Dr Loretta Breuning and Light Your Sparkle on Chronic illness and Pain
I had a great time with Dr Breuning as a guest on her podcast. We discussed chronic illness and pain. Dr Breuning is the author of numerous self-help books including Habits of a Happy Brain, The Science of Positivity, and her more recent book, Tame Your Anxiety. She is the founder of the Inner Mammal Institute. She asks me about my personal experience with chronic illness, how ballroom dance impacts my healing, the healing wheel, and the dimensions (physical, emotional, and passion). She offers her expertise in how to create new circuits in the brain by connecting pain and relapses with illness to positive experiences. We touch on the culture of illness and the "sick role" and how it serves positive and negative psychological benefits. She emphasizes the importance of building on the branches and circuits that we already have in our brain from our life---these "strengths" help us overcome challenges and live a meaningful life. The idea of using "strengths" to build resiliency is at the heart of my own healing and philosophy. We discuss practical suggestions which are easy to use and they work!
Lupus--an autoimmune illness--affects an estimated 1.5 million Americans; 90 percent are estimated to be women.
The AMERICAN COLLEGE OF RHEUMATOLOGY has listed the following as criteria for a diagnosis: A diagnosis of 4 or more of the 11 symptoms in a patient's history are required:
• Malar rash: Butterfly rash or facial erythema (red skin rash) • Discoid rash • Photosensitivity • Oral or nasopharyngeal ulcerations • Nonerosive arthritis • Serositis (pleuritis or pericarditis) • Renal disorder (persistent proteinuria or cellular casts) • Neurologic disorder (seizures or psychosis) • Hematologic or blood disorder (hemolytic anemia, or leukopenia, or lymphopenia, or thrombocytopenia must be detected on two or more occasions; thrombocytopenia must be detected in the absence of drugs known to induce it) • Immunologic disorder (anti-double stranded anti-DNA test; positive anti-Sm test; false-positive syphilis test) • Positive antinuclear antibody (ANA) titer (in the absence of drugs known to induce it)
Christopher Hobbs, Ph.D., interviews Casey Hersch, LCSW--founder of LightYourSparkle.life. Dr Hobbs is an herbalist, author, botanist, mycologist & research scientist. Together they explore many topics at the heart of illness and healing. Casey Hersch shares her experiences with childhood illness, Crohn's disease, and how she copes with a disease process while embracing a quality life.
Topics covered include:
The origins of Light Your Sparkle.life Overcoming labels associated with diagnoses History of childhood illness Coping with the mystery of autoimmune illness Navigating the medical system Be empowered over illness--NOT a victim of illness Transforming fear into hope Living with Crohn's disease Holistic approaches to healing The healing wheel-emotional, physical, and passion The importance of an open-mind Resiliency: how to build it Mind, body, spirit and healing Tips for people with autoimmune The influence of mental health on illness Stress and Diet Self esteem and confidence How to create an integrative health team for your needs
Dr Teitelbaum discusses autoimmune illnesses with Light Your Sparkle:
I had the privilege to interview Dr Jacob Teitelbaum, world renowned integrative physician, author, and expert on autoimmune illnesses and chronic pain. I have followed his work for many years, using it to support my own struggles with autoimmune illness and I learned so much from our time together. Following our interview, I began implementing some of his recommendations. He stressed the importance of using him and other physicians as a "guide" rather than a boss and to choose treatments that "feel right" based on the educated information received.
Topics covered include:
The autoimmune illness epidemic Factors overwhelming the immune system The psyche and how perceptions drive the immune system Empowerment--how to make decisions for your health Crohn's disease Nambudripad's allergy elimination technique (NAET) Autism Fibromyalgia overview and treatment Thyroid Mind-body connection Food allergies Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Navigating information in the media and internet SHINE protocol Resetting the autonomic system Emotions and illness Stress and the immune system Treating chronic pain Nutrition and supplementation
The American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association, Inc., estimates as many as fifty million Americans suffer from autoimmune related diseases; 80 to 100 diseases fit into these categories (2018). Social workers offer services in diverse community sectors such as schools, mental health agencies, hospitals and medical clinics, nonprofits, and private practices. Clients are not often referred for mental health services following a diagnosis of autoimmune disease. It is more common that social workers will learn of other stressors—such as a diagnosis of autoimmune disease—through assessment or ongoing interactions with their clients. Autoimmune disease may not come up in conversation, as clients can be unclear about how their illness overlaps with mental health. They may not see how a social worker can help. As an LCSW who lives with Crohn’s disease—an autoimmune disease also known as Inflammatory Bowel Disease—I learned the nuances in treatment from my own personal experiences. Social workers are an integral part of the treatment team and contribute significantly to helping patients manage symptoms and heal. Therefore, understanding how to approach these patients in an ethical and diligent manner is critical.
Sometimes life can seem so terrible that the only way through it is to laugh about it. Have you ever had such a terrible experience happen and then months later when you tell the story, you end up laughing about it with friends? Laughter is a release from tension and stress. It also lifts your mood almost instantly. Needless to say, humor has been an incredible asset in dealing with my illness and stressors. Looking back at my childhood, it was tough--not much to laugh about. However, my mom and I managed to find humor in life which took the edge off and made us feel as though things would be ok after all. Sometimes when my mom and I reflect on the hundreds of physicians I have seen and the numerous times I had an emergency as a result of illness, we find humor in our lives; we find a way to laugh about our endurance and it makes things so much easier.
When I was diagnosed with Crohn's disease, I immersed myself in online research, checking books out at the library, talking to others with similar or the same condition. I expected I would find a solution that I could proceed with easily and swiftly. My inquiries and research opened a Pandora's box as there was so much information I hardly knew where to start. There were plenty of articles about the condition and a number of people who were proposing dietary plans for helping the symptoms. Some people claimed changing the diet would cure the condition. I asked my GI doctor at the time if dietary changes would help Crohn's disease. He said, "Crohns disease is a genetic condition. Food has no impact on the condition. You can eat whatever you want and it won't change the progression of the disease." Now, grant it, this was over 10 years ago, much has changed in the research and understanding of Crohn's disease, but I was baffled; How can a condition that involves digestion not be impacted by the foods I eat? Fortunately I quickly realized that what we eat has a profound impact on the disease process and the gut. I made changes to my diet and saw immediate improvements. Today, diet is at the core of my healing regimen.