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Help! Severe lower back spasms…can barely walk

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by calilady13, May 31, 2016.

  1. calilady13

    calilady13 New Member

    Hi everyone,

    Need a pep talk or some guidance. I have fully accepted I have TMS and have had a good amount of success working through some really awful low back pain. I had an MRI a couple of months ago and they found a herniated disc, but after reading Sarno and Schubiner I didn't believe the pain I was experiencing was from the disc. I have had a lot of relief since starting the program, but haven't been totally pain free. Overall have been able to exercise and live comfortably though and thought I was on the track to total recovery.

    Just yesterday I started getting awful lower back spasms radiating into my butt and legs. The pain seems to be mostly on the left side, but does seem to move a bit across and over to the right side too. I was trying to prove to myself that this wasn't anything to worry about so I leaned over forward. When I did that the pain became excruciating. I could barely stand back up. Since then I have been able to barely get up and down off the couch or even walk without lots of severe spasms. This is the worst, most debilitating pain I have ever been in. Usually when I get spasms they go away after a day at the most, but this morning I feel little improvement.

    I am really confused about what to do. I just want to take care of myself and get myself through this acute phase so I have been taking advil and tylenol and they help a little. I have also used ice, but not sure I should. I am really worried. I have a lot to take care of at home and work and right now I cannot do anything without the darn spasms stopping me in my tracks. The pain has been so severe that it makes me dizzy.

    I'm trying to figure out if this is from all of my current stressors and obligations or a little slip and fall I had last week. I tripped while on a walk and fell onto my stomach (not sure that could cause back pain though). Been journaling and trying to relax, but this pain is really freaking me out. How could I get such a resurgence when I know it's most likely not structural?
  2. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Calilady. I'm sorry you are having lower back pain, but am confident that belief in TMS repressed emotions will cure you. I had severe back pain two years ago and healed because of learning about TMS.

    MRIs can indicate a herniated disc, but as Dr. Sarno says, that might not cause pain. The pain may come from some repressed emotion(s).

    Have you taken the Structured Educational Program, free in the subforum of this web site? It helps us to learn the emotions causing our pain.
    You are already journaling, and that was one of the main things that helped me discover I had been repressing anger emotions since my boyhood
    when my parents divorced when I was seven.

    I think your back pain may very well be because of current emotional stresses and obligations, and not the fall you had last week.

    Deep breathing and relaxation are great for relieving stress and pain.

    Meditation is a time-honored way of relaxing the mind and relieving anxiety, mental stress, headaches, and even physical pain. There are many ways to practice meditation, but many consider the most successful to be a technique called the Relaxation Response (RR).

    It is a wonderful way to practice TMS Mindbody Healing because it changes harmful thinking in the subconscious mind which Dr. John Sarno says causes pain in many people.

    The RR, practiced daily for a few minutes has a profound positive effect on the subconscious mind, relieving or curing everything from inflammation and pain to headaches, stomach problems, insomnia, high blood pressure, to even aiding in recovery from cancer.

    RR is like Transcendental Meditation which is taught by TM specialists who charge hundreds or thousands of dollars. But the RR is free and you can do it yourself.

    It is done 20 minutes once or twice a day, before a meal, and works best if not practiced within two hours after a meal. I do it in bed before arising in the morning and again in bed before falling sleep. Often, I only do it 5 or 10 minutes and it works to calm me and put me to sleep.

    Just sit in a chair (or lie in bed in the morning or at bedtime), close your eyes, don’t listen to any music, and try to avoid outside noises. Let your mind think of a word such as "One " which has no real meaning or association. Or say a calming word such as “Peace,” or add the faith or spiritual element by saying a favorite religious word. Breathe in through the nose, hold the breath for a few seconds, then say the word when you exhale.

    Say the word silently over and over. At the end of the 10 to 20 minutes, picture and feel yourself as you were when you felt your best, and in a place where you felt that way.

    When distracting thoughts arise during the RR, as they will, just tell yourslf, “Oh, well,” and go back to repeating your chosen word. Transcendental Meditation teachers will charge hundreds of dollars to give practitioners a word, but the word you choose yourself in the RR works just as well.

    There are several free videos on Youtube about the Relaxation Response. I especially recommend these two by Dr. Benson:

    intense50 likes this.
  3. calilady13

    calilady13 New Member

    Hi Walt,

    Thanks so much for your response! It really helps to know there are kind people out there listening and that can relate.

    I am doing the SEP and am on Day 6. I have to say the video in today's lesson was immensely helpful in reminding me how it is likely repressed emotions causing me to unconsciously tense up my muscles. Wow, just never experienced pain this severe. I am really overwhelmed right now with obligations and responsibilities. I have also been placing a huge amount of pressure on myself and have been feeling a lot of guilt lately. If I am honest and think about my past history of pain conditions, they always arise during stressful times. So this pain I am experiencing right now really fits my pattern. It's also interesting that the pain arises either when I am anticipating something stressful or after I have been in crisis mode or getting through a really stressful time. It's obvious my brain is trying so hard to protect me or wake me up and let me know I have been neglecting myself.

