Thoracic Outlet Syndrome Thoracic Outlet Syndrome/Brachial Plexopathy. In Memory Of DeAnne Marie.

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Old 04-10-2008, 08:11 PM #1
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Default Our TOS Tips - What helps you to be comfortable?

I know we have these suggestions scattered around the posts and threads.

One of the members asked if we could get all of the tips & suggestions collected into a single thread and then make it a sticky.
I thought it sounded like a good idea.

I also plan to redo the useful sticky thread one of these days, to condense and organize it, so if you notice changes happening there- it's just me.

So when you have time or when you think of helpful suggestions and tips for staying as comfortable as possible with TOS please add them to this thread.

***********************************
These are things I use the most now

Yoga type padded mat
- for stretching/laying out on the floor

Foam roll/cylinder or Inflatable exercise ball
- lay over both ways for stretching of spine and opening chest/pecs

Electric stim or IF stim - helps with muscle tightness/relaxation

Heating pad or Far infrared heating pad

Neoprene thumb, elbow or wrist wraps
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Old 04-17-2008, 12:53 PM #2
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Lightbulb sitting-resting position

astern gave us permission to repost these great ideas:
Quote:
my sitting-resting position
Hx, my Feldenkrais therapist gave me a GREAT sitting position:

Sit in chair, being sure both feet are either planted firmly on the ground (or I find proping them up on a stool or chair to pull less on the BP), and your 'butt bones' planted firmly and equally on the seat. With good posture and shoulders down, place your hands PALMS UP on your thighs as close to your hips/stomach as possible. Make sure your elbows have free room to stick out wherever they happen to be. (a chair with arms may hamper this)

The 'palms up' is critical. notice how it cocks your shoulders back just a fraction? This places your shoulder capsule directly over the shoulder blades creating balance for the spine. It makes the spine a more stable platform for your head.

Head position is also very important. You might use a mirror to see your profile view when sitting and how your head is positioned. I find my default head position is looking UP a bit - which is very bad for me. I have to always re-right myself.
Quote:
One other thing I can add from my Feldenkrais sessions, is to lie down (on bed/couch/comfey floor with head on a pillow) and put your feet up on the wall, with pillows under your knees for support. It's like being in a sitting position only horizontally. Feel your feet pressing on the wall supporting you. It eases tension on the brachial plexus. Give it 30 min or so and you may get some relief.
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Old 04-17-2008, 01:02 PM #3
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Talking Home Neck Traction

I have the Edgelow Protocol kit and had that type of PT, my threapist made me a "home neck traction" thing-a-majig and I love to use it and listen to a meditation CD I got from the library.

The traction device is simply a longish hand towel, a theraband, tape and rope.
First you get someone to help you loop the hand towel from the base of your neck to the top od your head- almost like a unicorn :P. Tie the towel into place up there then tape around the tie just to make sure its secure.
Next, connect the theraband to the towel loop so you have a chain.
Then, do the same with a rope, connecting it to the theraband.

How it all comes together:
The rope end goes on a door handle. Put your head in the towel end, with it around the base of your neck and the tied end close to your forehead/ hairline (think unicorn haha) then you sit down close to the door and slowly lay down. Scootching away from the door on your back until the chain gets taut and you begin to feel a pull through your neck. \
You can move away as much as you want. Also if your arms are too sensitive to fall to your sides, you can use a belt to loosely bind them in a folded arm, yet relaxed position across your belly. I listen to Jack Kornfield's Meditation for Beginners Disc 1 because it talks about pain a little bit.
The pull for me is such a relief. I feel my neck elongate and the feeling of compression goes away. My PT said its ok to do this for as long as you want too! I swear it is the best active thing I've done for discomfort throughout my TOS/ RSI experience and I recommend it wholeheartedly!

If this sounds like something you'd like to try and my explanation was too hazy, let me know. I'd be glad to post a picture of the traction thing and what it looks like in use.
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Old 04-20-2008, 07:50 AM #4
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Default

I know I asked for new suggestions recently - thanks for the replies.

At the moment I have to ensure plently of soft cushions or large soft cuddly toys to use to support arms and neck. Have an adjustable bed but still need lots of pillows and then some of those microbead cushions under arms and hands, also have a large cushion but animal shaped which is useful as head supports arm and prevents slipping plus the legs help stop my head from rolling sideways which does not help either.
I also try and do the sitting up with the palms upwards etc explained in earlier reply.

