Herniated Disc – Prepper Treatment

Herniated Disc image

The good and bad of spinal discs

My adult daughter is reclining in her articulated couch after a spinal injection. A year ago, she was in a rather nasty automobile accident. Among her list of injuries, was a damaged C6-C7 disc, causing a laundry list of pains and mobility issues in her left arm. Today’s injection was designed to reduce the inflammation in the nerve sheath, and the speed up the natural retraction of the disc tissue. By shrinking both masses, proper healing will occur, and her strength will return. I went through the same treatment for my cervical injury a couple years back. No fusion required, and I have only moderate residual nerve damage.

Thinking about how this would affect someone in a TEOTWAWKI existence, I reflected on what my spinal team told me. “If you can tough out the pain, these things will usually heal themselves in 12 – 18 months.” According to them, disc tissues will retract quite a bit, and scarring will cover the weakened area – over time. Without further mechanical insult to the damaged area. With rest and immobility.

My primary doctor went on to say that the middle cervical to lower thoracic spine does better than the upper cervical and lumbar sections. The lumbar carries a great deal of weight, and the upper cervical is made up of smaller vertebrae and has much tighter clearances for the spinal cord and foramen.

I suspect that an individual blessed with a good group to support him would get through this kind of injury and live a productive life. Painful as it is, with proper posture, rest and diet, and his group handling all necessary duties, he would heal enough to contribute. Someone on his own, or part of a group that absolutely needs his physical participation, will have a hard time of it.

What might a group do to prepare for treating someone with disc disease or injury? There are a few things that can be set aside in advance, and some practices to add to the medical information store. Tumeric and an inversion table could easily be added to a prepper’s inventory.

Tumeric. This is an arguably effective anti-inflammatory supplement. I used it in powdered capsule form, at twice the recommended dosage, in the early months of my injury, prior to the one and only injection. It worked well enough on my neck to limit pain (which limits potentially damaging reactionary motion), and set me up for a successful injection treatment. It stores well, and is useful for any injury where inflammation is a problem.

Traction. I experienced some early relief when my physical therapist, 1 month after the injury, applied manual traction for my spine. Almost instantly, there was relief from the pain in my neck, arm, hand and fingers. My grip strength increased. Further traction worked less, but the machine he then had me using wasn’t configured for me very well. In my later treatments at the spine institute, I was issued a Saunders traction unit that worked wonders. It has been doing great service for my daughter.

Cervical traction is a touchy thing. The angle of your neck, and the angle of the machine must work together. Thoracic and lumbar traction can be accomplished with a simple inversion table, set to about 25 degrees declination. In these cases, there is enough body weight below the injury site to stretch the spine and relieve the disc. A good unit can be found on Amazon for around $100. Why not? It is useful for general back pain, too, and can be folded up against a wall. A retreat could certainly do with one in its inventory.

Heat or Ice. When my world exploded and pain became enemy number one, only ice would dull it. Nothing I had on hand could cut the pain, and when the ice was removed, the pain was back with ferocity. But my wife kept the ice coming and going, and we shrunk tissue as best we could over the next few days. I eventually rotated ice and heat. This was more to get me through the worst of it and to a point where the pain could be fought with posture, Tumeric and Ibuprofen.

Comfortable Rest. Support and pads. Rest allows the body to heal. Comfortable rest reduces stress, and muscle clenching, which works against healing. Find a position that hurts the least, preferably two, and use them. In my case, and that of my daughter, raising the left arm over our heads was the magic position. A variety of pillow and bolsters are useful to assist holding a position that would otherwise fatigue us. Don’t be concerned with how you look in your rest position. This is your health we’re talking about.

Lose Weight. If the injury is a lumbar injury, and excess weight exists, get rid of it. While this slowly helps the current injury, it is more useful for down the road, when further violence to the damaged site might cause a relapse. Weight is a constant source of stress. It should not be tolerated unless other serious conditions make it a low priority.

