Many people posting in the subforums still doubt 100 percent that their symptoms are from TMS, repressed emotions and/or perfectionist or “goodist” personalities. I went back to Dr. Sarno’s groundbreaking book, Healing Back Pain, and will quote him that most if not all back and other pain is from TMS and is not structural. He reminds us that doctors, family, and friends may tell us that if we have back pain, we should not bend, slouch, sit on soft chairs or couches, do not arch the back, swim the crawl or breast stroke, do not wear high heels, running is bad for the spine, never run on hard surfaces (my chiropractor told me this), weak back muscles cause back pain, avoid all vigorous sports. Wrong, Sarno says about all of that. “Because of a basic misconception of the cause of neck, shoulder, and back pain, there is a monumental body of misinformation to which people are exposed and which contributes substantially to the severity anode longevity of their pain. “The truth is that the back is a rugged structure, fully capable of taking us through our daily lives, and then some. We exercise our backs constantly, for the act of being up and about requires that the postural muscles, which paradoxically are the only ones involved in TMS, are always active in keeping the trunk upright on the legs, and the head on the trunk. And if we take a brisk walk, or job, or run, those muscles are exercised even more. They are undoubtedly the strongest muscles in the body. “When I hear that a professional athlete, a tennis player for example, has to pull out of a tournament because of back pain, I marvel at the naiveté that suggests that he or she has a deficient back. Such a thing was practically unheard of thirty years ago in tennis, golf, baseball, football or basketball. It is commonplace today.” [I am reminded that golf legend Tiger Woods has dropped out of tournaments because of supposed back pain. He needs to know about TMS because he has been having personal problems that are triggers for pain.] “Years ago,” Dr. Sarno says, “I saw a famous woman athlete who was having pain in the very muscles she used most in her sport. Fortunately, she immediately grasped the concept of TMS and her pain promptly disappeared. “In my experience, structural abnormalities of the spine rarely cause back pain. That ought not surprise us for this epidemic of back pain is very new. Somehow the human race managed to get through the first million years or so of its evolution without a problem, but if the structural diagnoses are correct, something happened to the spine during the last evolutionary eye blink and it has begun to fall apart. “This idea is untenable. One suspects that these spine abnormalities have always been there but were never blamed for pain because there was no pain to blame them for. Fifty years ago back pain was not very common but, more importantly, nobody took it seriously. The epidemic of back pain is due to the enormous increase in the incidence of TMS during the past thirty years, and, ironically, the failure of medicine to recognize and diagnose it has been a major factor in that increase. Instead of TMS the pain has been attributed primarily to a variety of structural defects of the spine. “It is essential to know that almost all of the structural abnormalities of the spine are harmless.” [This reminds me that my father suffered from lower back pain for many years which doctors called “lumbago.” He didn’t know that his back pain was not caused by anything structural but from TMS. He had great anxiety because of money worries back in the 1930s Great Depression. He was not alone in that worry because millions of others had the same problem, as millions today have in the current bad economy.] Dr. Sarno says that emotional stress from financial worries are often the cause of TMS back and other pain. If we stop worry and fear over money concerns, we can survive these hard times and our confidence will help our backs to feel better. TMS “penicillin” will cure us.