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Intermittent, Pulsating Pain Behind Right Ear

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by GardenOfFruit, Jul 9, 2019.

  1. GardenOfFruit

    GardenOfFruit New Member


    I am a 29-year-old man and am writing to request your help and support regarding pain I have had for the past couple days in the area of my right sternocleidomastoid muscle (i.e. near bony protuberance behind my right ear).

    I am a healthy, fit individual, and I workout 5-6 times per week (mix of weights and cardio). I learned about TMS five years ago after struggling with debilitating bilateral chronic forearm pain for two a half years. Once I accepted the diagnosis, I regained the functionality in my arms in just a few weeks. Since healing, I have experienced a variety of different symptoms over the past few years, including knee pain, achilles pain, lower back pain, groin muscle pain (which I got help with in this forum!), and frequent urination. I have understood these episodes to be examples of the symptom imperative, and simply by recognizing this, each of these symptoms has resolved in a matter of weeks. Each time I experience a symptom, I read another TMS book to deepen my understanding of the process. Thus far, I have read John Sarno’s four books, Mark Sopher’s "To Be or Not To Be... Pain-Free,” Steve Ozanich’s “The Great Pain Deception,” and Howard Schubiner's "Unlearn Your Pain." I also recently completed 10 months of psychotherapy to help me cope with two major life stressors--finding a new job and finding a partner.

    The current pain I am experiencing has an interesting quality. The best way I can describe it is as a series of pulses that arrive at irregular intervals. The pulses of pain last only a second or two, but they are intense enough to make me wince. Sometimes the pulses are a minute apart. Other times they are 30 minutes apart. They always seem to catch me off guard.

    I think the pain is TMS for several reasons. First, I have experienced a variety of other TMS symptoms as noted above, and I understand that my body never gives up its strategy. So, it would be no surprise to me that this is just another way my body is trying to distract me from my repressed emotions. Second, the pain started Sunday afternoon, which was a stressful day for me. I went to a BBQ with a friend of mine who has a very attractive partner, and I was angry and jealous the entire time. Furthermore, on this same day, I was preparing for a conversation with my boss on resigning from my job. (I had this conversation yesterday with my boss, and it went well.). Third, while watching TV last night (Monday) before going to sleep, I felt relaxed, and I had none of the pain pulses for over an hour or so. This correlation between low stress and pain abatement makes me think this is TMS. Fourth, I had a traumatic bicycling injury last summer and fractured my jaw and a few bones in my right ear. The pain from this injury has long since subsided, and I have regained my full functionality. I think my body may be trying to trick me by placing the pain near the site of this old injury. Fifth, I am about to start a new job, which will involve some travel and is stressing me out.

    I am trying to get in to see my ear, nose, and throat doctor ASAP, who treated me after the bicycling injury, to rule out a physical cause here.

    I appreciate any help/insights you can provide. This pain has me worried.

    Thank you.
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2019
  2. GardenOfFruit

    GardenOfFruit New Member


    I realized I never followed up, and I just want to close the loop on this. After posting the message above, I saw an ear/nose/throat doctor later in the day (on 7/9/19), and he said my ear looks fine. The pain disappeared after my visit with him, thereby suggesting to me that the pain was TMS.
    Piano Mom and TG957 like this.
  3. Guero Triste

    Guero Triste Peer Supporter

    I realize this an old thread but wanted to chime in. I am dealing with this exact thing right now.

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