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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Day 1 Introduction

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by nimitz, Aug 17, 2014.

  1. nimitz

    nimitz New Member


    I'm 20 years old and had a lot of health problems in the last years, especially since the begin of my puberty. I always had a lot of allergies (dust, pollen, animal hair, nuts, legumes, milk, wheat, oat,...), allergic asthma, fatigue, headaches, neck and back pain, nausea, anxiety, chronic ear infection,... and 1 1/2 years ago I started to have pain in my left leg and foot which gave me my first panic attack. Last summer I got severe gastritis, lost way too much weight, then got gut problems that made my intolerant to fructose, lactose and histamine. Over the years I lost all trust in my body and in doctors who where never able to help me become better.

    The gastritis was my wake-up call so to speak and I started to think a lot about how I think, what's going on inside me, psychology, physical health etc. After I got rid of the medication my stomach/gut doctor gave me that made everything even worse and started to eat a very low carbohydrate diet consisting of meat, non starchy vegetables and fat my stomach/gut problems, insomnia,... got better and then suddenly my tendon was inflamed without doing anything and the orthopaedist tried to heal it for 2 months without success. I was so frustrated that I stopped eating my diet and my stomach problems returned.

    After sorting other stuff out I found Dr. Sarno in the suggestions while watching a TED talk on youtube. I bought The Divided Mind and it made perfect sense and was consistent with the things I learned in the months before. I have several of the mentioned personality traits, some of them caused by the way my parents raised me, my symptoms shift around and disappear when I'm distracted, there is a long list of things that make and made me really angry and sad now and in my childhood without me being able to express it, etc. In hindsight it is also very clear that the begin of most of the problems started while I was really stressed.

    Asthma, fatigue, anxiety, ear infections, nausea, neck pain: begin of puberty which was a really painful event for me, got worse as puberty progressed

    First leg pain: conflict with my parents + exams

    Gastritis: exams + a wedding where I had to wear a ball gown + no free time because of a practical uni thing I hated

    Inflammed tendon + leg/foot pain: stomach problems and other symptoms got better (symptom imperative) + exams

    All the things got worse in the last year when I got close to finding the things I was hiding from myself to the point I couldn't think about anything except my symptoms.

    I'm sure that my psyche is responsible for most of my symptoms, the only thing where I'm sceptic are my allergies (especially the nuts and legumes allergy) because I had them since I can remember and my mother said I always had them. My dust and pollen allergy got a lot better in the last years though.

    I'm not sure what to do with my stomach though, the test said that my gut is inflammed, the gut lining damaged and according to some new test is leaky gut. I have no doubt that my psyche is the cause and that it gets worse when I'm afraid of certain food, but on the other hand I really think that a paleo/low carbohydrate diet is healthier in the long run (even when you don't have stomach problems) and I don't know what to do now. Eat everything I like to show my brain that I'm not afraid and it's okay or do the diet because I think it's in general a good idea just as getting enough sleep is a good idea?
  2. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Nimitz.
    Okay, it seems sure to me that all your problems are from TMS, from your childhood and perfectionist, goodist personality. Most of us
    have all of those.

    You found your way to Dr. Sarno and TMS so you are on your way to healing. You have to believe all your symptoms are from TMS
    and nothing structural. Doctors may mean well but often can be misleading or wrong.

    Read the success forum posts and the videos on this web site.

    Consider yourself very lucky you discovered TMS at the young age of 20. I'm 84 and didn't discover it until 2 years ago.
    After a few weeks of journaling about my childhood stresses and my perfectionist and goodist personality, I got rid of very
    bad pack pain.

    As for diet, the healthiest is to stop eating any junk food and eat mainly fresh fruits and vegetables, chicken, turkey, fish.
    Avoid candy, cookies and cake, pastas, but go ahead and treat yourself to the "bad" stuff once in a while, if you want.

    I hope you will start the Structured Education Program, free on this web site. It's a guide toward healing.

