If you read my last post on here you would know that I spent a whole week on my back after injuring my lower back; possibly a bulging or slipped disc. The experience was very unusual for me as I have never had more than a couple of days off from school in 25 years. It gave me the chance, during my waking hours and under the influence of powerful painkillers, to read and re-read the news online and I was disgusted by the actions of Trump’s government in the US. It is true to say that the current President’s actions would be deemed to be ‘far-right’ politically here in Europe. However, he is not our President and hopefully will not be re-elected.
This blog post isn’t about politics but about back pain and recovery. As I type, I have started my second week back at school and now only take anti-inflammatory medicine. I’m well but not 100% better, yet. Let this be a cautionary tale to the tall or over-worked or those who mishandle heavy or awkward materials. Like reams of paper in the art room.
So the pinch in the sciatic nerve was diagnosed as a possible herniated or bulging disc and the pressure touched the nerve in my left leg causing excruciating pain (God help people who live with pain permanently, my sympathies are with you). The inflammation around the lower back had to be brought down using regular ice-packs (ok I’ll go do this in a minute) and Naproxen tablets twice a day. The pain dealt with using co-codamol (strong) at 4 hour intervals including through the night. The lack of sleep was approached with amitriptyline (low dose) but I did go on a double dose of this for ten days. The co-codamol knocked me out and made me groggy; my speech slurred and I was totally restless and uncomfortable. After 8 days I started to get used to it and research led me to believe that movement rather than bed rest would lead to a faster recovery. I also had a screaming taxi journey to a physiotherapist who helped with suggested posture control and improved exercises. At first I took painful short walks but gradually built them up; blessed as we have been this summer with a rare British heat-wave. By week 3 I was walking around 12km (7 and 1/2 miles) plus a day. Like a slow Forrest Gump, I walked and just kept going! The photo above is a 3km stretch that has become very familiar.
Three and a half week off and now I’m well enough to return to work. I will still see orthopaedic specialist in the summer and hopefully get a scan to see why this has happened. Thank God also for the NHS as a private appointment and scan was quoted to me at over a thousand pounds before any treatment.
Watch your back. Bend your knees. Sit up straight. I’m not kidding.