Posts tagged with: Health

Strangers can cheer you up!

285/365 health and happiness
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Pam Belluck recently wrote a piece about how strangers can cheer you up if you let them! I was encouraged to read that “a cheery next-door neighbor has more effect on your happiness than your spouse’s mood.” I’m without a spouse, and so hearing that my cheery next door neighbor (hi Judy!) can make me happy is exciting!

The study goes on to say that “if your friend’s friend’s friend becomes happy, that has a bigger impact on you being happy than putting an extra $5,000 in your pocket.” Now THAT’s happy!

Read FitSugar’s take on the same story here!

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Abortions are not “non-events”

Albert Wynn and Gloria Feldt on the steps of t...
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I am pro-abortion.

That’s a scary sentiment to put on the internet, but it’s the truth. I have never been put in the situation where I had to make a personal decision, but I’ve had friends and loved ones who have. I have no right to say what they do with their body is right or wrong, and so I vote pro-abortion.

Even being pro-abortion, I know that abortions aren’t “non-events.” For many women they are highly emotional experiences leaning towards traumatic, even. Apparently there are pro-abortionists out there, though, claiming that abortions are non-events. Science has proven them wrong.

Read more about the recently released study here:
Abortion myth about depression falls before science
New Mental Health Studies Dispel Myth That Abortion Is A ‘Non-Event’
Abortion Increases Women’s Mental Health Problems: New Study

There are still people out there claiming that there is no emotional link, however:
New Report Finds No Link Between Abortion/Depression

What do you think?

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I’m not dead …

HP Pavilion zv6115EA.
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… but my laptop was for a few days. I ended up having to reinstall my operating system so everything is essentially gone from the computer. I’ll get it back on and get back to really writing some quality women’s health stuff soon! I promise!

If there’s anything you want to read about, please do let me know! I’ll probably delve into a holiday theme because of the month, but we’ll see what comes out!

Stick with me, it’ll be worth it!

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Intimate partner violence and chronic pain

Chemical structure of cortisol.
Image via Wikipedia

I read an interesting article this week showing that there is a predisposition to chronic pain in women who have suffered with intimate partner violence.

Abusive Partners Predispose Chronic Pain by Rick Nauert explains that even two years after separating from an abusive situation, many women still experience “high-disability chronic pain.”

I would have never made a connection in my head like this without someone else prompting it. “The authors noted that chronic stress caused by IPV may inhibit how the body naturally adapts to stress and causes imbalances in cortisol levels.” That makes sense. Cortisol levels are the cause for most inflammation in a person’s body – and when things are inflamed, they aren’t healthy.

I’d love to know more about this connection, and I’d also love to know if there is a personal story out there willing to be shared. If so, please email me. No information would be shared here without permission, but I would really like to talk with someone who is willing.

Living with an invisible illness is not easy, help me educate those seeking information!

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Painful realizations

Tylenol 3 - a compound of Tylenol and Codeine

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Six weeks ago I received my rheumatology “first visit questionnaire” and filled it out. Three pages of pretty detailed questions “Considering all the ways in which illnesses and health conditions may affect you at this time, please indicate how you are doing:” (on a scale of 0, very well to 10, very poorly) and shading in “usual pain” areas on a pretty buff male figure (maybe they used Hugh Jackson). Tonight I pulled the paperwork out, as I’ll see the rheumatologist tomorrow and I wanted to double-check the answers. I am concerned.

Tonight I am in a very different place regarding my pain than I was six weeks ago. This week has been particularly hard on me (I hope it’s due to stress and the changes in weather) and so I amended the questionnaire in a different pen than what I used before. I am concerned that there has been such a steep decrease in my functioning in six weeks. I’ve even talked with a friend about allowing the rheumatologist to suggest antidepressants. I know the pain isn’t in my head, but if I can change my head space about the pain, I think that it would lessen. Aleve, Advil and Tylenol do nothing for me. I have prescriptions for Vicodin and for Oxycontin which I’m not comfortable using more than once or twice a week right now, but I might have to change my mindset about that as well.