I really wish I cold just lie down flat as am sure it would help aleviate some of the traction related pain. I find myself getting lower and lower when seated. Obviously this is not something can do when going out which thus limits going out anywhere. Any suggestions on making car journeys etc comfortable.

Hx
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Old 04-21-2008, 03:35 AM #5
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A tip for those who never got comfy with expensive theraputic pillows w/ memory foam:

I've never had it recommended, but I actually sleep with one of those microbead (moshi) pillows at night. It helps me immensely!!! The spandex covering made me feel a little hot but I've slipped it in a regular pillowcase and it works like a champ
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Old 04-21-2008, 12:13 PM #6
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Riding in Cars-

I know having a smooth driver works wonders- no fast stops or starts, no rough shifting or swerving.
Automatic { just smoother} vs manual shifting

Easily adjustable seats - slightly reclined
Padding for seat belt straps
Pillows or pads for arms/ neck

You can get a waiver for the seat belt law due to health reasons - if the belt pressure bothers too much or you need to lay down.

some members make a bed type set up in their vehicle
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Old 04-21-2008, 02:45 PM #7
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Unhappy suggestions for our caregivers (if any)

These may not be practical things, but I'm mid-flare so this is fresh in my mind:

1) don't ask me complex questions: I can only give yes or no answers right now.

2) dont ask me what you can do for me (repeatedly): i will ask for help if I need it.

3) Leave me alone.

4) if I ask for something to drink, don't give it to me in a heavy cup or in glass: light-weight plastic, preferably with a lid or straw so I don't spill it in bed. Don't make me reach out to grab it.

5) get me something to throw up in - just in case.

6) I need quiet.

7) please have my phone in bed with me in case I need to call 911.

8) please have all my meds near me.

9) I likely won't want anything to eat as pain makes me nauseous.

10) leave me alone. This will pass. if I'm no better in 24 hrs, call 911 for me.
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Old 05-24-2008, 07:01 PM #8
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Default cheap and easy to make relief

The Rice Sock! This might seem like an obvious home remedy, but I just made one and I don't know why I haven't done it sooner!!! From the microwave, it works great as a heat pack. Straight from the freezer, its a icy pack. Make two so you can do contrast therapy I got the specifics on how to make one from the WikiHow website here http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Rice-Sock
I suggest going thru the entire page, there are some valuable Suggestions and important Warnings. I've been putting a glass of water in the microwave with the rice sock when heating it to prevent fires and add a bit of moisture to the heating process. My screaming tendonitis pain is now more of a chattering pain with the help from my socks. Ask someone to make you one or two today!! It really takes zero skill and time

added tip: socks w/o a bended heel works great!
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Old 05-30-2008, 10:45 PM #9
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Default Neck traction

Quote:
Originally Posted by thursday View Post
I have the Edgelow Protocol kit and had that type of PT, my threapist made me a "home neck traction" thing-a-majig and I love to use it and listen to a meditation CD I got from the library.

The traction device is simply a longish hand towel, a theraband, tape and rope.
First you get someone to help you loop the hand towel from the base of your neck to the top od your head- almost like a unicorn :P. Tie the towel into place up there then tape around the tie just to make sure its secure.
Next, connect the theraband to the towel loop so you have a chain.
Then, do the same with a rope, connecting it to the theraband.

How it all comes together:
The rope end goes on a door handle. Put your head in the towel end, with it around the base of your neck and the tied end close to your forehead/ hairline (think unicorn haha) then you sit down close to the door and slowly lay down. Scootching away from the door on your back until the chain gets taut and you begin to feel a pull through your neck. \
You can move away as much as you want. Also if your arms are too sensitive to fall to your sides, you can use a belt to loosely bind them in a folded arm, yet relaxed position across your belly. I listen to Jack Kornfield's Meditation for Beginners Disc 1 because it talks about pain a little bit.
The pull for me is such a relief. I feel my neck elongate and the feeling of compression goes away. My PT said its ok to do this for as long as you want too! I swear it is the best active thing I've done for discomfort throughout my TOS/ RSI experience and I recommend it wholeheartedly!

If this sounds like something you'd like to try and my explanation was too hazy, let me know. I'd be glad to post a picture of the traction thing and what it looks like in use.
Hi

I am new to site, but I would be very interested to see a picture of the neck traction. I believe it would help me. Thanks very much.
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Old 06-01-2008, 02:03 PM #10
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Cecily, I see you are new to the neurotalk community. Welcome!!! Glad this looks like something that could help. Just stick with me- I hope to get the photo up before next Sunday!
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