“I hate people who tell me I just need to get a good night’s sleep. They really don’t get it.”
Painsomnia. Chronic pain + insomnia.
It’s when you can’t sleep because of the pain.
Sometimes it’s back pain, or neck pain, or pain from your fibromyalgia, or rheumatoid arthritis. Or severe migraine or tension headaches.
Whatever’s causing your pain, You. Cannot. Sleep.
You try to go to bed at a “sensible” time because everyone says that’s what you should do. (Even though they, themselves, actually don’t have chronic pain and don’t really know what your life is like.)
A couple hours later, you try the easy stuff. Hot shower. Ibuprofen. Cold packs. Hot packs. Chocolate.
While you’re waiting, and hoping, you creep out of your bedroom so you don’t wake anyone up. You try to distract yourself, maybe with your phone, or your computer, or maybe even meditation. You don’t read a book, because that’s not distracting enough.
A couple hours later, you give in and try the heavy-duty last-resort stuff, like prescription muscle relaxers that make you woozy and that leftover pain medication from your husband’s dental surgery last year.
Now it’s the wee hours. You crawl back into bed. Before long, the sky will lighten.
Will this be a good day, finally?
Painsomnia takes your days, and really, your life, away from you.
Brain fog from lack of sleep – plus chronic pain that doesn’t let up – makes it hard to even put your thoughts together. Stuff you could normally do without thinking, like texting your mom, suddenly feels like talking in a foreign language. Fixing a quick snack for the kids, or folding your laundry, feels like climbing Mount Everest.
Sometimes it even means you don’t recognize yourself. That person who snaps at someone she loves, bursts into tears because she forgot to get more dog food…that’s not really you.
Here’s what you should know about chronic pain:
- It’s important to treat it quickly. That’s when the most treatment options are available to you.
- Untreated, it can get worse. As it gets worse, you have fewer and fewer treatment options.
- It can cause new pain, elsewhere in your body, as you try to avoid triggering more pain by changing how you move
- Most pain – even chronic pain – can be treated without surgery.
- Severe, or long-lasting, pain isn’t automatically hard to treat. Many kinds of severe or long-lasting pain can actually be helped fairly quickly.
Please don’t suffer alone, without help. We’re here to work with you on a pain relief plan that gives you your nights — your life, really — back.