Dealing with back pain can be an ongoing, daily battle. Often, it’s a battle that can make you feel lonely and isolated. You may no longer be able to participate in activities you once could do, you may not be able to go to work, and perhaps you are even dealing with depression on top of the physical pain.
On top of this, your back pain greatly reduces what you are physically capable of doing. This can result in an increased reliance on your significant other to support you where needed. Including doing most of the grocery shopping, cleaning, and yard work on their own. All of this can lead to stress in the relationship.
Don’t give up! You can get better and there are things you can do to be helpful, even when in pain.
Shift your perspective
The first thing you need to do is to believe that you can get better. Mindset is everything. Try thinking of one small thing you can accomplish each day and keep track of your completion of this task. Also stating or writing down things you are grateful for is a good exercise to keep you present in the areas that mean the most to you.
Start moving more
As counterproductive as it may seem, movement will help you get out of back pain. Pick one ‘go-to’ exercise for relieving back pain to begin practicing each day. Start taking a walk around your house, and eventually expand to around the block. Any type of movement will help you.
Work together with your partner
It’s also essential for your partner to support you and understand your limitations. To keep a healthy relationship, try and help your partner in ways that don’t cause further injury and pain.
Here are some ways you can help to work together with your partner:
- Help in ways that you can. For example, cook a simple dinner, fold clothes once they are placed on a counter or table that doesn’t cause you to stoop, clean off countertops and tables.
- Walking is good for you, so chip in by walking the dog, even if it is just down the street and back.
- If finically feasible, hire help to mow the lawn or help to clean the house. If hiring help is too expensive, don’t be afraid to ask neighbors, friends, and family to help out.
- Help take care of paying bills, filling out forms or other online duties that require time but not a lot of physical strain.
- If having sex hurts, try different positions to keep up a level of intimacy that is good for you and your partner. Click here for a great article by Spine-Health on positions that can lessen pain while making love.
The American Psychological Association has an article about the physical and emotional effects of chronic pain. It details how it’s more than just a physical phenomenon, and therefore can require more than just one aspect of care. They also list a few tips for helping you cope with the condition.
We understand that things are not the same for you and your family now and that you didn’t ask for them to change. Know that these struggles are not your fault and that you are not alone — we’re here to help.