knowledge of different supplements to use. I do physical therapy. Plus, I’m taking vitamins, supplements, essential oils, etc. You have to start trying other ways if the modern stuff isn’t working for you.
The emergency room isn’t always a good option.
Now, before you read this wrong, please go to the emergency room if your symptoms have increased or changed. If you feel it’s an emergency, go. You don’t want to risk it. Here’s what I’ve learned though- don’t get yourself all worked up if they don’t help you. The emergency room is there for true emergencies, and not for diagnosing. If they can’t find something immediately wrong with you, they will send you home and tell you to follow up with your PCP. I went to the emergency room four times since this started, and every time, I went home crying because they couldn’t help me. But, I now understand why, and even though it sucks, it’s also good they couldn’t- that means I don’t have anything life threatening. And I’ll never complain about that.
I hope you found this interesting and maybe useful. I have a neurology appointment coming up soon, and I’m hoping they will be able to help. Have a great day!