Pain management: Coping with chronic conditions during the festive period

Christmas demands an increase in physical and social activity from decorating to planning, shopping, cooking, and visiting loved ones. While this is an enjoyable time of year, for those living with a chronic health condition, it can become very challenging making even the simplest of chores difficult.

If that’s you, then this blog is for you! Below we have outlined some useful tips to help make Christmas more enjoyable.

Start early

Time flies. Before you know it, you have too much to do and too little time. This can mean over-exerting yourself to catch up, causing undue stress. This can take a toll on your body and exacerbate your pain. If you start your day earlier and have more time to work through your to-do list then you’ll be able to enjoy the festivities in a more leisurely fashion.

Take regular breaks

Even though this time of year is about seeing family and spending time with others, don’t forget to consider what you can let go of for this year. Ask someone to help share the load and see where you can give yourself some free time. Even if it’s sitting somewhere comfortable for a short while, you’ll feel the benefits in the long run!

Compromise where possible

Dr Farrah Ayob, a specialist consultant from Mamedica, has witnessed first-hand the improvements medical cannabis has on her patients: “Patients who have has a significant ski injury, paraplegia and all that sort of complex pain issues. Cannabis is really helpful for them. Not only for their pain but also for their wellbeing and mood.”

Listen to your body

Be kind to yourself. If you’re feeling tired, rest. If you need help with something, ask for it. Staying tuned with our bodies is essential to taking care of yourself.

Follow your doctor’s orders

If you’re in the care of a pain doctor, remember to stay on track with your prescribed medications and treatment schedules. Skipping parts of your pain management regimen can diminish the progress you make, causing you more discomfort.

Hear from one of our patients, Kevin Stephens, who has been using Mamedica’s services to treat his knee injury. Having lived with the condition for over a decade, Kevin has seen a huge impact on his daily life. This is especially heightened at Christmas. He says:

“Normally, I’d like to spend time with my family and kids but I have to be conscious of my knee. It prevents me from engaging in physical activity and if I over-exert myself I will be suffering. The cold also triggers pain which can be difficult.”

Since using medical cannabis, Kevin discusses the life-changing effects it had on his life, enabling him able to enjoy Christmas this year unlike previous!

“I’m able to sleep through the night now which means I wake up feeling refreshed. I’m also feeling generally more positive from a mental perspective because I am not in so much pain. I’ve also noticed I can do things that I couldn’t previously do, small things like going for walks with my kids or playing with them.”

Our very own pain specialist, Dr Farrah Ayob, shares how her medical experience in Canada enlightened her to use cannabis as a tool for complex pain management.

“Patients who have significant ski injury, paraplegia and all that sort of complex pain issues. Cannabis is really helpful for them. Not only for their pain but also for their wellbeing and mood.

“I see about 20 to 30 patients a week. More than 95% of my patients find they are satisfied with their progress for managing their pain compared to conventional medicines. They have guidance from me on how to use cannabis. We monitor them – and we see the difference in them. They feel a lot more reassured that all the anxiety with using grey-market cannabis is gone.”

As Christmas approaches, you might be planning on self-medicating to manage your pain. In fact, millions of people are doing the same. That’s why we’ve spoken to thousands of Brits to understand the scale of pain across the country – and what exactly we can do to help. Keep in touch via our website and social platforms as all will be revealed in our report in the new year!

Click here to learn how Mamedica can help.