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Dr. Clarke Help with IBS and bloating

Discussion in 'Ask a TMS Therapist' started by Guest, May 24, 2015.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    This question was submitted via our Ask a TMS Therapist program. To submit your question, click here.


    so, i can't seem to find anything written about this anywhere or even in dr.sarno's books, so i'm hoping anyone here can help me out. it's about my bouts with IBS, more specifically about hemorrhoids and gas/bloating.

    i understand IBS is an equivalent of TMS, but i'm having a hard time convincing my mind/body of that. here's what i'm experiencing:

    1) i appear to be extremely sensitive to cold. this is probably the result of decades of conditioning (i'm 39, and i remember avoiding cold in my teens). let me elaborate on this:

    - for one, if i walk on cold surfaces in my bare feet, i will get gas and stomach cramps. i need to wear something at all times.

    - if i hold a cold bottle of water in my hands, i will get gas.

    - if i sit on a cold hard surface, i will get gas.

    - if it's foggy outside, i need to add extra layers or i will get gas.

    2) i appear to be extremely susceptible to hemorrhoids. this goes back to when i first felt the symptoms of TMS, so it came with TMS. let me also elaborate on this:

    - if i sit on a certain soft surface for about 3-4 hours, i open myself to getting a hemorrhoid. some surfaces appear to be less inducing; certain couches/ certain chairs.

    - a typical work day of 8 hours will mean i need to use preperation H everyday, or i will very likely get a hemorrhoid.

    - if i crouch-down (like a frog), i feel my anus getting very uncomfortable; a sign of an impending hemorrhoid.

    so, there you have it. i hope you can help me figure this out, and maybe ask around. i know for sure it's TMS; my analysis of my life seems to reflect this. what i should also mention is - when i get an episode of gas, the pain varies from mild to "i think i'm going to die" pain. when that extreme pain comes on - i break-out in body sweats, turn a pale colour, have to poo (to let it out) and/or vomit. these occasions are probably the worst pains i've ever had and when it's over after about an hour or two, i can't believe i had survived such an incident. it's that bad. i am so afraid of it ever happening again that i need to bundle-up in layers around fans, open windows, foggy environments and never leave my shirt un-tucked into my pants. a hot-water bottle on my abdomen or warming my insides seems to relieve the pain and it's onsets. i believe this to be the result of decades of conditioning.

    my name is raz and please let me know if you or anyone else you know might have come across what's ailing me.

    thanks for taking the time to read this eh, it's really appreciated. and i hope to hear back from you. i'll answer any questions you might have and maybe we can reverse this.

    thanks again!

    ~ r a z
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 3, 2015
  2. davidclarke

    davidclarke Author & Physician

    Hello Raz,

    Your symptoms are most consistent with cramping of the large intestine and/or rectum (which are not under voluntary control) and probably some tensing of the anus which is under voluntary control but may be occurring unconsciously. I can't think of a purely physiologic reason for this to happen in response to the stimuli you describe (cold temperatures, sitting in certain locations) so I agree that a psychophysiologic (PPD/TMS) explanation is most likely. The first question that comes to mind is whether you might have had an adverse experience involving cold in the past (possibly the remote past, possibly just prior to the onset of your cold-related symptoms) though the psychological link to cold might be quite indirect and therefore challenging to uncover.

    The most likely route to relief will involve uncovering and then addressing the psychosocial root causes that commonly underlie PPD as you are clearly already doing. Since I happen to be a gastroenterologist most of my PPD patients had GI symptoms so you could take a look at my site www.stressillness.com for more info. However, the particular nature of a person's symptoms is of minor importance in comparison to the process of finding the causative issues and any of the books listed on this site will help with that.

    Best wishes for a rapid and full recovery. You have come to the right place.

    David Clarke
    Clinical Assistant Professor of Gastroenterology Emeritus, Oregon Health & Science University
    President, Psychophysiologic Disorders Association

    Any advice or information provided here does not and is not intended to be and should not be taken to constitute specific professional or psychological advice given to any group or individual. This general advice is provided with the guidance that any person who believes that they may be suffering from any medical, psychological, or mindbody condition should seek professional advice from a qualified, registered/licensed physician and/or psychotherapist who has the opportunity to meet with the patient, take a history, possibly examine the patient, review medical and/or mental health records, and provide specific advice and/or treatment based on their experience diagnosing and treating that condition or range of conditions. No general advice provided here should be taken to replace or in any way contradict advice provided by a qualified, registered/licensed physician and/or psychotherapist who has the opportunity to meet with the patient, take a history, possibly examine the patient, review medical and/or mental health records, and provide specific advice and/or treatment based on their experience diagnosing and treating that condition or range of conditions.

    The general advice and information provided in this format is for informational purposes only and cannot serve as a way to screen for, identify, or diagnose depression, anxiety, or other psychological conditions. If you feel you may be suffering from any of these conditions please contact a licensed mental health practitioner for an in-person consultation.

    Questions may be edited for brevity and/or readability.

  3. Rory Calhoune

    Rory Calhoune New Member

    hi David! it's raz. (i'm Rory as well haha ) i'll look at your site for sure.

    yea, lately i've been trying to think of a reasonable explaination from my memories. this might shed some light on things:

    - i remember growing up with carpetted floors, until my family moved into a house with marble floors. my mom was very OCD with cleaning them; along with other things. i do remember i began tip-toeing along the just-mopped floors, trying to not mess-up my mom's labourous work.

    - also remember coming home from school and sitting on the floor to eat my lunch on a table in the t.v. room.

    i need to mention that the house i grew-up in was a very toxic environment ("unqualified"/insensitive mom-issues, abusive brother-issues) - this probably cemented an ill-feeling into the whole thing i think. possibly making me feel guilty/angry due to having to walk on the cold/wet floors. and eating on the floor while being stressed-out by my surroundings sounds like it's a likely contributor. let me state again, my childhood home was not idealic; i did not lead a very happy childhood.

    the hemmeroids might be the result of feeling stressed during a peak time of work for me before i started feeling other TMS symptoms. i worked long hours and always was seated next to my computer. sometimes all through-out the day and into the next morning. this went on for about a month or two (common in my line of work).

    so, my hemmoroid issue is probably the result of anxiety/unconcious anger directed at my work for having to sit through those long stressful days. and my sensitivity to cold is the result of my anxiety/unconcsious anger directed to my mom for having to avoid conflict.

    am i on the right track?
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2015
  4. davidclarke

    davidclarke Author & Physician

    Good chance you have some key insights there. When you feel ready, you might try writing your mom a letter (unmailed) expressing your emotions and thoughts fully.
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2015
  5. Rory Calhoune

    Rory Calhoune New Member

    i'll be doing that. thanks doc!!
  6. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Rory. David Clarke has given you some excellent advice and I would follow it if I were you.
    Your childhood memories of walking on cold floors and the family strife sure sound like TMS
    repressed emotions. Following TMS knowledge penicillin, you are going to heal. Believe it 100 percent.
  7. PamD

    PamD Peer Supporter

    Hi Rory, I especially like the letter writing suggestion. I find it helps in many situations that can't be or should not be directly confronted. So great to have the experts here to guide and support. Thanks Dr. Clarke

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