    Keep us informed about your you're doing.

    You've come to the right place for healing.
  3. nimitz

    nimitz New Member

    Hello Walt Oleksy,

    Thank you for your kind and encouraging words. Do you think that the Allergies are also part of TMS? If so how do you work on them if they nearly killed you a couple of times?
  4. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, nimitz. You're very welcome. We are all here to help each other.
    I definitely think your allergies are from TMS, so work on that the same ads you do any pain.
    Dr. Sarno says allergies are just another way our unconscious mind beat us up so that we
    work on our repressed emotions and perfectionist and goodist personality traits.

    My friend Herbie just posted a video he made that I hope you will watch.
    It really explains TMS and how to heal.

  5. Nmiller

    Nmiller New Member

    Hi! I'm 28 and am suffering from repetitive strain injury in my arms, shoulders, hands, and wrists. It all started in April as I was working on finishing my Masters in Business. I was up all night working in Excel and finishing up a Business Plan for one of my classes when I felt an excruciating pain in my hands, wrists, and arms. So excruciating that I couldn't continue that evening and the pain lasted a few days. In addition to school, I spent most of my days lying on the couch and working on my laptop as a social media freelancer which I had been doing since 2012. After the pain eventually went away and I finished up grad school successfully in May without another episode. However, to fulfill my empty time slot, I started working more and filling in those hours with computer work. By mid-June, the pain had come back and even fiercer than ever. Things like typing, no longer set things off. I was just in constant pain as soon as I woke up in the morning, especially in my arms, hands and fingers. The pain was like a constant burning sensation (as if I had been doing intense exercises and fatigued my muscles) that just wouldn't go away and couldnt be relieved. I could barely drive it was that bad! So I went to a sports medicine facility. They took xrays of my hands (which were not inflammed), asked me to move my hands and wrists and fingers in various positions as if it lead to a specific pain (no this action doesn't hurt specifically, my whole arm is just on fire!), gave me a cortisol shot in my butt (no pain relief), and prescribed me Naproxen - NSAIDs (wait, I thought there was no inflammation?? ) (and again, no pain relief), and told me to partake in occupational therapy and come back in a couple of weeks. I was pissed. So I stopped taking the pills, never talked to an occupational therapist and didn't go back for that appointment. So I tried accupuncture a couple of times. The pain was relieved for a few hours but always returned. I did a bunch of online research and the results seemed pretty dismal. No one knew what the cause was or how to officially treat it. I just knew that I didn't want to blow thousands of dollars on playing "what's your diagnosis" with 20 different doctors who had no real solutions. So I found refrences to Dr. Sarno's "Mind Body Prrscription" and decided to give it a try. I read the book, highlighted important areas, and tried to read them as often as I could. The symptoms got better - as I no longer had a constant pain that lasted the entire day. Things just tended to get worse at the end of the day, as I continued to do my daily work grind on the computer and smartphone (which is pretty much my entire livelihood). Since the pain didn't fully go away, I continued this computer program that forced you take short breaks every few hours, which I thought would just be a good practice in general. I had stopped reviewing those notes that I had highlighted from Dr. Sarno's book because I thought that that's all I needed and that I fully understood the true mental cause of the pain. I continued to take African drum lessons, play the piano, and practice yoga because I would not let it overcome me and take away the things that I enjoy. The pain is still there. Some days are worse, it's always worse at the end of the day, and of course, the pain shifts from my arm to my hand to right behind my elbow, to the top of my shoulder, to my shoulder blade to my hand or fingers. Sometimes it likes to throw in a foot pain every now in then. I understand that I need to scream at myself and tell my brain I know what it's doing - I just hate calling myslf stupid and being negative towards myslf and always thinking about negative emotions that I'm feeling. It can be really draining, especially when I'm a optimist who tries to look for the good in everything instead of the bad

    Anyway that's my story.

