1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
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Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by SME61, Jun 24, 2016.

  1. SME61

    SME61 Peer Supporter

    I am just starting on the road to recovery, and thought I would provide some background first.
    Diagnosed with herniated disk L5/S1 one year ago confirmed on MRI. I could not walk for more than a few hundred feet for 6 weeks.
    8 months of physical therapy, chiropractor and two epidural steroid injections, visit to orthopedic surgeon and physiatrist.
    I am much better than I was one year ago. I am "fully functional" according to my doctors. However, I still have nagging pain on the level of 2-3 in my lower leg. Recently, I have been diagnosed with hip bursitis as well and had an injection for this as well. It is a little better.

    I ordered Dr. Sarno's books out if curiosity and desperation, I just want my life back!

    The material resonates with me for the most part, I am under financial pressure (sending a daughter to college), am a perfectionist and certainly have self esteem issues and repressed anger. I have a very supportive psychologist and Physical Therapist who believe my pain is caused by emotions to a large extent.

    So, I am willing to give it a try and see what happens.

    I have not been officially diagnosed with TMS though, does it matter?

    There's one doctor in Boston who may treat this condition Eugeneio Martinez, his reviews are mixed online. There's another in New Jersey Dr. Gwozdz who I am on a wait list for.

    Wondering if I need the lecture and diagnosis to start this treatment.

    Any thoughts or support appreciated as I start this journey!

  2. Ines

    Ines Well known member

    Hi Steve,

    Welcome. No, you do not need a dr. to tell you that you have TMS but, you should always see a dr. prior to rule out anything serious. For example, I am doing this program for migraines and I have had an MRI to make sure it was not a tumor or anything like that.

    Keep us posted.

  3. SME61

    SME61 Peer Supporter

    Thanks, Ines. I have been checked-out by a doctor and it's just a herniated disk for now and bursitis. Nothing, what the doctor's think is serious!

    Thanks again.
    Ines likes this.
  4. Gigi

    Gigi Well known member

    Hi Steve. Welcome!
    I agree with Ines that as long as you've been evaluated by an MD (to rule out anything that n eds medical attention) then NO, you don't need a TMS dr to confirm that you're have TMS.
    Many of us saw ourselves on every page of one of Dr. Sarno's books, and realized that we had TMS. I even called Dr. Sarno in the late '80s and was ready to travel to the east coast to attend one of his seminars. He told me that as long as I accepted the TMS Diagnosis 100%, there was no need to come. I appreciated him saving me all the time and money, and was able to heal just by reading his books.
    Today we have this TMSwiki and the Structured Education Program to help us recover--thank God!
    Blessings on your journey of recovery.
  5. SME61

    SME61 Peer Supporter

    Hi Gigi
    Thanks for your response to my day 1 posting. I generally need reassurance, so I might see a doctor to be officially diagnosed. I seen 3 different doctors (primary care, physiatrist and an orthopedic surgeon). My primary care tried oral steroids at first, then did an MRI, then sent me to physical therapy. After the MRI I was told I had a herniated disk. To my primary care' s credit he told me that my main problem was anxiety over my back injury after 7 months of physical therapy. He did not mention TMS though. The physiatrist has talked to me about my structural problems only and says that although I am improving I may have to live with my pain (1-3) on the pain scale. Finally the orthopedic surgeon told me that in all tests performed in his office I has no neurological problems and was fully functional except for the disk herniation and some stenosis on the MRI so he would not operate and I should live my life normally. He offered no solution. Now that I look back on this, they are telling me I am fine, but no official TMS diagnosis.

    Is this what others have found with regard to the medical community?

    At least by joining the program and going through these exercises, I have some hope that TMS is the culprit.

    Thanks for listening!

  6. Janine28

    Janine28 Peer Supporter

    Hi Steve,
    Welcome to the SEP program! I too was concerned about self-diagnosis when I first began the program and asked about this. The responses I got were very encouraging. You can see that forum discussion at: http://www.tmswiki.org/forum/threads/self-diagnosis.12197/#post-64380 (Day 10 - Self Diagnosis?)

    After receiving the encouragement, I found that self-diagnosis was actually critical to my healing! I had medicalized by condition for so long and looked outside of myself for answers for my debilitating pain, that when I finally believed in my own ability to assess the situation and received the amazing support of this community, the healing was very swift.

    All the best to you as you embark upon this healing journey!
  7. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, SME61.

    Welcome to this TMS community. The SEProgram is wonderful. I healed from severe back pain after learning about TMS and took the SEProgram. I discovered repressed emotions from my boyhood. I also learned how being a perfectionist and worrier can cause physical and emotional pain. I've learned now to take everything so seriously and to relax and take one day at a time. Living in the present helps us to let go of the past and not worry about the future.

    It will help you a lot to practice deep breathing and to meditate.

    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 that is not caused by anything structural.

    The RR, practiced once twice a day for 10, 15, or 20 minutes has a profound positive effect on the subconscious mind, relieving or curing everything from anxiety, hypertension, headaches, fatigue, nervousness, dizziness, high blood pressure, insomnia, stomach problems, all forms of pain including backaches, abdominal pain, muscle pain, neck, arm, and leg pain, and relieves side affects from cancer and AIDS.

    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 practiced, 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 “Calm” or “Peace,” or add the faith or spiritual element by saying a favorite religious word or prayer. Breathe naturally or incorporate Deep Breathing by breathing in through the mouth to inflate the stomach, suck in the stomach while holding the breath for a few seconds, then say the word when you exhale through the mouth.

    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 yourself, “Oh, well,” and go back to repeating your chosen word.

    My "word" is a prayer: "God loves me and is protecting me." I say it a few times and go right to sleep. If my mind wanders onto other things, I tell myself"Oh, well," and repeat my mantra silently while deep breathing.

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

  8. SME61

    SME61 Peer Supporter

    Hi All
    Thanks for the words of encouragement!
    I do have a few quick questions concerning what happens as I begin my day.

    1). When I wake up I feel tightness in my back and pain in my legs. After an hour or so it goes away or at least lessens.

    It's difficult to believe completely in the TMS philosophy when I start out every morning like this.

    1). Has this happened to you?
    2). How did you overcome your doubts skepticism
    and thoughts that you would not get better?

    I should add that I have been feeling better during the day and sometimes, I almost forget I have pain.


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