5 Pain Relief Tips While You Wait for a Doctors Appointment | The Health Sessions

5 Pain Relief Tips While You Wait for a Doctors Appointment

This article is written by Aaron Smith. 

Chronic pain can be debilitating, making even the simplest tasks a challenge. If you are one of the millions of people who suffer from chronic pain, you know how hard it can be to wait for a doctor’s appointment. You may be wondering what you can do to relieve the pain until your appointment.

You’re in luck—we’ve compiled five pain relief tips that should help make the wait a little easier! Let’s get started.

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12 Simple Practices that Activate Your Relaxation Response | The Health Sessions

12 Simple Practices that Activate Your Relaxation Response

This blog post contains some affiliate links to resources you may find useful, at no extra costs to you. All opinions are my own.

We all love to chill out after a tiring or stressful day. But true relaxation encompasses more than lounging on the couch with a game of Wordle. It’s not just about keeping physical activity to a minimum, real rest also means letting go of tension in your body and quieting your racing mind.

At the same time, relaxation does have to be – nor should it be – an elaborate practice you only do occasionally, by getting a massage or taking a mental health day.

Real rest refers to any activity that activates your body’s natural relaxation response. The relaxation response acts like a built-in tranquilizer: it helps your autonomic nervous system to return to a calm state after being exposed to stress.

You see, whenever your body perceives any kind of danger, it prepares itself to run away or fight back if necessary. Your sympathetic nervous system gets activated, releasing cortisol and adrenaline into your bloodstream and increasing your heart rate and blood flow to your arms and legs, so you’re ready to take action.

This fight-or-flight response worked really well when our ancestors lived among dangerous animals, but nowadays, more innocent events like deadlines at work, traffic jams and arguments with loved ones trigger the same stress response. And the problem is, these modern stressors also don’t go away as easily as wolves and snakes did – they keep lingering in the back of your mind. This stops your body’s natural relaxation response from kicking in (in time), building up to chronic stress, which in turn leads to all kinds of physical, mental and emotional health problems.

Thankfully, there are ways you can activate the relaxation response, during which your parasympathetic nervous system takes over and lets your blood pressure, heart rate, digestive functioning and hormonal levels return to normal. All you need are 3 key ingredients:

  • relax your muscles in your body
  • slow down your heart rate and breathing
  • calm your mind.

Let’s take a look at 12 simple practices you can easily add to your routines – even if you’re chronically ill – that activate your relaxation response.

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6 Ways to Play with Your Kids While Living with Chronic Illness | The Health Sessions

6 Ways to Play with Your Kids While Living with Chronic Illness

This article is written by Ava Roman from Revivalist

Chronic illness can affect every aspect of your life — even your relationship with your kids. You want to chase them around with boundless energy, but your condition has you sitting on the bench far too often. How can you maintain your bond without driving your little ones crazy with boredom?

Fortunately, you don’t have to be an all-star athlete to entertain your children. You still have plenty of options, even if you rely on assistive devices for mobility or need to limit your movement to short bursts. Here are six ways to play with your kids while living with chronic illness.

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18 Sweet and Savory Recipes with Berries You Should Try This Season | The Health Sessions

18 Sweet and Savory Recipes with Berries You Should Try This Season

Berries are a beloved ingredient in healthy recipes, sweet or savory, all around the world – and for good reason. From strawberries and blueberries to the exotic açaí berry, these juicy superfoods are packed with antioxidants, fibers, vitamin and manganese.

Despite being sweet, studies show that a handful of berries can improve blood sugar levels and insulin sensitivity. Raspberries and strawberries have been shown to help lower cholesterol and improve arterial function, two important factors of heart health. Consuming cranberries reduces your chances of developing a urinary tract infection with 26 percent. And thanks a compound called anthocyanidins, eating 1 to 2 cups of blueberries every week can help you keep mentally sharp in old age.

All the more reason to regular snack on nature’s colorful candy!

Of course you can eat any kind of berry straight up, no recipe required. But who does’t like to add a little sweet & sour taste to their smoothie, yogurt bowl, healthy baking and even salads and dinner?

So let’s take a look how you can enjoy even more strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries this season with these 18 sweet and savory berry recipes!

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60 Spoonie-Proof Ways to Express Your Love in Each 'Love Language' | The Health Sessions

60 Spoonie-Proof Ways to Express Your Love in Each ‘Love Language’

This article contains some affiliate links to products you may find useful, at no extra costs to you. All opinions are my own. 

Let’s face it: living with chronic illness isn’t terribly romantic. On the contrary: when you can no longer go out on exciting dates or have sex as often as you’d like, it can be challenging to keep the romance alive. And the practical and psychological problems that often accompany health problems can also place a strain on your relationship. So what can you do to express your love and keep that spark alive when you’re chronically ill?

In the bestseller ‘The Five Love Languages’, Gary Chapman describes how everyone has a preferred way to give and receive (romantic) love: words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service or physical touch.

Knowing your partner’s and your own ‘primary love language’ helps you get a better understanding of each other’s deepest wants and needs, what fills up their and your ‘love tank’. You suddenly get why your lover is hurt that you never think to bring her or him flowers (love language: receiving gifts), although you feel you show them your affection all the time by bringing them coffee in bed every morning and cooking elaborate meals on weekends (love language: acts of service).

Because no matter how healthy or sick you are, we all long to be loved, cherished and appreciated. We all want to feel beautiful and interesting in the eyes of the one we love.

But when chronic pain, fatigue, brain fog and other limitations stop you from showing your love in your usual way, how can you still speak your partner’s love language?

Maybe you used to love picking up sweet little gifts for your significant other, but now you have too much difficulty getting around town to make that happen. Or perhaps that neck rub at the end of the day has now become too painful to be pleasant.

Luckily, according to Gary Chapman, the number of ways to express your love in a certain love language is only limited by your own imagination. So let’s see if we can find some accessible, low-energy ideas to express and experience your love, spoonie-style! 

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