Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Trial By Fire The Movie - A Charles Mattocks Film



In a previous post titled, If Only...,  I spoke of desires of the chronic pain sufferers soul. One of the "if only's" was for those suffering with chronic pain to have the opportunity to have their pain seen by those that aren't able to comprehend how it feels, how it impacts every moment of every day and every night, what it does to a person’s life, how it takes every aspect of what one use to be and leaves one’s life and soul shredded, all the while striving and searching to find some sort of relief from the unending, horrendous nightmare of the disease called chronic pain. Today I was informed of this desire to have others be able to understand a part of this pain through an awesome movie that will be aired on PBS! (See dates and time below)!

This is what I was tweeted by another pain sufferer that has passionately done all she could, among so many others, in so many ways, to help push this movement forward!
@KimWarden1465 @sherikay823  So excited @CMattocks1 film trialbyfiremovie.com

airs on PBS
11/27 Sun 8pm
11/28 Mon 10 am
Trial By Fire Movie (click link to be directed to the website for more information)!


     


Another "If only" shared was for those who aren’t capable of comprehending what it is like to live with chronic pain to be able to have a glimpse of the struggle of those dealing with the losses and the grieving it causes. (Click the underlined words to be directed to an article about losses and grieving). If only others could see what it takes to endure this type of life and to find the strength it takes to rebuild one’s life as much as able, to integrate living with this horrid disease, leaving behind dreams and desires of a life now lost to horrendous chronic pain!


If only those people, who aren’t able to understand could possibly perceive the pain that is hidden beneath the surface, maybe then they would comprehend. Maybe then those suffering would not be ignored, glossed over, cut off and dismissed. Maybe then many would not feel so utterly isolated from those that they love and desire to be acknowledged from where they are. Not sympathy, no, that's not wanted. Just empathy...an understanding of what it's like and where ones hearts is. An understanding without being judged for something ones body doesn't allow them to fight. We have fought though. Always will...but, this neurological pain disease fights back and leaves one gripping for what life one has left after being literally shredded to pieces and burned, but not allowed to die. We choose to keep living! That in itself is to be respected!

Click here to rent Trial By Fire on Vimeo


Thank you Charles Mattocks for all you have done to bring this documentary before the general 
public! Many of our "If Only's" may be understood! 
Read more about this movie that is starting a movement by clicking this link:

Thursday, May 12, 2016

If Only...



If Only

If only those suffering with chronic pain had the opportunity to have their pain seen by those that aren't able to comprehend how it feels, how it impacts every moment of every day and every night, what it does to a person’s life, how it takes every aspect of what one use to be and leaves one’s life and soul shredded, searching to find some sort of relief from the unending, horrendous nightmare of the disease called chronic pain.

If only those that aren’t capable of comprehending what it is like to live with chronic pain could glimpse the struggle of those dealing with the losses and the grieving . If only others could see what it takes to endure this type of life and to find the strength it takes to rebuild one’s life to integrate living with this horrid disease.

If only those people, who aren’t able to understand could possibly perceive the pain that is hidden beneath the surface, maybe then they would comprehend. Maybe then those suffering would not be ignored, glossed over, cut off and dismissed.

My “If only” had high hopes when I heard that one of my choice news reporters, Anderson Cooper who “goes beyond the headlines to tell stories from many points of view, so you can make up your own mind about the news,” was doing a story on “Prescription Addiction-Made in the USA” on Anderson Cooper 360. I truly expected more of what it is like to live with chronic pain to be a part of this report.

I was pleased that a chronic pain person, Kay Sanford, was included in the audience and had been able to share part of her story, which included much of what many suffering with chronic pain seek, healthy ways to find relief from living in a body trapped in unrelenting pain. On behalf of all chronic pain sufferers I want to say, thank you, Kay Sanford, for doing what you had to do to get there to share your story! All of us know what it takes to go somewhere!  
 

I do think she had a lot more to share though! Anderson had asked, “What would you say to patients like this?” And Dr. Drew stated, “I would say, ‘good, fantastic!’  I would say in this situation no one would dream of interfering with her treatment.  But that is a very tiny minority.”

I was left completely speechless! Does he actually believe what he said? Dr. Drew actually stated, “…that is a very tiny minority.”  Is he really not aware of the statistics in the
National Institutes of Health Pathways to Prevention Workshop: The Role of Opioids in the Treatment of Chronic Pain?

 Image result for NIH images
Among the many other subjects covered, this report states that there are 100 million chronic pain sufferers in America. Of those, 25 million suffer with moderate to severe chronic pain. 
This report also states that 2% abuse their prescribed narcotics! There is no ignoring this incredibly distressing reality. I definitely do not want to come off as ignoring all those suffering addiction, nor those that die every day overdosing!  Not only is addiction a horrifying disease that has many horrible affects on the sufferer, it also has appalling ripple effects on all the families and friends it affects. As far as I am concerned something needs to be done to combat this! There is no way anyone can overlook that at all!

