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Welcome Readers and Partners in Care

Welcome friends.

We can all have a voice in chronic pain and chronic stress management. Chronic pain can be physical or it can be mental or it can be both. I suffer from anxiety and depression, and have suffered from physical illness due to anxiety, but writing about chronic pain has helped me. Helping others helps me. Join the fight against prejudice and ignorance. Join the struggle to improve pain. First we start with ourselves. Feel free to visit my other website about PTSD Beyondtrauma.ca

Good Luck.


Why do my legs and fingers swell?

If you’ve been checked by your doctor for leg swelling or finger swelling, and you don’t have heart disease, kidney disease, lymphatic, or liver disease to explain it, then you may have an increase in anti-diuretic hormone. ADH.

ADH come from your Limbic System. it’s a hormone that’s released when your body feels stress, physical or emotional, or even just the fatigue at the end of the day can be stressful.

Check out the Limbic system and the Daily program

have a good day


Limbic System Video

Hi All

Happy Saturday – or Sunday to my followers on the other side of the time zone

I have added a new video to the Limbic System. It was enormous fun thanks to a patient who has endured my whacky doctoring for 18 years. First time I have done a video. Thanks to my darling hubby who formatted it. 

Feel free to comment in Contact if you have any forms. If I don’t make a note on the Blog in answer – please send the comment in a comment box.

All the best


2020 Onward Ho

Happy New Year Bloggers

I believe confession is supposed to be good for the soul – and I intend to start 2020 with a snowy white one.

In no particular order of dastardly thoughts and deeds:

  1. I confess a newfound hate for snow. There’s too much of the white stuff. And it’s too heavy. And too wet. And it’s especially heavy when it’s wet. It gets into nasty corners and spaces that refuse access to the snowblower.  I thought snowblowers were supposed to be less work than shovelling. Why do the machines have to be so heavy? And ornery!  Turning a corner should NOT be this hard.  What else is hard is shovelling. In particular, shovelling wet, heavy, too much snow. Snow fun. Blame the bad pun of pure exhaustion.  Exhaustion because, as if pushing snow isn’t hard enough, try tossing the stuff. It sticks to the curved blade of the shovel with Godzilla like paws – sticky ones.  Which leads me to sin number 2.

2. I have taken hubby for granted. One rotator cuff tear and back sprain later and I’m left with snow duties. And furnace duties. How come logs are lighter than snow? Especially wet snow? In summer I’m going to find the skeletal remains of a couple of gloves in layers of ash in the belly of the beast. Ever tried tossing a log into the gaping maw of a fiery furnace with a glove a couple of sizes too large? (Hubby’s gloves of course – I wonder when he’ll notice he has only two right sides left?)  Perhaps they committed suicide because of all my nagging? Or was it the cursing that had them clinging desperately to the logs as I tossed them into the furnace? Logs which then have to be manipulated from the front to the middle of the burning pile. Not an easy task and one that always leaves me wtih singed eyebrows and a smoker’s cough.

Singed eyebrows and carbon coated lungs cannot be healthy! I know that because I’m a doctor.  A rather peeved off exhausted doctor but a doctor nevertheless. When I’m not clearing snow and feeding a ravenous fire.

What I also know is that I’ve taken seventeen years of snow duty uttterly and completely for granted.  Sorry honey. Please get better quickly. Check out Types of Pain – shoulder and back – puleese.  Pretty puleese with a frozen popsicle on top.

3. I should confess to all my other sins, but there are too many to recount and with my addled brain, too many to recall. One good thing out of a year started with hopelessly too much physical labour, is that it’s helped me keep two resolutions: get more exercise – check. AND work on increasing your understanding of chronic pain – check (nothing helps a person understand pain more than actually experiencing it).

So good luck to all of us stuck in the snow. May we learn to mindfully meditate while shifting the stuff.

And, on a more serious note, I wish you all the best for 2020. I hope it brings you peace and joy.


Christmas Stress

Christmas can be terribly stressful. I have posted some help on the Limbic System.

Good luck


My acute pain has become Chronic. Now What?

Injury from trauma, repetitive injury, even arthritis flares ups cause acute pain. 

If you are susceptible, you can develop a chronic pain problem. Why? Perhaps the acute pain wasn’t properly treated. Acute pain needs rest, ice, sometimes anti-inflammatories, and, if it hasn’t improved in a couple of weeks, physiotherapy or massage, even accupunture has been shown to help. Have you tried these?

Let’s say you’ve tried these, and your pain is not getting better. Now what? 

You could be having an inflammatory load. What causes inflammation – more trauma, poor posture, incorrect breathing (Step 2), any stress – physical or emotional adds to your inflammatory burden. Pain itself is a stress. Double whammy. Calm the pain and calm the Limbic system. Lower the inflammation threshold. 

Calm the Limbic system by up- regulation – things like Qi-Gong on my Daily program. If that isn’t enough – try low dose antidepressants – they work very well for chronic pain. Amitryptaline has horrible initial side effects but helps for chronic pain and fibromyalgia, even cancer pain. 

Good Luck. 


