Have you ever just touched someone and have them jump and scream out in pain? Have you ever had someone just touch you feather soft but to you it felt as though they hit you with a 50 pound sledge hammer? Have you ever had a sharp electrical stabbing pain come out of no where? This is everyday life of those with a spinal cord injury. Some days the pain isn’t so bad but other tones it can be debilitating. This is known as neurogenic or neuropathic pain. Normal nerve transmission to the brain is misunderstood by the brain so it creates the sensation of pain at or below the level of injury. This pain can be felt even in areas where there is no sensation at all. Even though the body part may not actually be painful the sensation remains that there is pain. This pain is real, it is chronic , may start days or weeks after the injury.
Neuropathic pain is one of the hardest forms of pain to treat. There is the usual anti seizure medications, these can cause dizziness and tiredness. Then there are the narcotic pain meds and well, with the opioid epidemic this is also an issue in spinal cord injuries. Antidepressants have been known to help some people. Some have found relief from acupuncture, exercise, hypnosis, biofeedback, nerve blocks and even marijuana. Ok I know marijuana but the medical use is only just beginning to come to light. I am not condoning or condemning the use it is a personal decision.
We all know that Britten suffers from nerve pain on a daily basis. His left arm that is completely paralyzed has some of the worst nerve pains, his left should also and the worst is his middle upper back. He cannot even handle a feather light touch. This makes showering a challenge or even assisting with putting on a shirt. Look at the American Chronic Pain Association, North American Chronic Pain Association, these are just 2 of many sources of information on chronic pain. As always talk to your doctor and check out Brittens Race to Recovery Page here on FB. #disabilityawareness #handicap #disability #servicedog #family #wheelchair #spinalcordinjury #family #caregiver