 What about the 98%?  Kay Sanford represented the 98% of us using our prescribed opioids appropriately. And Dr. Drew stated she was part of “a very tiny minority.”

There are 98% of these sufferers that are using their prescribed medications APPROPRIATELY! Medications, that by the way, are needed to try and live somewhat of a functional life…a life shredded to pieces by chronic pain! A life many describe as a "life of hell!" Many cannot comprehend such a life! It can be hard enough for those living with unending, all encompassing, overwhelming moderate to severe chronic pain to even comprehend the magnitude of such a reality!
I don’t know what else Kay Sanford tried to share when she was talked over, but being disregarded (not that it was intended, I don’t believe it was, I really don’t know) is representative as to how many chronic pain sufferers are treated. I do know the subject of the show was about addiction. However, interweaved in this entire story are those of us, the 98% that get demeaned and degraded for just having the disease of chronic pain and having to use opioids.

None of us, 100% of all of us with chronic pain, should be discriminated against at all for having to deal with this horrific disease. Nor should we be humiliated for having to utilize a medication that is prescribed by ones physician to live a life that is as functional as possible. The majority of physicians are not the “drug doctors” many say when discussing opioid use. That is a whole different subject, yes another sordid problem, but again, the majority should not be scandalized for the minority!
Perhaps, since Anderson Cooper has done this report on addiction, maybe someday soon, after thorough and detailed research on what the DEA and the CDC has already done, (with more being put into place) and how it has already negatively affected the lives of many chronic pain sufferers trying to maintain and obtain treatment, we will have someone give a voice to those suffering with chronic pain and the multiple affects on our physical, emotional, financial, relational and social side effects of what we deal with
.
If only all chronic pain was made visible so others can see the horror of this disease.

If only Anderson Cooper 360 could accurately report on this. Then Dr. Drew would realize that people like Kay Sanford are not, “…a very tiny minority.” 
  
If only…

Monday, April 25, 2016

Naloxone - For All Opioid Overdoses


Image result for naloxone


Naloxone -For All Opioid Overdoses

My daughter emailed me this today,

"Mom, did you see that they have an overdose reversal med? Just thinking about a little boy that likes spending time at grandmas. I thought it would be good to have one of these around. You are very careful, but you never know. Want me to get one?"
Of course I said yes! One can never be too safe!

This was the link included in the email from Walgreen:

I am attempting to get a link from Walgreens so you can buy Naloxone from a link I can provide. I have not heard back from them as of yet. Check back, or better yet, sign up to receive emails when I put out a new blog post!

It is my understanding Naloxone is also available at not only Walgreens, but also, CVS/pharmacy.




Image result for walgreen images

Naloxone is a drug used to treat respiratory depression caused by opioids. Opioids produce their effects by acting on opioid receptors in the brain and nervous system. Naloxone works by blocking these opioid receptors, thus stopping opioids from acting on them. This reverses the effects of the opioid and has proven to save many lives of those found overdosed by inappropriately using the medication. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naloxone)


Here is more information if you want to be informed further: Naloxone Information from the NIH Medlineplus


This is how it works:
 Image result for naloxone works images   











This is how it is done:

 

The Sad Thing 


Honestly, I did not even think I needed one. I have my meds in a safe, bolted to the wall, except my weekly pill dispenser. "Except"...  I keep that in a high up place where the grandkid can’t get to and I move it to my safe when we have many visitors. I’m really glad my daughter emailed that to me. For I don’t know if I would have thought to get one for him, or anyone else I may come across that may need to be treated.  I thought I was being safe!


Anyways I just thought I'd pass the info. along for any of you that may have never considered one was necessary, like me. I take my meds responsibly.  However, somehow I overlooked one of the most important little people in my life, my grandson. All little kids like to explore and get into things. It only takes a split second. It might all be right there in front of them and we may not even know it!
"Poison centers receive calls every day about young children getting into medicines without adult supervision; that's why we encourage all parents and caregivers to follow these simple steps to ensure their child's safety."

Preventing Accidental Overdoses with Children



Image result for child with drugs images
Although I have always been the type of person to know where a little kid is at all times when they are over.  They call them “helicopter moms” now days. I just always felt they needed to be in the line of sight or you can at least hear them if around the corner in another room. 


When we have dangerous medications in our homes we need to take all precautions available to be sure accidents don't happen and drastically change your life forever. It doesn’t matter if you are a helicopter mom or grandma, or a more relaxed one, deadly accidents happen to all of us no matter how attentive we think we are!

Children Being Accidentally Poisoned!

