Need a Heating Pad or Ice Pack?


(Photo: ThermiPaq on my lower back)

About two and a half weeks ago, I woke up in bed to the most horrible pain ever. I thought to myself, “this is worse than the pain from my gall bladder surgery!” – seriously. My neck and back hurt so terribly I couldn’t move at all. Over the next two days the pain got so intense that I had to be helped all around the house – if I actually needed to move – and 99% of my days were spent sitting in an upright position moving as little as possible. This was putting more pressure on my hips and lower back, and they were becoming sore, but it was the only way to stop the excruciating pain from jolting up my neck and shoulders. By day 4, my right arm was completely tingly. It ached. I was screaming, literally, in pain every time I moved. I was in tears for hours. Pinched nerve? I mean, I had experienced what I called ‘pinched nerves’ before, and I had experienced this shooting sensation, but never to this degree. It was all I could do to not just want to close my eyes and not wake up.

In comes my mother, my savior. She offered to help me get to the chiropractor, well – to pay for the visit – and I had to drive there myself (she lives 3,000 miles away from me). Yikes! (That was a chore, to say the least!) I know, chiropractors and EDS don’t mix well. But, something had to be done. And, so I went. Two dislocated ribs. 3 vertebrae subluxed. My hip out so much that one leg was 3 inches shorter than the other. All from rolling over in my sleep or whatnot. Lovely!

The chiropractor was a little familiar with EDS (I gave him fair warning when making the appointment), and it could have been from him just reading up on it before I came in (go doctor!) – I was thrilled. He knew what the typical limitations were (or that my stretchy body had no limitations, so he needed to enforce only what normal mobility would allow). And, he adjusted me over the course of a week. After that first session, I could actually walk without bawling my eyes out. I mean, it still hurt like no other, but it was a tiny bit better – I’ll take it!

After two weeks of healing, and several visits later, I seemed to be doing much better. Then, Sunday, I woke up and turned my head in bed. I heard a bunch of crackles and snaps and then instant pain. Oh no!! This time it wasn’t near as bad, but as the day went on, I was back to hardly moving at all. By Monday morning, it was apparent I needed to get back in. The vertebrae had slipped back out. But, the hip was better. And the lower back, where I have scoliosis, was better too. Only slightly out of place. But, those vertebrae! Ack!

Apparently, I should expect this to keep happening. Stretchy tissue leads to things slipping. I know this. But, once they are more stretched out, it is easier for them to keep slipping out. So, I am now told to be very guarded in my movements. If it happens again, to lie on a bed and drape my head off the edge. This will provide, roughly, 12 pounds of weight (my head) acting as a traction device to try and relax the muscles and perhaps let the vertebrae slip back into place. That will be first on my agenda next time. So far, the ribs seem to be staying in place. Little bit of slipping, but not back out like they were. The right side ribs seem to be very temperamental – they tend to slip out frequently.

(Photo: ThermiPaq on my knee)

So, I am in recovery again. Just able to move around the house a bit today. I can’t lift a whole lot or bend over, so sitting upright all day has made my lower back hurt. As I was sitting here with a heating pad on my lower back, I got to thinking. I really like my heating pad. Perhaps it could serve you well too. The best hot pads are the ones in the chiropractor’s office or the physical therapists use them sometimes too. They are huge. They are moist heat. They work nicely to relax muscles. But, I don’t have them at home. And, they need to be heated in a pot of boiling water. When I am hurting, I don’t have the time or energy to do that.

A few years ago, I found a heating pad at Target that I really love. I have been happy with it since I got it. You can heat it in the microwave. You can also put it in the freezer. And, it stays HOT for about a half an hour. Seriously. I don’t like electric heating pads, so this is a perfect alternative. It has some weight to it, which I actually like. It is like heavy heat sitting on my problem area, seems to penetrate better. It also is very malleable and will conform to whatever body part you need it for. I use it for my knees, back, shoulders, ankles, etc. I have one of their bead ones and one of the ceramic clay ones. I like the clay one the best. Anyway, I am going to rest, and you can check out the rest of the info on their site (I posted a little from their site below).

Note: You can buy them all over – Target, Walgreens, etc. Happy heat!! 🙂

Thermionics Heat Therapy Products

  • “TECHNOLOGY. Thermionics pain relief products are unlike any other therapy delivery system on the market today. What makes these products superior is our patented Theramics (Thermal Ceramic) compound, which was developed by a former NASA engineer. This revolutionary technology utilizes a synchronized blend of all-natural, ceramic clay and non-toxic oils to create the ideal thermal transfer source. Theramics is the only product that capitalizes on the efficiency of radiant energy to create deep penetrating, therapeutic pain relief. This unique compound is safe, easy to use, and highly efficient in the treatment of a wide variety of pain discomforts such as arthritis, sports injuries, muscle pain, joint stiffness, menstrual cramps and headaches.”
(Photo: ThermiPaq on my knee)


Subscribe to My Life with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome by Email


  1. Sickly Florida Girl

    Oh girl i feel for you i am haven a hell of a time with my one knee and my back is killen me . but i did find one thing that dose help with the pain and that is 100% pure cherry juice !! I got some from a health food and it helped i couldnot belive it i had a glass around 12:30 and by 2:00pm i was out of pain !NO JOKE!! I did not even take a pain pill. Also i have found a oil called jing ho it helps with pain and can be used as a oil or in shea lotion . i use it on my knees ,arms where ever i hurt . i hope this helps you alitt;e


  2. Vegan Danielle Davis

    @Sickly Florida Girl:thanks for that! i have heard all about cherry juice being good for that. luckily, it is cherry season and i am eating them by the pound, but i will definitely look into getting some of the juice! i have not heard of the oil, so i will do some research on it. thank you! i am sorry to hear your knee and back are doing so poorly. my back is probably the most painful part of my body. i hope that you have found a bit of relief since this post. trivial as it may sound, keep that chin up!! love to you!! xo


  3. Anonymous

    hi new here my son is 10 years old and has not been formally diagnosed but he has the exact same symptoms we have been going to the chiropractor to keep the joints in place and spine he already has mild scoliosis but no stretchy skin only easily bruised and tearing we start physical therapy soon i hope it helps he has lots of pain and since he is young it is hard for him to understand why he cant do like other kids. he also goes next month to duke medical to a geneticist i hope they can diagnose for sure but in my heart i already know. you can email me


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s