For those who don’t know, I am a true believer in prayer, and so I have been praying fervently for relief. I am beginning to feel lead to pray for a different mindset about the pain I’m currently in, though. A close friend told me that this pain may be the thorn in my side, it may be the reminder I need to lean on my Maker, my Abba, the One who will heal me the day I meet Him. I think she may be more right than she knows.

Related articles

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My marble theory of chronic pain

None - This image is in the public domain and ...
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Creative Commons License photo credit: Pingu1963 

Today at Help My Hurt I was directed over to But You Don’t Look Sick to teach me about The Spoon Theory. Reading about how Christine Miserandino taught her friend about living with lupus reminded me about how I’ve taught people I live with chronic pain. I have used this explanation with a few friends and it seems to give them a sense of how I live my life.

For those who are healthy, you have unlimited marbles and you can keep them all in one bowl, or you could put them in 26 bowls, really, only the fact that you have unlimited marbles matters.

For those living with chronic pain, fibromyalgia, lupus, migraines, and many other illnesses, marbles are limited. Your body tells you how many marbles you get.

Each week I’m given 70 marbles and seven bowls. I put ten marbles in each bowl and proceed to go through my week, spending marbles as I need to. Normally Mondays are hard at work and easy at home  and so I’ll only use six or seven of my 10 marbles. I move the remaining three marbles to Tuesday’s bowl. On Tuesday, depending on the week, I either use all 13 of those marbles, or sometimes I can save another five or six and move them to Wednesday. Oftentimes, by Friday, though, I am breaking even again. However, there are often weeks where I’m in the negative by Thursday, though, and the rest of my week includes some really hard days. Saturday and Sunday are normally pretty low-key days in my life because I literally don’t have the marbles to get up and go.

Sometimes, like right now, I have a Monday where I start out with five marbles. I stayed up too late on Friday night; I drank, was on my feet AND stayed out too late on Saturday; I spent most of the day Sunday in a highly emotional state. When I do this to myself, I know what I’m getting into. I knew, when I fell asleep during Family Guy (which yes, means I missed American Dad), I knew I was in trouble today.

The social side effects of living with chronic pain are rough. My close friends understand that I’m not a flake, I just sometimes don’t know how I’ll feel on Friday night even after I tell you on Monday that we can go out after church. I budget my marbles pretty carefully most of the time, in hopes that I can function. I try to sleep enough (which is an entry all on it’s own; I think I’m continually dealing with sleep deprivation), I watch what I eat in hopes of getting the right nutrition for my own condition, I try to do some regular workouts (in hopes of avoid weight gain and my doctor reminds me continually that light exercise will help my pain), I’ve been in all forms of physical therapy, I take extra potassium and I spend a lot of time seeking spiritual healing. These things may add a marble or two to my week’s total, but aren’t always enough.

With a more concrete example, I hope you can understand how many people live their lives. It’s not fun, it’s not glamorous, but it’s an easy way to visualize taking care of yourself.

I budget my life with marbles.

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People in chronic pain show higher suicide risk

A woma...
Image by Getty Images via Daylife

Just released: People in chronic pain show higher suicide risk. My response? Duh. A study finally shows what those of us living in chronic pain have known for years; it hurts and we want it to stop. My experience is that many patients in chronic pain often feel as though they have no other options to make the pain stop when their doctors tire of the struggle.I did a short series on chronic pain (herehere and here) after reading about the death of another woman living with chronic pain. 

If you know someone who is struggling with their chronic pain and has mentioned suicide, please please please call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) and be proactive to prevent further pain.

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Have a pregnancy myth and want to be famous?

(FILE PHOTO)  In this handout photo, a model w...
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I want your pregnancy myths.Share them here and be featured in the WEGO Health birth control newsletter!

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Your birth control pill isn’t making you fat

Not pregnant
Image by blmurch via Flickr

Have you read? Hormonal birth control pills do not cause weight gain? It might be the fact that you’re getting older, you’re eating more or you’re exercising less, but your birth control pills are not the reason your pants feel too tight today.

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November Theme

Suicide rates by Health Service Area (HSA), 19...
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November brings a themed month to Women’s Health. What theme would you like to see me write about? ( polls) 

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