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8 Questions about Pelvic Pain, TMS and Trigger Points

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by balancedanswers, Feb 13, 2021.

  1. balancedanswers

    balancedanswers Peer Supporter


    I have some questions about TMS/MBS/PDD:

    1. In the book Unlearn Your Pain (Dr Schubiner), as well as Dr Sarno's book The Divided Mind, my interpretation is that both mentioned not worrying about other forms of treatment and only focusing on the psychological component, rewiring the brain and slowly getting back into exercising. Is this true?

    2. Dr Sarno mentions TrPs (trigger points) in his book healing back pain, but he refers to them as tissue that has less oxygen going to them bc of lack of blood flow. In TrP work, you're supposed to palpitate this are to increase blood flow an reduce the tension, but in Dr Sarno / Schubiner/Alan's work, we're told to ignore this and focus on how the mind interprets pain. So in other words, TrPs arent a factor, right?

    3. There is limited information in nerve damage and what to do about it, but I wonder if it is possible the pain in the perenium/scrotal area is related to nerve damage. Would I need to see a neurologist to rule this out?

    4. I remember diving into ice cold ocean water back in LA and having the pain completely disappear for 45 minutes. It came back when we got home. I don't know if this is due to the mental state I was in swimming or if the ice water somehow neutralized the pain. Does anyone else have this experience?

    5. In reading Unlearn Your Pain, doing the exercises, I honestly don't think I have that much trauma / unexpressed emotions. I have been a life coach and in self development for a long time. A lot of the chapters on childhood trauma, unexpressed emotions, don't apply to me. When I do the exercises, some emotions come up, but it's not super charged. I have become, however, self critical and a little hard on myself and a bit OCD/perfectionist especially since my last relationship but I've been a bit like that all my life. Just wondering if anyone can relate.

    6. Is it possible that originally, the TrPs were the problem, but now that it's resolved, the pain circuits are still firing? Given that I have had TrP issues in the past and it has resolved other symptoms, is it possible that I can do the MBS work, while periodically attending to my TrPs?

    7. In going back to exercising, I have tried this in the past but whenever I try to ramp up, sometimes I get flare up and now I have fear around exercising too much. Does anyone have a suggestion for this?

    8. Same question as above, but for masturbating.

  2. miffybunny

    miffybunny Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi @balancedanswers ,

    I'll try to address each question:

    1.) Yes. Accept the TMS diagnosis and abandon ALL physical treatments.

    2.) Don't make an issue out of trigger points and lack of blood flow. Don't get hung up on the trigger point notion (it's nonsense) and as far as lack of blood flow (as Dr. Sarno theorized), it's transient and harmless. Your pain and symptoms are learned/dynamic pain. They are learned habits of the brain and body. Dr. Schubiner refers to it as neural circuit pain or brain based pain. Shift focus from the body to the mind.

    3.) Nerve damage is nonsense and don't even bother going to a neurologist. In fact run in the other direction. They are useless, will order useless tests, give you useless/scary labels, and prescribe medications like Lyrica. That's it. Don't even get on the merry go round. Trust me, I've been there and they will only cause you terror and waste your money.

    4.) The temperature of the water was irrelevant and had no bearing on your symptoms. Your thoughts about it did however, as well as the emotional state you were in.

    5.) Trauma is not the only reason that some people go into chronic pain syndromes. Personality is enough of a reason in itself because we generate tremendous tension when we have certain personality traits (the ones you listed are killers). Day to day stressors, medical trauma, or even accumulated stress in adulthood are enough to put the brain and nervous system in tilt.

    6.) Trigger points are nonsense. It's a trendy term but don't buy into it. That's my opinion and I'm sticking to it lol. Dr. Schubiner would concur.

    7.) The goal is to reduce fear (not symptoms). Exercise and other "triggers" are harmless. Gradually do what your can without fear. Let fear be your guideline. If you can only walk 3 steps without fear, that's what you do. Gradually tolerate fear more and build up.

    8.) Same
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2021
    balancedanswers likes this.
  3. balancedanswers

    balancedanswers Peer Supporter

    Thanks! Can you provide some context as to your experience in healing?

    From my understanding, feeling and just looking at the data and studies I know Simon & Travell's work is not BS and its real. However, I've been studying TrPs fo 10 years and I believe I have eliminated most of them that pertain to my pelvic pain, so this last state which I am stuck at, I believe, is a psychological issue.
  4. miffybunny

    miffybunny Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi again!

    As long as you harbor doubts or qualms about there being structural/physical issues , the TMS strategy will have you in its firm grip. Even if TRP's are real phenomena, they are not the cause of your symptoms. If a person gets better from some kind of trp treatment, it's placebo. Nothing wrong with placebos but until you get to the root cause, the tms will usually rear it's head in other ways again. The same goes for all manner of things that can be seen and studied in the body. Just because they are there, does not mean there is causality. In fact, in the vast majority of cases there is zero correlation. Unless there is a tumor or infection or some kind of actual pathology, they are meaningless and have no bearing on your chronic pain. Remember, chronic pain is NOT normal. Once you go into the chronic pain zone, it means the brain has taken over.

    You can read my story in the Success Thread. I was diagnosed with CRPS which is considered to be an incurable neurological disease. I was told I'd be in a wheelchair. I also suffered from interstitial cystitis (full blown) many years ago , and that too was TMS. Any label with the word "syndrome" is also a red flag for "we don't know what you have and there's no cure"...basically just TMS. This is an inside job. No one "out there" is going to "fix" it but you. Which is actually good news!
  5. balancedanswers

    balancedanswers Peer Supporter

    Thanks! I went through the success forum (still reading), found some similar concerns from these users 10 years ago. It seems to be a common concern

    "Soon after I began Dr. Schubiner's program I found a book called "A Headache In The Pelvis" written by Dr. Anderson and Dr. Wise. I think it is Dr. Wise that had 23 years of scrotum pain. He finally found the link to tension and the pain. He is now pain-free and has been for many years. He and Dr. Anderson have a clinic in CA to treat men and women with all kinds of pelvic, urinary tract, and anal inflammation and chronic pain ailments.

    These two doctors never use the terms like TMS or MBS (Mind, Body Syndrome). Yet, they talk about tension, fear, anxiety and stress-related pain. Their plan for recovery is almost identical to Dr. Schubiner's only they incorporate massage and pressure trigger points. Dr. Wise and Dr. Anderson believe that one cannot heal the chronically tightened therefore shortened muscles without massage ALONG with all the emotional counseling and writing exercises.

    I read your post about your PT as somewhat as a 'tool' to aid in your recovery; for the PT could help lengthen your tightened muscles even though you KNOW the pain is rooted in TMS.

    Personally, at first I did the usual TMS over-achiever thinking, "Oh no! I can't get better from painful bladder and pelvic pain until I go out of state, spend money I don't have, and live at a clinic for 2 weeks to receive specialty massages!" My husband... his every so gracious, calming presence... reminded me that I have experienced many weeks pain-free without massage and as I do the work the pain will keep getting less and less.

    You know what? He was right. I don't go get the massages and I am getting better and better. I went 2 months pain-free which is a miracle! Hooray!

    However, in my personal opinion, if you had a PT available that knew how to massage your tightened muscles I can see that it would benefit you to learn how to relax as you practiced deep breathing through the massage techniques. Times in which I have received massages I have faced how hard it is for me to receive from others and so it is a good tool for me to receive love for myself, breathe deeply, and relax my mind as well as my muscles."

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