So I’m gonna talk about something that y’all might find strange, but it helps me sleep at night and sleeping at night is one of the things that keeps me sane-ish these days. See, as some of y’all know, I have a plethora of ailments that make me “disabled” for lack of a better term. Many of those ailments — arthritis, fibromyalgia, degenerative disc disease, and the hypothyroidism to name a few can lead to things like aching joints, restless leg syndrome and other side maladies that will keep one up at night. Getting a good night’s sleep is, to put it bluntly, pretty damned hard, even with the help of my psych meds — one of which has the side effect of making one drowsy. Except I stopped getting that side effect two weeks after I started taking it. ^_^
So anyway, after years of not getting a good night’s rest, I started scouring teh interwebs to find a solution. I tried different herbal teas. I tried taking sleeping aids, even though I knew those wouldn’t work (they never do). But when one is desperate, one will try anything. So anyway, I was looking on some board somewhere for home remedies for Charley Horses (that would be cramps in the calf of the leg for those who don’t want to click the link) because I was getting them wicked bad and even changing my diet didn’t help. I believe the charley horses were a side effect of the statin I was taking at the time — aggravated by my piss poor diet. Nothing wakes a person up out of a restless sleep like a charley horse, you know? So amongst all of the posts about massage, exercise, and essential oils, someone suggested that I put a bar of Ivory soap between the sheets of my bed. I remember thinking: Really? That can’t be right. They’re talking crazy. Nope. They were 100% serious. The posters claimed that Ivory (or Dial) soap really does help with not only Charley Horses, but with Restless Leg Syndrome — a problem I don’t have all of the time, but I do suffer from now and again. And anecdotal evidence backs those claims up. Well, though I, I’ve got soap in the cupboard, and it’ll cost me nothing if it doesn’t work, right? so under the sheets the soap went. And damned if it didn’t work.
Let me tell y’all something. Not only did my leg cramps end immediately. Gone like they never existed, but my back pain disappeared too. Having a bar of soap in my bed alleviates nearly all of my aches and pains while I’m in bed and relaxed. It doesn’t do anything for me during the day, but once I’m settled down and ready to sleep, all of my joint pain — leg pain, back pain, shoulder pain… all of it — is dulled to the point of non existence. I can always tell when it’s time to switch out the soap too, because every single bit of that pain will come roaring back (which is what prompted this post, I needed to change out the soap in my bed). Some say that scoring the soap will “refresh” it and prolong its use, but I’m here to tell ya that doesn’t work for me. I need to replace it completely. And let me tell y’all this: Brand does matter. Because Olay soap (It’s what I had in the cupboard this last time) did nothing. Nothing! I’ll be sticking with Ivory thanks much. It’s pretty cheap, and it does the trick, so why change it? Besides, I used it to make my laundry soap (with something close to this recipe).
Of course, there’s no science (that I can find) to back this up, so y’all will just have to take my word for it — and the word of everyone else it works for. Is it the placebo effect? Could very well be. The mind is one of the great unknowns in the science world. And any scientist that tell you they know all about the mind is blowing smoke, because they know next to nothing about the mind and how it works. And even if it is the placebo effect, I’m certainly not gonna tell my brain to stop making it work. Nope, not me. I like getting a decent night’s sleep free of pain. And, yes I know it doesn’t work for everyone. Like this article said: It appears either to work consistently and well or not at all. As with everything in life, your mileage may vary. But hey, it’s something I wanted to share, though, in case you, dear reader also suffer from nocturnal leg difficulties and haven’t heard of the “soap cure” which isn’t really a cure for anything. But it does help. For me at least (and a few thousand other people). Maybe you have a bar of soap in your cupboard like I did — Ivory and Dial seem to work the best for me. Others have used Irish Spring, but I’ve never tried it. A lot of the articles say “Brand doesn’t matter” but it certainly does. Beauty bars — like Olay — won’t work at all. At least they didn’t for me. And maybe, if you have a bar of the above mentioned soaps in your cupboard, you’ll think like I did that you have nothing to lose by sticking that bar under your sheets. I mean, if it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work, but if it does… wouldn’t that be great?
I just wish it would work for my breathing. Can’t have everything I suppose. ^_^