    Personality traits: people pleaser, puts a lot of oressure on herself, puts a lot of pressure on herself thinking it's pressure from other people, have high expectations for myself , want to constantly fulfill expectations from others.
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2014
  6. IrishSceptic

    IrishSceptic Podcast Visionary

    great and keep going > you have figured it out very early on which is great.
    I developed lower back pain in 2007 and I put my faith in physios, doctors,everything structural that I could think of. I was tested for a myriad of conditions and got no solid diagnoses.

    and still 7 years later it has moved to my neck,shoulders,knees,feet,elbows.
    This time last year I was contemplating suicide and in deep depression as I couldn't remember a day without pain and March of this year my pain specialist told me I would just have to like it or lump it.
    In Dec 2013 I bought Healing back pain after incredulously reading the reviews on Amazon and said ''hey £5 isn't gonna break the bank!''
    didn't get reading it properly until two months ago as I was intensely skeptical but my personality seemed to fit the mould and I was laughing reading the book. since then I've read some of the other books and I am working with a clinical psychologist. I'm reasonably confident I can put it to bed once and for all.
    Its truly criminal this hasn't become more mainstream. Some dismiss Sarno as a kook but the guy has proper credentials and if he had wanted to make tonnes of money of a ''miracle cure'' he could have done so easily. it takes a major shift in understanding but current pain science theory is getting closer...the sad thing is, most of the research conducted is aimed at finding a pill instead of actual cures.
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  7. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Welcome to the forum, Nimitz, and I also congratulate you for discovering Dr. Sarno so early in your life! If you ever have a family, imagine being able to raise your kids with this knowledge! That just blows my mind. But I digress.

    You're certainly not the first person to ask this important question. One of our members recently conjectured that there are two types of allergic responses - one is TMS and should be treated as such, but if you are at risk of anaphylaxis, you should not test your TMS theories without expert medical supervision.

    If you enter "allergies" in the forum search box, you'll find all of our discussions and hopefully some helpful advice!

    You also mentioned that your digestive system, in particular, has suffered from years of stress and perhaps abuse by medications. Using your newfound TMS knowledge and by reintroducing foods thoughtfully, I think it's probably a good thing to give your body time to heal and become strong, as long as you are convinced that you WILL heal and you WILL become strong - because this is all possible if you believe in it. However, expecting too much at once puts the pressure on - and I suspect that what you need is to take the pressure OFF. The most important thing you'll need to learn to do is stop watching the calendar, learn to live in the moment, and give yourself a break.

    Dr. Gabor Mate MD, in his beautifully-written and compassionate book "When The Body Says No" describes in detail how the long-term stress of repressed emotions affects the physiological processes in our bodies. You can certainly heal, but you do that by giving yourself time, care, and love.

    Keep us posted,

  8. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi NMiller, and welcome! As IrishSceptic says, you're clearly on the right track, and the fact that you found some relief after reading just one book is success - obviously not nearly as much as you would like, but it's a good start. And because you posted here under Day 1 of the Structured Educational Program, I assume that you're making the same next step as nimitz, so congratulations for choosing to do that, and I hope you'll keep posting as you progress! Most of us here did the SEP because reading our first Dr. Sarno book was only the first step. My first was his last book, "The Divided Mind" in which he presents an updated overview of his theories in just four chapters, then turns the book over to six other health professionals (five MDs and a therapist) for their take on TMS/MBS/PPD or whatever you want to call your particular group of symptoms.

    By participating in the SEP and this forum, you'll come across a ton of other resources on your TMS "journey" as I prefer to call it, although often it's more like a battle bangheada (picture of what NM quite rightly does NOT want to do to herself ;))

  9. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Nimitz and NMiller, check out this new post by Forest, based on an excerpt from advice recently offered by one of our wonderful "resident" therapist members, Derek Sapico:
    This is a really important topic, I think both of you have brought up points in your personal stories that may be relevant to this discussion.


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