Response to Contact

Anxiety and depression are for sure forms of chronic pain. Mental anguish affects a person’s life considerably and even causes chronic physical pain and chronic disease. Verbal abuse from people you love can sometimes be worse than physical abuse as it’s harder to recognize.

Everyone perceives trauma differently. We are often made to feel shame when we reveal our feelings. This leads to us blaming ourselves and disempowering feelings. If the trauma continues for long periods, it becomes more incapacitating. Some people lash out and become angry, as it seems some parents and grandparents do, others turn inwards. Turning inwards is a form of a freeze response.

Chronic freeze responses are hard to detect. They go unnoticed. People who lash out often receive attention and even sometimes the help they need. People who turn inwards are left behind. Ignored. They don’t cause the same kind of problems and often don’t get the help they need. 

Parents who had trauma themselves cause trauma without realizing it. They cause their children to doubt themselves and feel chronically inadequate. The first part to healing is accepting that shame is part of trauma. I am busy working on PTSD – beyondtrauma.ca – and hopefully can manage to address more of these issues in my time off during the holidays.

In the meantime try to follow the simple QiGong daily exercises – 10 to 12 minutes twice a day. Practice breathing. There are some videos on shame and simple cognitive (what you think is what you feel) exercises under Stress Anxiety PTSD. 

Good Luck

Well done for opening up and reaching out. Accepting vulnerability is the first step to change. 

Why am I waking with worsening symptoms at night?

Thank you for NH for helping me with this post. We had a lot of fun.

At night, our frontal brain, our thinking brain, is not so occupied with work and daily activities. So it becomes a bit of a problem because you now have time to think and thinking is anxiety. Also at night is the time where a lot of us feel unsafe. Either from past traumas – I think of the screaming fights my parents used to have – but one generally feels unsafe at night. Anxiety is higher and therefore the Limbic system is on alert and all our symptoms are worse.

Waking with anxiety is common. Waking and thinking about things even commoner. Finding problems where there aren’t any. It would be easier to deal with these problems if they actually were important enough. But why am I thinking about getting Mayonnaise at two in the morning? Even though I can tell the difference between a big and a small problem, my brain won’t co-operate. I just can’t seem to shut it off. Going in circles in my head. The same story over and over again. Why can’t I just drop it like a hot potato. Or put it in the bubble and watch if float away. AAAAAHhhHhhh

Are these worries? Hell yes! I tell the little Judy in me “Oh Judy. You’re thinking too much. hmmm. That’s curious. You’re anxious”. This can be your body’s way to try to control your environment. Buying Mayonnaise is so do-able. Solving the actual triggers to your anxiety is so much harder. Even facing that thinking about the Mayonnaise if your body’s way to distract you from the real danger which is causing anxiety.

The more you try to control every part of your life, like having enough Mayonnaise. Damn Mayonnaise. Don’t even like Mayonnaise – for the hubby. Where was I? Oh yes – control. More we want to control our environment and the people around us and the things they do – the more anxiety we have. The more energy we use. The more tired we are. The more pain we have. Because all of this is lighting up your Limbic system and causing pain, and fatigue, vomiting or diarrhoea or disease – take your pick.

Sometimes it helps and sometimes it doesn’t. What really helps is doing the work necessary to relieve the anxiety before we’re locked in this prison of spiraling useless conversations in our head.

Prevention is very important but incredibly hard to do. it’s very hard to find a routine and the route can become ridiculously boring. Even the Daily Program. LOL   But – It is worth trying to do the breathing – no – not trying – there is no trying – only doing – doing the proper breathing Step 2.

Often our bodies and minds are fluctuating so it may feel like the program isn’t working anymore. That makes it harder to stick to a routine. But your Limbic system craves routine – one of the reasons why, when you go on holiday, you can come back sick, even though you enjoyed yourself. 

No easy cures, unfortunately. Just hard work. Harder to do if trauma has you frozen – avoiding doing things, withdrawing. It is important. Holidays are coming up and they are particularly stressful.

Good Luck


Trauma Pain and Limbic System

Not quite back from holidays yet, but here is an update on the Limbic system which my patient helped me with.

Limbic System

Chat soon


Where can we as physicians improve?

Hi Readers

I started this website in July 2018 and have decided to take a break for just over  a month. Before I go, I’d like to share with you an astonishing video – a wonderful discussion on the flaws of medicine today and the need to move in a different direction. Enjoy.

I wish you a lovely next month and will return to the blog early December

all the best



Hello readers

This has been a very busy month. I am enjoying my self indulging in a writing course at SFU and have found a wonderful group of fellow writers. My mentor is Jen Sookfong Lee who is a brilliant author. Very exciting. I hope it will improve my writing for the website too. Creative work is an excellent way to manage stress. Of course I am now sitting here writing from 4am which is not exactly health – too much creative energy is also not good. Darn Judy – looks like I’m going to have to try my Yoga Nidra sleep meditation. 

I am presenting my website at a provincial conference webinar – hooray. wish me luck. I have some Case Scenarios I’ve worked out – feel free to comment on Contact if you like. 

Website has received a bit of a makeover in spots – Check out:

Improve Pain where to Start

Also to Anxiety and depression and Stress Anxiety PTSD

Also added a new page – link to Articles.

I would appreciate any links you would like to share

Have a great rest of your week