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Archive for July, 2008

Today I went for a walk down the old Grantham canal. We parked up just on the other side of Cotgrave; a small village just to the south of Nottingham. The canal area has gone into ruin due to the lack of investment, even though there had been plans to restore the waterways in the area for local boating.

locke gates

Next to the canal itself there are now laid pathways on one side where we mostly walked. It was firm under foot and not muddy. This is highly unusual for our walks. If I don’t come home caked in mud then I just don’t feel right (sarcasm). On the opposite bank it had been partly laid too and there was other unofficial pathways which didn’t entirely join up. Still, it was possible to do sort of a circular route with a bit of imagination.

Views were a bit restrictive as tree and bushes grew high and there were no hills. There was though the occasional fisherman, which interestingly looked like he is disabled as next to him was one of those electric cars. He sat quietly drinking his tea looking into space and enjoying the sunshine. I can’t think there’s many fish living in the canal to catch, but I know fishing is not always about catching them – Its about having an excuse to be outside somewhere else other than home. The pathway seem to be popular with cyclists and dog walkers too.

There was a fair bit of wildlife; You had to dance over the slugs that littered the pathways, You really don’t want to tread on a slug (messy). You could hear Yellow hammers chirping in the trees, who have a call not to dis-similar to “a little a little bit of cheese” and the old squeak of rabbits too. I walked past one hedge row and something shreaked at me and I think they was a rabbit too. It didn’t half make me jump. There was the usual bemused cows in the field, that always are so very co-operative when taking pictures.

Canal Bed

Soon we hit some of the disused part of the canal, which by comparison seemed dead, though it wasn’t. As you see from the photograph, there’s no water and trees have taken over the canal from this point onwards.

The walk was uneventful other than some young idiots that were riding bikes and possibly looking for trouble. They said hello to us and then made an unpleasant comment. 5 minutes down the track we saw chocolate wrappers scattered all over the pathway and silver foil in the water. These kids are clearly morons and have no respect for their environment or the wildlife. It makes me angry seeing such disrespect. Young people say they want respect, but do they give it? Do they hell.

Other the young dimwit litter louts, it was a very pleasant afternoon with a round trip of roughly 8 miles from Cotgrave to Cropwell Bishop and back. My legs hurt quite a bit Saturday night and I slept rather well too.

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Up to recent years no one that knew me would ever say I had trouble with sleep, in fact its been my worst enemy in some respects as I’ve never been able to get enough of it. Many teenage sleeping patterns went into my 20’s and I would often go into work tired despite having a good nights sleep.

In the present day now I find sleep very difficult indeed. Its not just getting to sleep, its the quality of it and then if I am woken up once then I am unable to get to sleep once again. The world is a little dumb to me if that makes any sense. I believe that’s a result of long term sleep deprivation. Of course I know what is causing it, chronic pain.

I have some incredibly disturbing dreams too with a constant feeling in my dream of pressure on my neck pushing me down and then the blackness folding around to almost suffocate me. I wonder if its the lack of sleep causing this or is it that my brain is still reacting to my discomfort. Its obvious that I am going into REM (rapid eye movement – dream state) but not quite ever reaching deep sleep.

If I can’t sleep I will tend to listen to an podcast or a meditation track a friend of mine bought me. I don’t know how to meditate, but listening to the sound of a rain storm does appear to relax me, though I don’t always get to sleep. I often get up and use the toilet instead!

I need some deep sleep…

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Mind Fog

Sometimes its so hard to explain to anyone, even my own family that sometimes I have this mind fog still where I slip into a state where I can barely think straight or string a sentence together without saying erm i few hundred times. It can happen during fairly lucid days. In the morning I could be having a discussion about ‘John E Sarno’ (whose book I am currently reading) and in the afternoon I can slip into a state of high anxiety where I seem to lose all my intellect and cognitive ability. Its not just that my thoughts slow down but my dexterity and co-ordination too.

I thought I was starting to win the war is fending out this bone headedness but apparently its not. Its pretty bad. I used to like going out walking on my own to places I don’t know, but now I can’t go on my own because I literally forget where I put the car and how to get back. I got really fed up with trying to explain this to my GP and to this day I’m sure he thinks he helped. After the third time of trying to explain it to them, I just sighed and gave up. I actually got quite angry with him as he kept offering me a sick note. For the love of god man, keep your sick notes. I want you to do something vaguely useful I was screaming inside. This is the sort of typical NHS GP we seem to get nowadays.

Anyway, the mind fog I get scares me as it almost makes me a different person. Could it be that I am slowly going crazy or could it be that the pain I get every single day is wearing me down. To be honest, I have forgotten what its like not to have pain. About the only rest byte I get from it is when I have a few drinks which of course damages other organs. I think if I carry on, on this road I could quite easily become an alcoholic in 5 years time. But what I am suppose to do when my GP is useless and therefore I can’t even get to try any alternative services the NHS has to offer?

