We (north Americans) are incredibly fortunate to be living in societies where medicare is readily accessible (to most) and our technological advances have proven great opportunities for the suffering to live better, with an enhanced quality of life. However, medications for chronic non-terminal illnesses, in my opinion, can be proven to be detrimental to society's well being IN GENERAL (maybe this does help you, and for that I am truly happy; but I thought they helped me too...)
Hello, my name is Geneva Al-Kaptan. I am a 22 year old undergraduate psychology student. After a realization of the "self", I am finally coming out of mental illness, prescription drug addiction and fighting through chronic pelvic pain, naturally.
As a teenager, a swirl of medical conditions (and morbid obesity) caused me to develop severe depression and chronic pelvic pain. What are the cure to these extremely prevalent issues in our society? Addictive substances, sure; but legal ones would include prescription medications that are highly addictive such as narcotic medications, analgesic medications, stimulant medications, anti-depressant/anxiolytic (benzo) etc.
I have been addicted to narcotic and analgesic medications for 7 years: up until I realized that my mind was more powerful than a handful of pills that ruled my entire life. Let me farther explain:
These medications became my crutch. I felt like I could not live without Lyrica, Nortriptyline, Tramadol; at my worst, Dillaudid, Oxycontin, Morphine (which I have overdosed on). The cure to unexplained pain is to "take more".
During the end of 2017, I decided to let go of cigarettes, and naturally, fell upon a vegan diet which helped me cure my restrictive eating disorder, and soon after that... I came upon a spiritual awakening. Naturally, I am not a fearful, shy, anxious, angry, irritated person. With background in neuroscience and cognitive psychology, I started to research more upon chronic pain and the effects of these medications and realized that indeed, these drugs were clouding my judgment of self, ruining my confidence, and cognitive abilities in school!
Let's start with self efficacy.
What is it? Bandura described this as a personal judgement of the self, how well you think you can perform throughout your life or in said tasks, your confidence, etc. The way you view yourself will dictate how well you will do FOR yourself. Receiving a diagnosis of chronic pain is never easy; pair that with low self efficacy and you got yourself a recipe for mood disorders and drug addictions. If you view yourself as "never being able to do/cope", that is exactly what will happen.
My advice to you, fellow readers, is to begin realizing that all those negative affects ("I can't do this", "I am broken", "My life is ruined") will put you in a worse place and INDEED WILL MAKE YOUR PAIN WORSE.
Through some research, it is a known fact that some cognitive abilities such as attention and focus are reduced when someone suffers from chronic pain. However, neuropathic/chronic pain that are neural based have top down implications: meaning that indeed, feelings, perceptions, and thoughts will influence the intensity of the pain that you feel.
In short, if you have neuropathic pain or any pain for that matter, negative thoughts, feelings and emotions have the ability to indeed increase the intensity of the pain. Increasing the intensity of the pain you feel will only make you more disabled and will make you believe that you are dependent on medications.
I see so many older women and men who take over 20 pills a day and don't believe they can function off of them when in reality, they're barely functioning because of them!
MY FRIENDS THIS IS NOT THE CURE.
YOU ARE WORTHY AND DESERVING OF HEALING
Believe that you are beyond this pain; dissociate from it. You are not broken, sad, depressed, bipolar, crazy, or disabled. We need to rewire the way we think about ourselves and increase our self efficacy, see our worth, and know that we can get through these illnesses in more effective ways. You are worthy and deserving of healing.
So, through back propagation (rewiring my view of world and self/ schema's) I became a more confident person, my depression slowly went away, and I started to believe that I was worthy and deserving of healing.
So, what are my tips and what has helped me?
Guided Meditations (youtube) look for some with "positive affirmations" this will aid in raising your view of the world and self.
don't be intimidated by meditation, it truly is a miracle.
EXERCISE: RAISE THE PROPER NEUROTRANSMITTERS IN YOUR BRAIN NATURALLY AND REGULATE YOUR HORMONES. Nuff' said.
What you eat will dictate how you feel--> msg and meat products are more likely to contribute to lower states of mind. Eat to live, eat with intuition, and eat to meet your nutrient goals: OMEGA 3 (flaxseeds and walnuts are my fav) are incredibly important for neural plasticity.