I Tried Grounding For My Chronic Illness. Here’s What Happened.
It’s a baby. Let her cry.
This was what the pediatrician told Dr. Laura Koniver when she took her sick daughter to her doctor. As a new mom and a doctor herself, it was not something she could accept just like that. Dr. Laura’s daughter had colic and she was in constant pain. The poor baby cried all the time and her doctor’s advice was not very helpful at all.
But Dr. Laura noticed an interesting and somewhat absurd pattern.
Her baby would cry and cry except when she was holding her, skin to skin, while they were outside and she was barefoot. She would soothe her and the baby would fall asleep. Dr. Laura found this very amazing. This was the only time the baby would relax and feel comfortable. The moment she would step into the house, the baby would wake up and cry again. It was not about the outdoors because the baby would still cry in pain while in the car or stroller outside. If she would try to wear shoes or flip-flops while holding the baby outdoors, the baby still cried. Her skin had to touch the ground while holding the baby.
Dr. Laura’s story intrigued me and got me very curious. As a chronic illness patient, I had one BIG question. But let me tell you my story first.
I Am A Chronic Illness Warrior
It was a usual day (or so I thought).
I woke up and felt like my bladder was going to blow up. I got up, walked into the bathroom and did my thing. Such a relief. I was about to stand up when I noticed that the bathroom was starting to shake. Slow at first, then it became violent. I looked at the floor and saw it tilting downwards, then upwards. I wanted to stand up but I could not find my balance and my body was following the room’s movement. I was swaying side to side, leaning forward, bending backward. Then, things started to spin. If I did not hurry, I would pass out very soon. I cried out for help.
That was the first vertigo attack in 2008 and my life changed ever since.
I would always worry if I’d get a flare-up when crossing the street or using the stairs. Or when teaching a class, meeting my boss, attending church, or having dinner with friends. The episodes happen anytime and anywhere. I never see them coming. Sometimes, they are mild, sometimes, severe. The frequency is unpredictable, too. It was a big challenge to maintain my full-time job. I would wake up feeling my body was hit by a truck. My energy level would fizzle out at around 2 to 3 pm. Then I would literally drag myself to commute back home.
My world became smaller as my physical limitations increased. I became housebound for months. I lost my job, too. I cannot count how many times I canceled appointments at the last minute. I felt inadequate, incompetent, isolated, guilty and lonely. Several treatments, medications, and doctors broke my heart (and my savings account). They could not tell exactly what was wrong with me and how to help me.
Aside from the random dizzy spells, I have chronic and relentless back and neck pain. One doctor had a fancy name for the pain but I forgot it. In 2011, I was also diagnosed with anxiety disorder and depression. And thanks to my weak immune system, I contracted tuberculosis at the same time. So, I thought I was dying. When I got out of that dark place, I knew I had to do something. Something different. And it was going to be on my own terms.
For the first time, I took responsibility for my health.
The Path to Wellness (My Way)
In 2016, I embarked on my wellness adventure. I dove deeper into my research. I read a lot of books and articles about wellness, holistic health, and nutrition. The most interesting part was when I applied what I learned and took action. Below, I would like to share with you the things that have helped me turn my health around:
- At least a glass of green smoothie everyday (It’s my 2nd anniversary on August 4, 2018)
- Chiropractic sessions
- 3-day Detox
- Forgiveness and release of repressed negative emotions such as anger and resentment
- Magnesium oil
- 80% to 90% plant-based food
- Connecting with like-minded people
- Recruiting my family members as wellness buddies
When I thought my treatment options had dried up and when I was about to give up, I discovered the tools to help me. In a matter of days, I noticed positive changes. My chronic symptoms went down from levels 10-9 to 4-3, which helped me wean off my medications. But my quest is not yet over. Since I do my wellness my way, I want my symptom levels to go down even more, if possible. Then I came across Dr. Laura and her baby’s story. Which led me back to the one BIG question…
Can Grounding Help Me With My Chronic Illness?
Could something as simple as touching the earth with our bare skin heal us? Is this another awesome tool I can add to my wellness arsenal?
So, I gathered more proof.
Dr. Laura’s baby was not the only person who got better through grounding. Clint Ober, who rediscovered this ancient practice, tried it first on himself. For the first time, he slept well without taking Advil. When UCLA refused his proposal, he conducted his own experiment. He tested grounding on 60 people. After 2 hours of grounding, the scans showed reduced inflammation levels.
Steve Kroschel, a filmmaker, tried lying naked on the ground for 20 minutes. When he woke up the next day, his chronic back pain was almost gone and his hands were not numb anymore. He experimented on grounding with the people in his local village and he was blown away by the results. One man in a wheelchair stood up and walked after days of grounding. So, I thought, “What do I have to lose?” Touching the ground is free, painless, very easy and accessible. It’s a no-brainer.
On February 21st, I took my slippers off and walked on the ground. I felt slight tingling sensations. The little stones and sand gently tickled the soles of my feet. On sunny days, the warmth of the earth comforts me, while on cloudy or rainy days, its coolness refreshes me. I love it when stones hit a pressure point. The sweet pain and the release of tensions relax me. I do this for at least 20 minutes everyday.
It’s been almost 5 months and I would like to share with you the beautiful changes that I have noticed so far:
- I feel calmer every day.
- Alert mind. I rarely forget things and I think quickly.
- My neck and back pain levels went down significantly.
- Healthier skin. I used to have very dry, reddish and itchy skin in some areas that plagued me for 10 years. I tried a lot of different treatments but nothing worked. My skin inflammation is almost gone!
- Less PMS symptoms. My chronic pain levels shoot up 1 to 2 weeks before my monthly period. The dizzy spells were also more intense during this time. But you know what? If my menstrual cycle was not regular, I would not know it’s that time of the month again! I almost do not notice the symptoms anymore.
- More energy!
- Improved mood.
- Quality sleep.
- I learned to be present and appreciate nature.
- I saved some money! I used to buy a lot of massage oils and rubs and go to a spa for a massage regularly.
Try It For Yourself
I will continue grounding every day and I hope you can join me, too. Try and see how it works out for you. Here’s what you have to do:
- Journal or list down your health issues, symptoms and pains.
- Go outside, take your shoes off and ground yourself for at least 20 minutes. What’s important is your skin touches the ground.
- Do this every day for 7 days.
- After seven days, go back to your journal and record any changes you notice.
- You may continue as long as you want.
Back At You
Have you tried grounding? If so, what are the benefits that you have experienced? If not, are you willing to try it?
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