I depend on my team – laypeople and professionals – to help me understand my body, abilities, circumstances, moods, and reactions. Profound understanding promotes self-appreciation – loving myself as I am. On my professional team, my primary care doc, chiropractor, massage therapist, neurologist, optometrist, physical therapist, and acupuncturist are the strongest and most important professionals for me. I’ve learned which of their skills help me, how they communicate with me, and what work I need to do to maximize their impact. This episode begins an intermittent series about the professionals on my health team, starting with Dr. Keith Puri, my chiropractor. I’ve learned much from Dr. Puri about maximizing my gross motor capabilities through good habits. I’m indebted to him. Listen in or read on.
You’re in for a treat. Amy Baxter, pediatric emergency physician, pain researcher, and device manufacturer, is the CEO and Founder of Pain Care Labs. We talked about:
- Pain is inevitable, it’s life. Unnecessary pain is wasteful and it sucks.
- Doctors’ superpower is writing prescriptions. While lots of research has been done about non-pharm pain, doctors aren’t familiar with it.
- Public policy doesn’t support non-drug solutions. It funnels people to doctors and medication.
- Attitude and attention impact pain. If you focus on life rather than pain, the pain can be more manageable. We’re in control.
- The 1-10 pain scale has limited value unless you’re evaluating what’s not working for acute pain.
- We could teach our kids about pain differently. Think, dancers and other athletes.
- While cannabis may be helpful for chronic pain, it’s not a panacea, especially for young brains.
We learned about TENS units, Buzzy, the Meissner Corpusle, the thalamus (the brains CPU/microprocessor), the Schmidt Sting Pain Scale, the IKEA bias, beta nerves and mechanoreceptors, and more. My head spins.
I think the most important lesson I’ve learned from Amy is that it’s not about the pain, it’s about what we want to do with our lives and how we manage the challenges we face that get in the way, including pain. Let’s take control. It’s the most powerful tool we have.