Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Sick Today

     I'm one of the worst kinds of sick for someone raised in the middle-class virtues of thrift and hard work: my back is acting up.

     Only a little, but when it hurts to move between sitting and standing, when getting up from sitting on the floor* is a difficult and complex process as well as painful and well-nigh impossible unless there's something to grab to help haul myself up, when the pain distracts excessively--  That's sick enough.

     I've been ignoring the problem  for several weeks.  January 14th at the most recent Indy 1500 gun show was when it first hit hard enough to be a problem; walking the floor in heavy boots, my lower back started aching and I ran out of energy.  Ahead of the rest of the party, I shuffled through the last few aisles, found a chair, and waited for my friends to find me.  Since then, I've tried to get enough sleep (and mostly succeeded), used a heat pad almost nightly, soaked in Epsom-salted baths, changed how I was sleeping (wedge pillow, flat pillow, none) and been careful to avoid side-sleeping on the wedge pillow.  None of it helped a lot.

     Yesterday afternoon, after a day spent somewhere between "Dead Slow" and "Stop," punctuated by the tricky task of moving from standing to sitting to floor-level work, it seemed like a trip to the doc-in-a-box might be in order.  Preferably while I could still drive.

     Managed to hit the place at a fairly slack time, only two people ahead of me, and in short order found myself talking to a nice young doctor.  He asked questions, poked and prodded and said it sounded and felt like muscle spasm, triggered by strain.  That's not impossible; I do occasionally have to move heavy things and we've been doing a lot of it at work.  He prescribed anti-inflammatories and a muscle relaxant.

     Filled the 'scrip last night, took the first installment, became quite dizzy/tipsy, went to bed and drifted off to a lovely dreamland.  I woke at six this morning only long enough to feed the cats, take more drugs and return to bed.  Called in sick at some point, and didn't fully wake until about an hour ago.

     Made myself a little breakfast, rice and left over "chili mix" vegetables (red and green bell pepper, jalapeno pepper and onions) stir-fried with scrambled eggs and a little bacon. Plus a pot of coffee.

     Now I'm fed and feeling better, living in a world where things drift by in the most delightful undersea manner, and contemplating a return to bed.  I have got to get this under control ASAP and if it takes twenty-fours mostly spent horizontal, so be it.
* The installation I'm working on changing has got connection panels from about a foot and a half above floor level to a little over four feet up.  There are few grabbable points and they're not much.


JayNola said...

Hope you feel better Ms. Ecks.

Merle said...

I've had pretty good results from "valerian root"

If you're not familiar with it, it is herbal & helps relax both muscles & mind - makes it much easier to get some sleep......


Roberta X said...

Merle, I don't do that, especially when I am already on a muscle relaxer and blood pressure mads that make the drowsy.

Paul said...

I know I presented with back pain for several years before my gall bladder went toxic. then they figured out what was wrong. Course I nearly died before they got it right. According to the surgeon it was several years over due to come out and had gone toxic.

Have not had back pain since but I have not changed my opinion about docs.

Hopefully you have a more mundane issue as I would not wish that on anyone.

It is not fun when the body is lagging.

Jeffrey Smith said...

You didn't list BenGay and stretching exercises. I find they work for a few hours (and chair massages if you can find a convenient place), enough to get through the work day. But I've never had back pain serious enough to impede movement...

Feel better!

Will said...

In most cases, cold packs on the muscles works better than heat, although not nearly as comfortable. Several times a day.

A lot of the blame for back pain is due to weak abdominal area muscles. Allows poor posture, which aggravates things that generate pain. Most people do not engage in activities that keep these in proper condition.
I need to revisit this myself. Unfortunately, most all exercises bounce/jar the brain, which is contraindicated when dealing with a concussion. I'm wondering if some sort of isometric routine is possible for this area.