    These links to the Relaxation Response look really interesting. I'm excited to check them out. I do already meditate (though not regularly), but haven't heard of this particular kind of meditation.
  4. Steve Ozanich

    Steve Ozanich TMS Consultant

    Herbert Benson is a pioneer, he gets it.
    intense50 likes this.
  5. calilady13

    calilady13 New Member

    Hi there,

    Having a really hard time still. The pain has increased. The only position I can get into that is sort of comfortable is laying flat on my back. Getting up and down off the bed or couch is excruciating and each step I take I am getting spasms. I have been doing deep breathing and watched the relaxation response videos which were great. I plan to incorporate this into my daily routine. I don't expect to feel better overnight, but I wouldn't have expected to feel even worse today. The ibuprofen is barely making a dent and the leftover muscle relaxers aren't doing much either.

    The thing that is still confusing me is my MRI. Is it ever possible that a herniated disc can produce the pain? My doctor said there was swelling around the herniated disc that might be affecting the nerves, but there didn't look to be entrapment. How is it possible to tell if the pain is coming from the disc herniation or from repressed emotion?

    I know putting pressure on myself to get better makes things worse, but I have things to take care of and people and pets that depend on me and I can't fulfill any of my obligations right now. My poor husband is doing his best to step up to help out, but it's not feasible for him to do so much longer. He has to work.

    Anyone have tips on how they got relief from their worst pain? Like how do I keep moving and doing what I need to when the pain is so severe I feel dizzy or like my legs are going to give out.
  6. dusty67

    dusty67 Peer Supporter

    Hi Calilady13. I am going through the exact same spasms as you and it is horrible. Only sort of comfortable position I can get in is sitting. Lying down for me....BAD, then I spasm when I try to move or get up. Mine were so bad last night I woke up after midnight screaming and screaming until I got out of bed and into a chair. The pain was so intense, I have not experienced anything like that since childbirth. I was frozen, could not move. It was like a lightening bolt in my spine every step I took I thought I was going to collapse, pass out or throw up. Seriously felt like my spine was going to snap. My poor kids and husband were so stressed and upset. I ended up having to call 911. They gave me laughing gas to get me into the ambulance (still screaming all the way). Emergency room Dr said its either muscle spasms or a disc or nerve (most likely due to inactivity for 2 weeks as I am recovering from ovary removal and was apparently on bed rest too long, Dr's did not give proper aftercare instructions but thats another story...)
    I was healed from TMS a year ago. Complete recovery. NO pain. So the past couple of days since this started I have been treating this an another episode because life is currently very stressful for me. It made sense that Its TMS. I know that I Do have herniated and bulging discs, and its really hard to put your faith in TMS when Dr's are telling you its physical. This pain Im experiencing is so much more than what I had before. I was given Morphine, Tyelonol & Prescription Anti-inflamatory and still had a hard time moving around. Now I am terrified to sleep lying down as this is what starts the spasms. FEAR they say is what perpetuates TMS. So currently, if this is indeed TMS rearing its ugly head....its Winning. I cannot for the life of me figure out how to ignore the pain when it is THAT horrifically intense. I have posted questions on here about it and they all say its TMS for sure as Dr sarno says you cant injure yourself lying in bed, but I find it difficult when paramedics, nurses & emerg room Dr's said they see this all the time and its from muscle spasm or disc/nerve pain after a long period of inactivity. Dr Sarno says herniated/bulging discs do not cause pain. They are part of the normal ageing process of our spines. When I applied that belief last year and ignored my back/leg/foot pain it worked. It all went away. Poof. Like Magic. It was truely a miracle. Once I believed that I was healed. This time its not working. Just getting worse. I was believing up until last nights episode and now there is alot of doubt about it being TMS. The struggle is terrible!

    Did you go to your Dr to get checked after your fall? Can you get some more pain killers to see you through the acute stage. Thats what Im doing. I have to. That level of pain for me is crazy and I cannot bear it without drugs. If I were to collapse it could be really bad as Im still healing from Major abdominal surgery.

    I am in the same boat, I need to be better in 4 weeks as Im leaving for a 5 week trip. My husband is also trying to work and take care of everything else he is exhausted. I am fortunate though as I am off work right now because of my surgery and not due back till August. My kids are having to fend for themselves (which I guess in not a bad thing...it gets them off their lazy butts LOL)

    Anyway, sorry I couldn't be more helpful but wanted to let you know you are not alone. I can fully relate to your pain and struggles. Im sure others here will be able to offer some great advice. I would not have survived the last year without TMSwiki and all the amazing inspirational people that walked me through the way to recovery. I did it once, I CAN do it again. And so will you! Take care :)

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