The shaman I am working with journeyed to the spirit of fibromyalgia recently as we wanted to find out how I could be helped and what is going on on a metaphysical level with fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia is a disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues. Researchers believe that fibromyalgia amplifies painful sensations by affecting the way your brain processes pain signals. Basically, it feels like hot acid burning all over my body 24/7 brought on by many theories circulating – trauma, stress, infection.
The shaman journeyed into another realm of existence and said he saw a castle, a castle with traps all around it and a draw bridge. Inside the castle the shaman found a man wrapped totally and suffocating in bandages; he was wrapped in total fear. ABSOLUTE FEAR.
The man would not reveal anything. The only way to get through to him was to surround him with love, shower him with love. With that, the bandages started to unravel themselves. That’s all he found out…..
I want to write, I want to write so badly, but I have gotten caught up in other things.. I’m in the middle of writing a large update post and hope to finish it soon.
I just want to commit suicide.
My period has come. It was a nasty nasty build up. The pain is abundantly immense. Fibromyalgia is flaring up, I feel delirious, I am tired, I am drained, I feel sick, I feel dead, I feel numb, I feel claustrophobic, I feel unstable, I feel angry, I feel sad, I feel nothing, I feel everything, I feel guilty for not being able to appreciate things, the main person in my life and having food, shelter and warmth. I feel shaky. I am screeching inside, on the outside silent. I feel suppressed. I feel scared. I feel damaged. I feel on edge. I feel terror. I feel paralysed by fear.
I am confused. The planet. Myself. All is confusion. Dazed. Destroyed. Pain. Pain. Pain.
“How does your brain know when you feel pain? How does it know the difference between the soft touch of a feather and a needle prick? And, how does that information get to your body in time to respond? How does acute pain become chronic pain? These are not simple answers, but with a little explanation about how the nervous system works, you should be able to understand the basics.
What the Nervous System Does Your nervous system is made up of two main parts: the brain and the spinal cord, which combine to form the central nervous system; and the sensory and motor nerves, which form the peripheral nervous system. The names make it easy to picture: the brain and spinal cord are the hubs, while the sensory and motor nerves stretch out to provide access to all areas of the body.
Put simply, sensory nerves send impulses about what is happening in our environment to the brain via the spinal cord. The brain sends information back to the motor nerves, which help us perform actions. It’s like having a very complicated inbox and outbox for everything.
The Role of Nerves in Identifying Pain Sensations Let’s say you step on a rock. How does a sensory nerve in the peripheral nervous system know this is any different than something like a soft toy? Different sensory nerve fibers respond to different things and produce different chemical responses which determine how sensations are interpreted. Some nerves send signals associated with light touch, while others respond to deep pressure.
Special pain receptors called nociceptors activate whenever there has been an injury, or even a potential injury, such as breaking the skin or causing a large indentation.1 Even if the rock does not break your skin, the tissues in your foot become compressed enough to cause the nociceptors to fire off a response. Now, an impulse is heading through the nerve into the spinal cord, and eventually all the way to your brain. This happens within fractions of a second.
The Role of the Spinal Cord in Pain Response Your spinal cord is a complex array of bundles of nerves, transmitting all kinds of signals to and from the brain at any given time. It is a lot like a freeway for sensory and motor impulses. But your spinal cord does more than act as a message center: it can make some basic decisions on its own. These “decisions” are called reflexes.
An area of the spinal cord called the dorsal horn acts as an information hub, simultaneously directing impulses to the brain and back down the spinal cord to the area of injury. The brain does not have to tell your foot to move away from the rock because the dorsal horn has already sent that message. If your brain is the body’s CEO, then the spinal cord is middle management.
The Role of the Brain in Interpreting Pain Even though the spinal reflex takes place at the dorsal horn, the pain signal continues to the brain. This is because pain involves more than a simple stimulus and response. Simply taking your foot off the rock does not solve all of your problems. No matter how mild the damage, the tissues in your foot still need to be healed. In addition, your brain needs to make sense of what has happened. Pain gets cataloged in your brain’s library, and emotions become associated with stepping on that rock.
When the pain signal reaches the brain it goes to the thalamus, which directs it to a few different areas for interpretations. A few areas in the cortex figure out where the pain came from and compare it to other kinds of pain with which is it familiar. Was it sharp? Did it hurt more than stepping on a tack? Have you ever stepped on a rock before, and if so was it better or worse?
Signals are also sent from the thalamus to the limbic system, which is the emotional center of the brain. Ever wonder why some pain makes you cry? The limbic system decides. Feelings are associated with every sensation you encounter, and each feeling generates a response. Your heart rate may increase, and you may break out into a sweat. All because of a rock underfoot.
Other Factors That Influence Pain Response While it may seem simple, the process of detecting pain is complicated by the fact that it is not a one-way system. It isn’t even a two-way system. Pain is more than just cause and effect. It is affected by everything else that is going on in the nervous system. Your mood, your past experiences, and your expectations can all change the way pain is interpreted at any given time. How is that for confusing?
If you step on that rock after you have a fight with your wife, your response may be very different than it would if you had just won the lottery. Your feelings about the experience may be tainted if the last time you stepped on a rock, your foot became infected. If you stepped on a rock once before and nothing terrible happened to you, you may recover more quickly. You can see how different emotions and histories can determine your response to pain. In fact, there is a strong link between depression and chronic pain.
