I had a recent experience that really got me wondering about the way we tend to be very casual about things to do with our health. I am not sure if it is a Kiwi “she’ll be right” mentality, or something else. But we really do struggle to look after ourselves. We tend to assume that things will sort themselves out, or that we already know the cause.
But what if we are wrong about those health symptoms? What if there is something that we can do to improve our quality of life? I had a recent experience I’d love to share with you on this very topic…
When Health Symptoms Trick You…
I was rushing around last week getting ready for a busy day with two back to back appointments. I knew that I had a corn on my little toe, but couldn’t stand the thought of attending a meeting in flats (Yes, high heels are my thing!). So, I reached for the corn cushions and applied one for a quick fix. Ta da! High heel ready. I chose the perfect pair and promptly left the house.
After the first meeting, my toe was really starting to hurt. So much that I was actually walking with a limp. I got to my car and seriously contemplated driving home instead of going to my next appointment because I was in so much pain. But I also didn’t want to cancel a meeting at short notice. So, I sat in the car faced with this dilemma and figuring out how I was going to walk across the car park and into my meeting without limping. While figuring out my next move, I just had to take my shoe off for some relief. When I did, the cause of the pain became clear. Somehow, as I had been walking earlier, the corn cushion had folded over and double the thickness was pressing on my corn. No wonder it had hurt so much! I flattened it out, slipped my shoes back on and the pain was gone. What a relief! I was actually able to walk to my second appointment with ease.
This simple fix with my toe really got me thinking about how often do we do this with our health. We choose to ignore the signs, to ‘limp’ through the day instead of stopping to see what the real cause is. We put up with symptoms that we don’t have to, as quite often a simple solution is available.
I had assumed that I just had to suffer through the pain of my corn. That it was just inflamed and acting up. When in reality, if I had checked what was really going on hours earlier, I could have saved myself so much pain.
How many symptoms do we assume are ‘normal’? That they are caused by age, by circumstance, or are just something that we need to live with. I bet there are any number of things that you are choosing to live with right now. But is your solution just as simple as unfolding a corn pad too?
One of the most common things that we put up with are issues with our breathing. I bet you tell yourself that you are short of breath because of your age, or weight, or health, or a condition like asthma. But maybe there is a simpler fix.
There are many things that cause breathing issues. It can even be as simple as the breathing habits you have formed, or the way that you are breathing. Yes, that’s right, you could actually be breathing wrong. It is a bit like when you walk differently to compensate for a corn on your toe. You might walk on the side of your foot, or with a limp to try and reduce the pain.
You may be doing the same thing with your breathing without even knowing. So, if you find yourself frequently short of breath, feeling like you are not able to take enough air in, taking frequent big breaths, or blaming a condition like asthma or hayfever, there could be a solution. Take this simple hyperventilation test to see if this is something you should be concerned about.
Addressing Your Health Symptoms
We are very good at ignoring our health symptoms. But quite often, there is a relatively easy fix. I challenge you to have a look at what is bothering you and try to find a solution for it. If your symptom or condition is breathing related or poor breathing habits may be a factor, consider having a Breathing Assessment and Capnography to confirm if breathing retraining can help you.
As for me, the corn on my toe is a lot better because I decided to be sensible and stay away from heels for a few weeks. As a result, the corn is almost gone and I have no more pain. Soon I will be back to wearing heels again!