Central sensitization: the back story to just about every story I tell on this blog. I’ve written the phrase a million times, but always in passing, always with a link to an article somewhere else. I think it’s high time the topic gets its own post. Practice Makes Perfect We’ve all heard the phrase “practice … More What is central sensitization?
In Part 1 of this series, I explained how the learning the “muscle energy technique” from my physical therapist Paula marked a turning point for me in my SI joint journey. Above, I’m including a Youtube video of a physical therapist demonstrating this technique. (I actually use a few different variations on the moves she … More An Update on my Sacroiliac Joint Saga, Part 2
A few days ago, I went for a walk around this beautiful historical estate that’s practically next to where I live now. I’ve been making some big changes in my life recently, and some of them have been pretty difficult. This park feels like home to me, so I went there to clear my head. … More I understood myself only after…
The nervous system has a system of checks and balances that ultimately determine how strong a pain signal is experienced by the individual. Different parts of the spinal cord and brain can play a role in either magnifying or weakening the pain signals traveling through them. How a pain signal is amplified or dampened depends … More Treating Chronic Pain as a Two-Way Street
This is a really well-written post on an important subject from The Sports Physio. It is by a physiotherapist, intended for other physiotherapists, but it was also really meaningful to me as a patient. (For my readers in the US, physiotherapist means the same thing as physical therapist). The author, Adam Meakins, talks about how … More Everything in moderation, even the best things
Update, Sept. 2016: I have come a long way in the two years since I wrote this post. I’ve learned, I’ve researched, and most importantly, I’ve strengthened my entire body. I can tell you now that sacroiliac joint issues are real, and it is possible to heal them! I’m leaving this post up as a testament to … More My saga with the sacroiliac joint
Today, Ruby shocked me by taking her first swim of 2014. It was awesome. As you may remember from my previous post about her, Ruby is my family’s 14-year-old Lab mix (she’ll be fifteen in July!). She is a spunky, spirited dog, but due to some benign tumors in her left hip, as well as … More The benefits of swimming in cold water
It’s been a few years now since I first began to understand my pain problem– three, to be specific. Since then, I feel like I’ve made a lot of progress in terms of how I view pain and my nervous system, and how much trust I have in my body. Finally, I was able to … More What’s going on with me right now
This is the eighth post in an ongoing series. If you would like to start from the beginning, click here. The last post in this series was the hardest to write, and that’s why, of course, it took me so long. I was just starting to get a handle on things by my sixth visit. … More How a physical therapist helped me through my lowest point, Part 8
Ruby seemed to have a lot of energy this morning, so I decided to take her for a walk at our favorite spot. We walked for about half an hour– me all bundled up, and Ruby wearing her nice new $45 coat (oy!). The path was a bit slippery following yesterday’s snow storm. There was … More Do we feel more pain when we’re alone?
Hi everyone, Wow, it’s been quite a while since I posted on here. It’s been great to see some new followers roll in, and I’m looking forward to getting to know you. One of the reasons I haven’t had much time to write recently is that Ruby, my family’s 14-year-old Lab mix, has been having … More Dealing with a Pet in Pain
**If you are new to my blog and would like to start at the beginning of this series, click here.** From the elliptical trainer, we moved on to some very gentle weight lifting and core exercises. For reasons neither Tim nor I understood, the hospital he worked at had recently made the decision to … More How a physical therapist helped me through my lowest point, Part 7
**If you are new to my blog and would like to start at the beginning of this series, click here.** Part 6: Re-adjusting my concept of what is “dangerous.” When I was running long-distance in high school, I’d really pushed my limits. Pain didn’t scare me as much as my irrational fear of gaining … More How a physical therapist helped me through my lowest point, Part 6
Of course, I’m not saying everything is perfect now. But I’m definitely way better off than I was a few years ago, and a lot of that has to do with how I’ve changed my perspective on pain. Two important ways in which my thinking changed: 1) Understanding that not all pain comes from a … More How I’ve (Mostly) Made Sense of My Issues
This is the fourth part in a series about an amazing new approach to physical therapy for chronic pain patients. To start from the beginning, check out Part One, Two, and Three. For the first few visits, all Tim and I did was talk. He didn’t have me in the gym doing exercises like all … More How a physical therapist helped me through my lowest point: Part Four