I feel like my memory is shutting down some how. Pretty much all everything between 10-16 has gone. You know like you are suppose to remember your teachers names and your friends names. I don’t remember them or even what they looked like. I remember slightly more up to around 25 but after that until a couple of years ago its like there’s a black hole that is growing. Things are being erased. I remember once I even forgot my own age and I had to work it out! It just feel like I am regressing intellectually speaking on the whole and slipping into stupidity.

One of the main reason I write here is because it helps me to remember and if I lose all my abilities then I least its written down somewhere. At least its documented. Apart of me is fearful that it might be something else, but I dare not think about that. I am not always the most stable or together person. Sometimes the persistent, relentlessness of the never ending spine tingling pain is just too much for me and it leaves me so wary of life… so wary of just tomorrow.

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A couple of weeks ago I decided to look for some private physiotherapy in my local area. I actually emailed a few clinics in Nottingham with mixed results. Rachel Burr of The Heath Coat Street Clinic was very helpful by email and even gave me some interesting things to think about. You don’t often get that prior to shelling out money to a consultant and I think that’s really nice. I think kindness like that is worth a mention.

I’m becoming increasingly interested in Trigger point therapy, though not in a weird way. I don’t believe trigger point can cure everything. I do believe it can help with short term pain relief and save me from taking drugs. Rachel did come up with an interesting point that I need to treat the underlying condition that is making the trigger points so sensitive. She is right of course, but the problem is I don’t really know the cause at the moment.

I hope to make an appointment to see her in the not too distant future and learn something new perhaps. Of course I’ll share as always.

Rachel doesn’t know I write here. I don’t tend to discuss I maintain a blog with any one involved in my treatment, though I wonder if they already know since I always pump them hard for information which I add to my knowledge and it comes out in a later posts once its been thoroughly processed in my brain case.

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I don’t have a clue how you lot read my articles I wrote entirely using Dragon Naturally Speaking, as when I read them back some days later it looks like a complete bumbling idiot has wrote them or someone that is seriously high on pain killers.

Sometimes I get over confident with the voice recognition and forget it really sometimes a complete bag of nails. It goes through periods of getting lots of stuff incorrect and because of my slight dyslexic brain of course I don’t always notice the errors. Here’s me thinking voice recognition is suppose to help. hmmm.. To be fair it does, but its just sometime goes nuts and wildly incorrect for some unknown reason and it isn’t a memory issue with the PC – It has 3 gigabytes going spare.

I don’t take pain killers in fact I have given up on the NHS and GP’s that are more interested in running their surgeries like a business rather than helping patients. Sadly, statistically speaking you are far more likely to recover from RSI if you have private healthcare than if you rely on our NHS. God, I wish I had health insurance.

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CT Cream Revised

I’ve still been working through the Pot of CT Cream I bought so many months ago. Since discovering that much of my Repetitive strain injury may actually be coming from my back (spine area), I decided to retest it by applying the cream liberally on these trigger points and to my absolute amazement there was a decisive improvement. Obviously the improvement isn’t long lasting and you have to keep applying the cream, but there is a measurable improvement. I think it comes down to understanding where you pain is coming from rather than just applying it where it hurts. With repetitive stain there’s a big portion of it appears to be related to referred pain.

CT Cream has been used for tennis elbow for quite some time with varying results. I wonder if the reason why results vary so much is because people are failing to apply it to the seat of the pain rather than where its referred to. I know there’s some active ingredients in CT Cream as my Dad has currently nicked it for his inflamed back muscles. He says it works faster than the Chinese Baume that we got from Paris. [Just a side note, why can’t I get any products from the UK that work? LOL]

CT Cream has got a natural anti-inflammatory called “arnica” in an extract form. Interestingly enough if you take ‘arnica’ in large amounts it is toxic and produces some rather nasty side effects including internal bleeding and gastroenteritis. In smaller amounts apparently its thought to have anti inflammatory affects and assists healing by aiding the transport of blood and fluid accumulations of blood capillaries in the subcutis layer; the part of the skin responsible for insulation and storing nutrients. A different mix of the plant is used by sportsmen and women; tennis players for example and I remember it being used to treat bruised knees.

However, arnica is a popular homoeopathic remedy and as such there’s absolutely no clinical proof it works any more than a placebo. Yet, I have to agree there’s no long term improvement but when the cream is applied we both feel better within 10 minutes despite suffering from completely separate conditions. It needs to be said that my Dad doesn’t even know what arnica is and even if he did, he wouldn’t care less. So, I’m in a bit of a quandary as the science says it doesn’t work, but I am seeing some short term results.

Will I be buying some more CT Cream? Yes, now I know where to rub it in for best results – Not the wrists and arms as the instructions say.

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