Exercise. Keep muscles strong. Avoid atrophy. Simply walking can, at a moderate rate, keep muscles in action and support flexibility. Total immobility is sometimes necessary, but motion should be introduced into the daily routine as soon as the injury allows. We do not do well locked-down. Moving is good for the body and mind, especially if outdoors.

Diet. Eat a good portion of carbs and protein. Healing requires amino-acids and fuel. There simply is no getting around that. Drink fluids. All discs require it. Body processes require it. The brain needs it. Moderate dehydration will affect disc health and healing directly, and organ function in general.


Prepper, or Refugee?

The difference between an idiot and a hero is quite often his timing.

I can’t take credit for this quote, but I also can’t remember who originally said it. Still, it is true. One man rises to charge a machine gun nest and is cut down. The next catches the gunner and his ammo handler during a loading cycle and kills them both – saving his squad. Idiot, and hero. Seconds and worlds apart.

Except that BOTH men were heroes.

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Fantastic Fallout Shelter Interior

I’m not sure if this is an original Utah Shelter Systems (the original culvert builders) unit that was modified, or if it is one of those knock-off copy-cat Atlas Shelters, but this rework is a thing of beauty. If you are a fan of corrugated culvert bunkers, this is for YOU.


EMP Testing Video and Faraday Cages

The video speaks for itself, but I’d like to add a little to it – for the thick-skulled among us.

A “Faraday Cage” works by redirecting a current around whatever is put inside it. The mesh commonly used does this nicely. The electrical current flows around the cage on it outer surface. What gets me charged up is how so many people assume that a mesh cage will protect its contents from an EMP.

It won’t.

The energy produced by

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BOV Engine Damage - Options?

Once upon a time, (8 years ago…) I bought an F-150 work truck that went off lease. I tried unsuccessfully to kill it for the previous 3 years, and decided it wanted to stay with our household. With 121K on it, I thought it might be time for some spark plugs. In went the Autolites, and we were in business.

2 days ago, coming home from an outing, my wife and I heard a loud *POP* and a ticking –

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What's Old is New Again

Barrage Balloons ready to rip the wings off low flying fighters and bombers…

An invasion force seeking to kill, destroy and conquer…

Evil intent seeking to work its will upon any and all…

You might remember the balloons from D-Day invasion pictures. They were restrained from flying aloft by steel cables. Any plane seeking to dive onto targets might lose a wing to the Ginsu cable as it roars past. It was a tactic used for a few decades in

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Last Week's Chinese Hack of Federal Employee Info

The bold and successful hack of our Federal Employee database is a BIG DEAL. I’m sure you’ve heard that this information can be used for:

phishing schemes identity theft credit attacks e-mail hacks blackmail collection of further, more important and damaging information

In order to fully comprehend the importance of this effort, we have to look at what was done, and what can happen as a result.

Personal information regarding current and past employee identities was stolen. This information give

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EMP Hardening Your Vehicle

The jury is out, and will never come in, on the argument about EMP damage to vehicle electronics. But I don’t need a jury. I only need what I know.

EMP can kill your vehicle engine and transmission control electronics. Yup. Kill it dead for sure!

….or not.

The vulnerability of ECMs and TCMs and MAPs and MAFs and CPSs and ICPs (and all the computers and sensors) to the over-current pulse many fear depends on a few things.


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You Find 'em Where You Find 'em

I was in an electronics store this week, looking for a case for a PC build. This particular store doesn’t carry cases anymore, so I spent a few minutes looking at power supplies and assorted parts. There was a young lady in there, to my left, intently going over the offerings of a certain company. At one point, she moved a bit closer and we took up conversation. It turned out she is a product rep for a line of

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New Blog by a Friend of Mine - Prep For Free

You might notice a new banner to the right of the page. It is a link to Prep For Free, which is a new blog written by my friend Nancy Argyle. She has a personal approach to building the fabric of a prepper’s material existence – the “preps.” Her title pretty much sums up her blog’s focus, prepping for free. I’m following her, and I think anyone could benefit from what she has to share.

From her profile:


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