1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
    Dismiss Notice

Anti-depressants and Accupuncture

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by jim K., May 15, 2018.

  1. jim K.

    jim K. New Member

    Hello Team!

    Two quick questions:

    1) do you think anti-depressants hurt or help with the pain? I fear that the Zoloft I am on might be impeding my progress by numbing my feelings. Overall, the drug has helped and I've had no real side effects other than a slight numbing of emotions. I've been on them a year.
    2) I recently had my first acupuncture session. Does this break the rules for treating TMS? It did seem to help a little. I had a decent day after. But is this reinforcing the TMS?

    Thanks much!
    andy64tms likes this.
  2. Dorado

    Dorado Beloved Grand Eagle

    1) Personally, antidepressants were somewhat effective as a placebo for me (the decrease in my pain ranged from 30% to 60% while I was on them), but what’s funny and VERY telling is that my pain significantly decreased and went away 90% to 100% (depending on the day) after I completely quit them. I was on them for five months. After quitting, I literally felt so much better in terms of my original TMS pain. Now, I wasn’t necessarily in the greatest emotional state of my entire life when I quit antidepressants; I believe the greater reduction in my pain came from developing a full acceptance that what I was dealing with was TMS, which I was previously in complete denial over.

    Sarno himself wasn’t against temporarily using medications to help you get through a rough patch. I wish I hadn’t used them as they ultimately weren’t as necessary for my own situation as I had believed - I only took them because I STILL thought my doctors were incorrect and that I had severe nerve damage where only an SNRI could mitigate the pain, not TMS. Boy, was I wrong.

    Don’t feel bad about using them, but if you don’t feel like they’re helping you relax and work on your TMS, don’t be afraid to let them go.

    2) Many people say treatments like acupuncture, physical therapy, etc. are a no-no because they reinforce that something needs to be “healed” to your opportunistic brain. Personally, I realized that acupuncture was also doing nothing more than relaxing me, and I stopped going once I began learning how to relax myself.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 30, 2019
    andy64tms likes this.
  3. Time2be

    Time2be Well known member

    I took amitriptyline for about one and a half year. I took it when my anxiety and my mood swings were horrible, as well as I had panic attacks when the pain came. It helped me a bit. I became calmer. I can't say it numbed me. I felt emotions as before. No difference there. It is a kind of a crutch for some time. I stopped it slowly and then three weeks ago I simply forgot to take it any more. And I keep it like that. It's not making the pain go away, no. Not for me.
    I tried acupuncture and as Caulfield I found it sometimes relaxing. It depends very much on the environment. One Chinese acupuncturist had a very busy clinic and it was constant coming and going and I could hear the conversations with other patients. I tried cranio sacral therapy and this I found even more relaxing and soothing. But again. It makes you feel better for an hour. I didn't feel that it had a lasting effect.
    It's difficult to try these therapies without hoping that the next one could be the magic bullet and all problems are solved. I am ambivalent about these therapies. The Zoloft, well, you could try. But be aware that for some it is difficult to stop it again.
    andy64tms likes this.
  4. andy64tms

    andy64tms Well known member

    In 2000 I had a severe reaction to a double dose of Zoloft and Wellbutrin. I lasted four days and I stopped. What was the doctor thinking? I guess she felt compelled to give me medication, I later found out she was not a real doctor, and was called a “Nurse Practioner”. This incident became part of my success story that led to greater TMS understanding and clarity. Here is the full story:


    In my limited experience antidepressants numb your feelings and emotions similar to a bottle cap keeping the “fizz in”. I wrote my very first journal about “How the carpet of sound reasoning had been pulled from under my feet”, as I was a complete basket case for the four days, the worst mental experience I have ever encountered.

    I am inclined to think that antidepressants hurt in the long run, because of the duration, since I notice they are always prescribed for long periods of time unlike taking one pain killer for immediate relief. To me there is a big difference between covering up issues with years of medication and temporary relief that allows deep thought process to ensue. I concur that some people need years of cover up before they can address their emotional issues, but ask yourself: Are you one of them, have you become dependent on this medication? My prescribing doctor hardly knew me, I was indeed depressed, but not clinically, I was just going through a bad time as we all do at times.

    There is no book of rules for TMS, or anybody to chastise or grade you for trying different activities such as acupuncture etc. Bear in mind the insights that Caulfield and Time2be have offered.

    Good luck
    Last edited: May 16, 2018
  5. Time2be

    Time2be Well known member

    I just want to add that I had a very low dose of amitriptyline, the highest I took was 50 mg per day; it was prescribed for pain, not for depression, also not for anxiety. For about 5 months I took only 10 mg, for depression people take up to 150 mg per day. I would never have taken that much because then, I guess it starts to numb emotions.
  6. jim K.

    jim K. New Member

    Thank you for your insight! I've been on Zoloft for about year and overall I've had a good experience. I am slowly beginning the process of weaning off because I believe it might be slowing my progress on the TMS front however. On the acupuncture front, I plan on giving it four or five seasons and then evaluate. Affirmations have been helping. "I'm safe, I'm healthy and I'm going to be fine." ( I also want to say I'm rich and am in great shape, and I'm going to clean the garage but unfortunately that's not true.) I swear it shut down some severe arm pain yesterday. I just kept saying it over and over and over again on a bike ride. Weird, but true.
    Dorado likes this.

Share This Page