My Top Coping Mechanisms When Suffering From Sickle Cell Crisis
Fellow Sickle Cell sufferers know that there’s nothing worse than suffering pain so bad that you can barely move. It gets to the point where it even effects our breathing, and once it gets to that point there’s nothing else for us to do but get dosed up on painkillers and try to get comfortable in bed (whether it be at home or the hospital). It’s a process I’ve been through a lot in my life, and it seems to get worse every time. However, to take my mind off things I have a list of coping mechanisms that help me feel a little more comfortable as I lay in agony. Check out my list and feel free to post your own coping mechanisms in the comments below.
Dragon Ball Z
Whether you’ve followed this blog for a while, or you know me personally, you’ll know that Dragon Ball Z is one of my favourite TV shows ever. I have the entire series in my collection, and it’s become my tradition to watch the show in its entirety every time I have a severe sickle cell crisis. I tend to fall asleep watching the show because of all the medicine, but just having it on my TV or iPad is comforting, and it helps me take my mind off things even if only for a little while.
Hot Water Bottle
I’ve kept the obvious medication and water off this list because those are mandatory things for a Sickle Cell sufferer, but a hot water bottle is definitely something that can help bring minute relief to the pain. It won’t temporarily numb it like painkillers will, but the heat pressed against the pain (with a towel wrapped around the bottle) can help soothe it momentarily.
This one can be tough, especially if the crisis is in my arms as well. Unlike watching Dragon Ball Z, reading requires movement on my part, so it’s not always ideal for me. Luckily, things like audible exist, and I’m able to listen to a book if need be. I didn’t read so much during my last crisis unfortunately, because the pain was too much for me to keep fiddling with a book, but it’s one of those things that always help to take my min elsewhere.
Although I’m not always fond of my friends seeing me suffering in hospital, sometimes having great friends in reach are enough to help you get through these hard times. I find my friends absolutely hilarious, and their messages help me relax and stay positive. It’s always good to have the support of others.
Lots and lots of pillows
My crisis pains are usually all over my body, so just lying in bed flat is always uncomfortable for me. I usually ask for as many pillows as I can get so I can rest my painful limbs on them. I twist and turn quite a bit too because the pains get so uncomfortable, but always having my pillows helps me find a comfortable enough position to attempt sleeping in.