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Pain In The Neck June 23, 2012

Posted by Jim Berkin in General.
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If I could do this, I’d be a lot better off, believe me.

For the past few days it’s felt like a knife has been sticking out of my neck & shoulder. I must have blown out a neck disc (again) and I have absolutely no idea how it happened. I can only guess that I must have slept on it funny, although I don’t remember feeling anything until the middle of the day.

I did this to myself 8-9 years ago along my C5 nerve – popped out a disc to the point where pain shot down to the tip of my left middle finger.  The doc told me all I could do was physical therapy combined with bombarding myself with Ibuprofin.  I started with 3 doses per day of 3 tablets after being assured by the doc that this was not overdoing it. I wanted to avoid a prescription pain killer that might (a) knock me out or (b) create a dependency that would turn me into 1970s era Jerry Lewis at @3:20AM on the telethon going through withdrawal.  After a couple of weeks, I was mostly better. I tapered off the ibuprofin dosage until I was off them completely after another week or so. That was a relief in more ways than one, since all sorts of back problems run in my family and relatives of mine have needed repeated surgeries to deal with them, something I would very much like to avoid as I get older & continue to fall apart.

If only it were “Low T.” I keep seeing those stupid ads on televsion & I wonder what the long term effects of middle age guys bombarding themselves with testosterone will be…. perhaps this?

This time, the pain shoots into my right shoulder. So, I was doing my normal stretches I learned in physical therapy along with the Ibuprofin dose (3 doses per day of two tablets this time), tempered with some generic Zantac so that I don’t eat a hole in my oh-so-sensitive stomach….

Jesus, am I ever a basket case. If I were a horse, they’d shoot me.

Today is the first day in a while where I can actually sit here & type a decent amount – a good thing if I want to continue work on the second Wagstaff mystery novel in the series as well as edit my older kid’s scifi adventure book to put up on Amazon as well (I’m aiming for late fall on that one, folks!).

In searching around the internet, however, I found something to pass along to any fellow sufferers out there – Some theories on muscle stretching are working for me, especially after massaging some Icy Hot into the exact spot on my neck where I assume C6 has gone awry – check out this video:

See that? Jean-Luc Picard gets his workout on a Hawaiian beach. You’d think those Borg implants would fix themselves, but no dice.

Working my chest & shoulders before moving on to neck stretches made a noticeable difference. Some of the moves in the video, however, especially some of the more intense neck rotations, would probably have me screaming – the goal would be for them not to, which is still a ways off for yours truly. I guess the long term solution will be to try to sleep on my back more as opposed to my side, but once I fall asleep, I have little control over that one.  But imitating the stuff I saw in the video has helped me, so I thought I’d pass it along.

By the way, I’ve also tried to up the protein in my diet as well as eat a banana a day for muscle repair. Not sure how much that’ll help, but it certainly won’t hurt, unless I slip on the peel.

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