Kids are frequently accidentally poisoned when they come upon drugs while exploring and put them in their mouths. Where as teenagers will seek out drugs to get high and aren't aware of what "just one more" can do to you, or what the toxic level to where they will compromise their respiration and die. They are not aware of what having something alcoholic to drink with it can do. They see many others do it and think they can tolerate it as well, and even purposely taking a higher quantity to be cool or try for a higher high, with deadly effects! I will discuss teens and opioid abuse as a part of my next blog post. 


“500,000 calls per year related to young children accidentally ingesting medications are received by the US Poison Control Center. This works out to one call every minute of every day.”


“In 2012, 64,000 kids were treated in emergency rooms for medicine poisoning; that's one child every eight minutes, according to a new report from Safe Kids.  The report, which is based on data from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Poison Control Centers, sheds light on this entirely preventable problem, including where children are most likely to be exposed to potentially deadly medicines.” The article continued by stating that:

-parents' and grandparents' medications cause most children drug poisonings.

-in three out of four cases of child drug poisonings, the medication belonged to a parent (39 percent of cases) or grandparent (38 percent of cases).

-the fact that grandparents' medication is due to the increase of many grandchildren living with the grandparents, grandparents living with their adult children, as well as 1 in 8 grandkids are cared for by their grand children.

-older adults are among the most medicated populations, the average adult aged 65 and older taking 28 prescriptions per year, (http://kff.org/other/state-indicator/retail-rx-drugs-by-age/) this drastically increases children's danger of accidental drug overdose.

-taking medications is so frequently in many homes that many “become complacent, neglecting to regard their pills as potential killers. Adding to the problem, many seniors take medications multiple times a day and purposely keep them in easy-to-access, prominent locations so they don't forget a dose. The report (http://www.safekids.org/med_report_2014) revealed that among grandparents who take care of their grandkids every day:

-28% keep their medicines in easy-open containers or bottles without a child-resistant cap

-42% of those who use easy-open containers also keep their medicine on a bathroom or kitchen sink, counter, table, or shelf

-12 % keep prescription medications on a nightstand or dresser

This is incredibly frightening to me! It takes a split second for a child to snatch a pill out of one of those containers, off a counter top, table, or off the floor and swallow it. Sadly, that is frequently all it takes to cause life-threatening, and sometimes fatal, reactions in their small bodies. (Information obtained from: http://www.webmd.com/children/news/20111213/accidental-drug-overdoses-on-rise-among-kids &http://www.safekids.org/med_report_2014)


"Poison centers receive calls every day about young children getting into medicines without adult supervision; that's why we encourage all parents and caregivers to follow these simple steps to ensure their child's safety
Image result for safe places for drug storage images

Those steps include:
  • Put all medications and vitamins in a place children can’t reach.
  • Put medicines and vitamins away every time you use them. Never leave them out on a kitchen counter or at a sick child’s bedside, even if you have to give the medicine again in a few hours.
  • Listen for the click to make sure the safety cap on medicines is locked.
  • Teach children about medicine safety. Never tell children that medicine is candy to get them to take it.
  • Tell guests about medicine safety. Ask house guests and visitors to keep purses, bags, and coats that have medicines in them up and away and out of sight when they are visiting.
  • Be prepared in case of emergency. Program the poison control phone number into home and cell phones (800-222-1222).
 Image result for poison control center images'

I would like to add:
  • Buy a safe that you can bolt to the wall in a closet and keep your medications locked in that. They may be pricey, however there is no price you can put on safety! Maybe check on Craigslist or wait for a sale at a store in your area! The picture is a less expensive one, but is not able to be bolted to a floor.Harbor Freight also has good deals on various sizes! You can click the link for their advertisement and also a 20% off coupon.Harbor Freight Safes.

It’s About Prevention!


Most people have sadly had their lives touched by a loved one that has had a drug problem. There are many stories out there of overdoses that have happened accidentally and purposely because of many different situations. 

I personally don't plan playing a role in any one of those stories! I hope you can reread the lists above of what you can do to help prevent overdoses!

I am glad my daughter emailed offering to buy that for me! 
Image result for safe places for drug storage images



My next blog post will take a more in-depth look at drug abuse and opioids.



Disclaimer: One of the most important things I’ve learned about chronic pain is there is a wide variety of diseases and spectrum of disability among the readers here. Some of us lead pretty normal lives in spite of the horrid pain, fatigue and other symptoms, and some of us have symptoms so severe that we can’t get out of the bed, much less clean a toilet. Given that spectrum, I try to have a variety articles that apply to many. So, in reading these, I ask that you apply the tips you can safely use based on your abilities. Also, please note that any information in this blog is not intended for medical advice. Please check with your physician when attempting any exercises, diets or other activities to be sure it is safe for your physical issues.


Do you have a comment, idea or suggestion?  I’d love to hear it! Share in the comments below!