As the newest addition to GB News, Eamonn admitted that behind the camera, he sometimes feels depressed about his chronic pain. Suffering from a dislocated pelvis and three slipped discs back in March, the star has been on a lengthy road to recovery. One that has still not ended. The star has previously admitted that he is “not a well man”, and most recently even went as far to say that without his devoted wife Ruth, he wouldn’t be able to cope.
“For the past seven months, being incapacitated with back and leg problems has really scared me,” the star admitted.
“What if there was no one there to help me with the little things? To fetch and carry, cook and clean and generally ask if I needed anything?”
Eamonn’s fear comes after he was left having to relearn how to walk; the star also revealed that he had lost nerves in his right leg, making “even the most simple things hard”.
The NHS explains that a slipped disc occurs when a soft cushion of tissue between the bones in your spine pushes out. It causes intense pain and puts pressure on the nerves.
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In fact, the extent of the symptoms a slipped disc can cause include the following:
- Lower back pain
- Numbness or tingling in your shoulders, back, arms, hands, legs or feet
- Neck pain
- Problems bending or straightening your back
- Muscle weakness
- Pain in the buttocks, hips or legs if the disc is pressing on the sciatic nerve (sciatica).
In addition to three slipped discs, Eamonn had to deal with a dislocated pelvis. Damage to this area is significant and can easily affect other major organs such as the bowel or bladder due to the location of the bone within the body.
Although there are different types of pelvic injuries, treatment is always arduous and requires a specialist orthopaedic team, and a lengthy recovery time.
Eamonn shared a glimpse into his own recovery process a few months ago, putting a video up on his Instagram with his physio James. In the video, Eamonn was seen doing simple exercises to strengthen his pelvic ability.
In the video Eamonn said: “This all looks very simple. And it is very simple, except it is like learning to walk again. It’s hard!”
Speaking candidly to the Metro a few months later, he said: “It’s quite depressing because every day you get up and hope you’ve done better and you have treatment and it still hurts like hell!
“For me, I’m in a race against time to strengthen my back before my steroid injections – which do ease the pain – run out.
“People say, ‘How did it happen?’ But, I have no idea why in such a short space of time, you go from being healthy to being told your nerves are dead in your leg because of your back and it might take a year before there’s improvement, and you’ve no choice but to do the exercises otherwise you’ll be sitting in a wheelchair.
“I took my health for granted – it’s what you do.”
Through hard work and physio, Eamonn confessed that “bit by bit” he is getting better, but still worries that his chronic pain will never cease for good.
Talking on Loose Women back in April he added: “Chronic pain, no matter what causes it – it doesn’t discriminate between whether you’re young or old, man or woman.” Although he still tends to depend on a crutch, Eamonn understands that the recovery process is going to be slow.
Pain is classed as “chronic” if it persists for longer than 12 weeks, despite the intervention of medication or treatment. The NHS explains that chronic pain is caused by the brain sending out pain signals to the rest of the body.
It is due to misinterpretations of nerve signals that are sent by the spine to the brain, which then causes pain. In some cases there can be no real cause at all.
In the past doctors recommended bed rest in order to rid individuals of chronic pain. But more modern research has found that this is in fact the worst thing individuals could possibly do.
Instead the NHS recommends the complete opposite – exercise. They state that a combination of exercise, staying at work, physical therapy and painkillers is the best formula for ridding pain. Exercise does not have to be strenuous, but can include any of the following:
- Using an exercise bike
- Dancing, yoga or pilates
Alternatively, like Eamonn, doctors may be able to offer physical therapy sessions, which involves a combination of manipulation, stretching exercises and pain-relief to help individuals function better.