Friday, November 18, 2016

How you get chronic knee pain

I've now treated many people with painful knees, including a large number whose pain has been both long-lasting and excruciating. The diagnoses these clients had received included osteoarthritis, torn or missing cartilage, and patellofemoral pain syndrome (pain in the front of the knee caused by overuse, wear and tear, or misalignment of the kneecap). In most cases I was able to make the pain abate or go away in (up to) four treatments.

As a martial artist and part-time karate instructor I've also had my own experiences with knee pain. My pain comes from patellofemoral issues: overuse and misalignment. Overuse means that I've done too many deep stances in a karate class; it's a dull pain that passes over a few days. The experience of misalignment is occasional: sometimes I wake up with pain or get up after being seated for a long time and suddenly find that my knee hurts. When that happens it's a sharp pain and something feels clearly out of place. But here is the interesting thing that I found: if I stop and immediately deal with the pain of misalignment, it quickly goes away. But if I can't stop to deal with it, the pain continues for days and becomes much more problematic to heal.

So here is my theory of how a minor issue of misalignment becomes chronic pain. You suddenly develop a pain and something feels out of place (many people I've treated used those exact words: "something is out of place"). Not having the tools to fix it, you get up, walk around on it, take it to a doctor who diagnoses something and gives you a pain killer, then you take it to a physiotherapist who gives you exercises for it. The whole time the something that is out of place remains out of place, you keep putting your weight on it as you walk, it keeps being stressed, and of course the result is inflammation and more pain. As the tissues around the problem swell, it has ever greater difficulty resolving itself. And in the end it becomes the new normal as your body and your mind get used to having it. Hello, chronic knee pain.

Even if you don't have the tools of energy healing at hand as I do, there are things you can do. When the pain develops I immediately stop and try to set the knee right. I will do some calf stretching exercises then sit down, lift my leg and straighten and bend it, trying to get the knee to track properly. If I have to, I'll massage it. Then, when I go to bed, I will put up a rolled up towel under it so it is not fully extended while I sleep. So far I've been able to fix the problem almost every single time with these simple steps. I only use energy healing if the other things I try prove to be insufficient. I have not yet needed to see a doctor or a physiotherapist.

But what about arthritis, you now ask. Or torn cartilage? Or cartilage that's so worn away that your knee is grinding bone-on-bone? Or torn ligaments? These are issues that are more severe than "something being out of place". These are structural changes that go under the heading of "chronic knee pain" and most people believe that only knee surgery can solve them. These are the conditions that have developed over years of "something out of place" not being treated and being allowed to exist in a continual state of stress and inflammation. I've treated all these conditions, or rather I've treated clients who have been diagnosed with having these conditions. (If you scroll down through the pages of this blog you will find many instances of successful treatments.) I always wonder whether the success of these treatments is because the "something out of place" goes back into alignment and the continual irritation stops. In fact people have told me that they have felt something shifting inside their knee as I treated them. And this has happened even after the condition has been bothering them for years.

So my suggestion to you would be to try to deal immediately with any suddenly arising knee pain before it becomes chronic. And to try energy healing for any knee pain that you can't deal with on your own. Here is a caveat though: if in addition to there being pain your knee is also unstable, you likely have a torn ligament. That might need surgery, but energy healing will still help you with the pain and with the recovery.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Healer, heal thyself (2)

No idea how it happened, but Saturday morning I woke up with a pain in my hip that had me limping. It was most annoying, as I had just signed up for a two-day yoga intensive. Luckily it was restorative yoga, but I still had to get there (and back) on public transit, and that translated into more walking than I thought I might be able to do.

I had had SI joint issues before, and had been given exercises for it by a physiotherapist, so I began by doing those exercises, and then I threw in some stretching for good measure. Nope. That didn't work. Next, I tried qigong. I figured standing like a tree for 10-minutes or so might do some good. That didn't work either.

By this point I was getting a little desperate. I am not used to having something wrong with me and I began to think "what if this never goes away? what if it's the beginning of something terrible?" It didn't help that someone I knew had just last year gone through the experience of having what he thought was a pulled muscle turn out to be a rare and nasty cancer. Plus, the clock was ticking, and I needed to go to that workshop.

So finally, in desperation, I turned to my art. I don't know why I thought of energy healing last. Maybe it's because we are often told that it doesn't work as well on self as others. I gave myself a treatment -- and my hip felt better. In fact, I was surprised at how much better it felt. I made it to the workshop (where sitting on the floor made it a bit worse again), then made it home, then treated it some more, and slept with a rolled up towel under my knee. By Sunday evening it was 90-95% better, and on Monday evening I taught three karate classes and a fitness class with no difficulty whatsoever.

Truly, the stuff never ceases to amaze me.