I have an essential question for you or your loved ones. I need you to answer it honestly. If I gave you a magic all natural herbal pill, you only had to take it once, there is no side-effects and you would never, ever feel pain again, would you take it?
Of course you would. You want to be pain free, right?
Okay, you took the magic pill! You now turn to me and say, “Wow, I feel great and I am completely out of pain. Thanks doc! You fixed me…” You excitedly walk out of my office, feeling great, full of hope, admiration and wait… you step on a big rusty nail that goes right through the bottom of your shoe and deep into your foot. But you can’t feel it. Your shoe is now filling up with blood. On your way home, you are involved in a car accident. You broke your right arm and fractured your neck. Now you go home to cook dinner. While preparing your meal, with a nail in your foot, with your fractured arm and neck, you accidentally put your hand on the hot stove and soon begin to smell something burning. Remember, you feel no pain. Your hand is now on fire with third degree burns and you still can’t feel a thing.
Next question. Would you still take my magic pill? I didn’t think so! Does not feeling pain mean that you are healthy or unhealthy? Does feeling pain (when you are supposed to) mean that you are healthy or unhealthy? Unknowingly, you have been trained by your parents, doctors and billion dollar drug companies that pain and symptoms are always bad. There are millions of healthy people experiencing pain this very second, likewise there are millions of people without pain or any symptoms at all completely sick with cancer, heart disease, diabetes, stroke
The Truth about Pain
A common, and sometimes deadly, misperception is that the absence of pain means one is healthy. If I dropped a brick on my foot, I would be in pain, but not necessarily unhealthy. However, there are people right now walking around our community with cancer and heart disease that have no pain, but are very sick!
Let’s look at two top killers of Americans today, heart disease and cancer. By the time you feel symptoms you are, unfortunately, already in the advanced stages of these diseases. Could you imagine, after a large suspicious tumor is found on your mammogram, telling your doctor “I feel fine and I am going to wait until my breast hurts before I do anything about it?” How about finding out that your coronary arteries are 90% occluded but you want to wait until you get chest pain and shortness of breath before you do anything about it. That sounds crazy, right?
The opposite is also true. Every time you take a pill to stop a symptom that your body is producing, you run the risk of driving the condition deeper. If you have mucous in your lungs and your body is telling you to cough to get that microbe-filled mucous up and out, why would you take a drug to stop it? Is coughing when there is mucous a healthy response or is taking a drug to suppress the cough healthy? Do you know the correct answer?
The Purpose of Pain
Although pain is no fun to experience, it does have a purpose. Pain alerts us that something has changed and requires attention. Trying to “kill” pain, without addressing the cause of pain, is like taking the battery out of a smoke detector because the noise it makes bothers you. You may have relief from the noise, but the house could burn down.
In Your Health,
Dr. Jon Wise