Hey guys and welcome back to my little corner on Arthur’s Place. This week I thought I would talk about my recent trip to the Pain Clinic. My rheumatologist referred me, as I was recently diagnosed with fibromyalgia, and I have not been coping with the pain at all.
To be honest, I was skeptical about it. I had attended an ‘Ouch Out’ clinic when I was younger and didn’t find it helpful at all, so I was expecting the same sort of thing for this. Oh how I was wrong!
I had heard before that pain clinics have really helped other people, and from reading through related posts on Arthur’s Place Social, the Arthur’s Place Facebook group, I gathered from other members that these appointments could be very few and far between.
I had an afternoon appointment and by the time we got there I was shattered, and due my afternoon nap (yes I am a granny). To top it all off, it was on the hottest day of the year!
When I got there two specialists, a clinical psychologist and a physiotherapist met me. I was initially very nervous, as I didn’t know what to expect at all, or whether they would be able to help me manage my pain better.
The appointment lasted around an hour, and I honestly found it so helpful. They didn’t once speak to me as if I was just imagining the pain, and they didn’t say anything negative, which was refreshing. They asked how the pain affects me each day, how my pain changes through the day, and how it has changed over the years.
Now, I have had arthritis since I was 14-months-old, so I have had pain all my life, and never really known anything different. But I would definitely say the fibromyalgia has hit me harder, and for me it is worse then the arthritis, in ways.
Recently the pain has really been getting me down. My activity level has halved and I haven’t even been able to walk my dog for short periods, for fear that I wouldn’t get back! I have had no energy and have felt totally wiped out, and in so much pain, that I haven’t been able to do a lot at all.
I walked out of my appointment feeling hopeful, though. I came out with a list of options to try to get me back on my feet, and they even suggested some options for the future if I was still struggling.
Two weeks after and I have been putting in place the suggestions they made, and have been put on a new medication to better treat and help me deal with the pain, which seemed to work within half a day. I have definitely noticed a difference in my pain levels, and my energy and concentration has improved a bit, too. It has made me realise that I didn’t notice how much pain I was in and how it really was impacting my everyday so much.
I now do a stretching routine every morning before I get up, which has made me feel far less stiff, and I have started getting back to a more regular exercise routine, which has also helped my reliability and pain as well.
If you ever get the opportunity to go to a Pain Clinic or see a pain management team I would leap at the chance. I feel like I’m starting to get my life back in control, and although I know that all of this is not a cure it is definitely making the quality of my life better and my life more fulfilling.
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(Any opinions expressed in Lottie’s posts are not necessarily shared by Arthur’s Place. Nothing that you read in Lottie’s posts constitutes medical advice.)