When Acute Pain Becomes Chronic In this scenario, after your foot healed, the pain sensations would stop. This is because the nociceptors no longer detect any tissue damage or potential injury. This is called acute pain. Acute pain does not persist after the initial injury has healed.
Sometimes, however, pain receptors continue to fire. This can be caused by a disease or condition that continuously causes damage. With arthritis, for example, the joint is in a constant state of disrepair, causing pain signals to travel to the brain with little downtime. Sometimes, even in the absence of tissue damage, nociceptors continue to fire.1 There may no longer be a physical cause of pain, but the pain response is the same. This makes chronic pain difficult to pin down and even more difficult to treat.”
Tomorrow I am going to try cryotherapy in the local city for my chronic pain caused by the condition fibromyalgia. What have I got to loose? Let’s see what happens. My dear friend is paying for me to have this treatment on his birthday, blessed.
“Overview Cryotherapy, which literally means “cold therapy,” is a technique where the body is exposed to extremely cold temperatures for several minutes.
Cryotherapy can be delivered to just one area, or you can opt for whole-body cryotherapy. Localized cryotherapy can be administered in a number of ways, including through ice packs, ice massage, coolant sprays, ice baths, and even through probes administered into tissue.
The theory for whole-body cryotherapy (WBC) is that by immersing the body in extremely cold air for several minutes, you could receive a number of health benefits. The individual will stand in an enclosed chamber or a small enclosure that surrounds their body but has an opening for their head at the top. The enclosure will drop to between negative 200–300°F. They’ll stay in the ultra-low temperature air for between two and four minutes.
You can get benefits from just one session of cryotherapy, but it’s most effective when used regularly. Some athletes use cryotherapy twice a day. Others will go daily for 10 days and then once a month afterwards.
Benefits of cryotherapy
Reduces migraine symptoms Cryotherapy can help treat migraines by cooling and numbing nerves in the neck area. One study foundTrusted Source that applying a neck wrap containing two frozen ice packs to the carotid arteries in the neck significantly reduced migraine pain in those tested. It’s thought that this works by cooling the blood passing through intracranial vessels. The carotid arteries are close to the skin’s surface and accessible.
Numbs nerve irritation Many athletes have been using cryotherapy to treat injuries for years, and one of the reasons why is that it can numb pain. The cold can actually numb an irritated nerve. Doctors will treat the affected area with a small probe inserted into the nearby tissue. This can help treat pinched nerves or neuromas, chronic pain, or even acute injuries.
Helps treat mood disorders The ultra-cold temperatures in whole-body cryotherapy can cause physiological hormonal responses. This includes the release of adrenaline, noradrenaline, and endorphins. This can have a positive effect on those experiencing mood disorders like anxiety and depression. One study foundTrusted Source that whole-body cryotherapy was actually effective in short-term treatment for both.
Reduces arthritic pain Localized cryotherapy treatment isn’t the only thing that’s effective at treating serious conditions; one study foundTrusted Source that whole-body cryotherapy significantly reduced pain in people with arthritis. They found that the treatment was well-tolerated. It also allowed for more aggressive physiotherapy and occupational therapy as a result. This ultimately made rehabilitation programs more effective.
May help treat low-risk tumors Targeted, localized cryotherapy can be used as a cancer treatment. In this context, it’s called “cryosurgery.” It works by freezing cancer cells and surrounding them with ice crystals. It’s currently being used to treat some low-risk tumors for certain types of cancer, including prostate cancer.
May help prevent dementia and Alzheimer’s disease While more research is needed to evaluate the effectiveness of this strategy, it’s theorized that whole-body cryotherapy could help prevent Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia. It’s thought thatTrusted Source this may be an effective treatment because the anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory effects of cryotherapy could help combat the inflammatory and oxidative stress responses that occur with Alzheimer’s.
Treats atopic dermatitis and other skin conditions Atopic dermatitis is a chronic inflammatory skin disease with signature symptoms of dry and itchy skin. Because cryotherapy can improve antioxidant levelsTrusted Source in the blood and can simultaneously reduce inflammation, it makes sense that both localized and whole-body cryotherapy can help treat atopic dermatitis. Another study (in mice) examined its effect for acne, targeting the sebaceous glands.
Risks and side effects The most common side effects of any type of cryotherapy are numbness, tingling, redness, and irritation of the skin. These side effects are almost always temporary. Make an appointment with your doctor if they don’t resolve within 24 hours.
You should never use cryotherapy for longer than is recommended for the method of therapy you’re using. For whole body cryotherapy, this would be more than four minutes. If you’re using an ice pack or ice bath at home, you should never apply ice to the area for more than 20 minutes. Wrap ice packs in a towel so you don’t damage your skin.
Those with diabetes or any conditions that affect their nerves should not use cryotherapy. They may be unable to fully feel its effect, which could lead to further nerve damage.
Tips and guidelines for cryotherapy If you have any conditions you want to treat with cryotherapy, make sure you discuss them with the person assisting with or administering your treatment. It’s always a good idea to consult your doctor before using any type of therapy.
If receiving whole body cryotherapy, wear dry, loose-fitting clothing. Bring socks and gloves to protect from frostbite. During therapy, move around if possible to keep your blood flowing.
If you’re getting cryosurgery, your doctor will discuss specific preparations with you beforehand. This may include not eating or drinking for 12 hours beforehand.
Takeaway There is plenty of anecdotal evidence and some research supporting the claims that cryotherapy can offer health benefits, but whole body cryotherapy is still being researched. Because it’s still being researched, talk to your doctor or healthcare provider to assess whether it’s right for you.”