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Is it still TMS if the pain is replicable?

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by learningmore, Dec 10, 2021.

  1. learningmore

    learningmore Peer Supporter


    I have a few cases of back/hip pain.

    Considering this, 90% of the time they don't annoy me. But when they do, it's horrible.

    The back can be be RELIABLY REPRODUCED by sitting a certain way.

    The hip pain can be RELIABLY REPRODUCED by sitting a certain way.

    Let me elaborate. If I sit a certain way, the pain will be terrible the following day. This makes me think it's not in my head, because 1) by the next day I've forgotten about it (to put it another way, I forgot that I sat a certain way so it's not like I think "oh, well I sat a certain way so it will hurt", it's more like the opposite... "why does my back hurt? Oh yeah, I was sitting like this the other day"), and 2) it happens every time. This makes me think it's structural. I had forgotten about a certain back pain I was having for months, until sure enough, I sat a certain way, and then the next day my back (lumbar region, right side) was super sore, and it lasted for days.

    I think I comprehend the basics of TMS. I have a very stressful life and recently learned my maternal parent is a narcissist, thus explaining many, many issues I have, anxiety, stress, etc. I'm quite the hypochondriac when it comes to health, spending much money out of pocket on various labwork, etc.

    Because this is predictable pain, I do not believe it could be considered TMS. It does not appear randomly.

    INQUIRY: Can TMS pain be considered definitely TMS if it only happens following certain movements?
  2. Baseball65

    Baseball65 Beloved Grand Eagle

    absolutely. Conditioning and circumstance.

    That checking and rechecking is all part of the overall picture of obsession and distraction. To be a good distraction it needs to be painful . However, with the way your describing it , you also have a strong sense of NOCEBO going on... that is, we expect pain , and it comes.
    Hit from behind whiplash is a great example. The person gets out of the accident and says "I feel fine". They are warned that the next day or so they ought to feel something, and they do. I have had several accidents since doing this work... I always remember to have a talk with my brain after them... I will BE OK! I am fine!

    ..and I am. Sitting, as Sarno said, is the most benign activity in the world. How can something so relaxing cause pain?

    Unlearning that is part of our journey, but it's doable.
    cammb33 likes this.
  3. learningmore

    learningmore Peer Supporter

    Possibly I didn't explain it well. I'm NOT expecting pain. The next day, I have forgotten having done anything that might cause the pain, and then it starts hurting, and I'm like "how come my back hurts... oh yeah, I sat a certain way recently."
  4. Baseball65

    Baseball65 Beloved Grand Eagle

    That is page one, paragraph one in Sarno's explanation of the fallacious connection between symptoms and onset/cause.

    EVERYBODY who has pain is wired like a lab rat to think (or say) "I wonder what I did to cause this?". That is the very first misunderstanding to straighten out if you are to recover from TMS... It doesn't matter if it's forward projecting like the Nocebo, or backward projecting like the detective, it's all wrong... and like any good distraction, it winds itself in confusing patterns so we believe it to be physical and treat it as such.

    Your recovery will have begun when , upon feeling anything that is like pain, your first thought is "I wonder what I am angry about that I am ignoring".... or "Why would a symptom be necessary right now? What angry or embarrassing thing is it protecting me from?"

    As long as we are pre-occupied with the physical, the system remains in place. It goes away when we stop believing in it and start getting a different impression of ourselves.
    miffybunny and backhand like this.
  5. Bitzalel Brown

    Bitzalel Brown Peer Supporter

    Learningmore ,
    Great choice of name, we all have so much more to learn and you are already teaching US with your excellent question !

    Our super intelligent brain will do what ever it takes for us to be convinced that our pain is real and it can't be psychosomatic. It will create pain that make sense and is tailor fitted to you. Our subconscious mind puts all the Hollywood actors to shame. If replaceable pain is what you believe is "real" your brain will find a way to mimic it. Just ask from the members of this forum for a list of TMS pains and ailments that their brains have come up in order to keep them distracted from those nasty emotions that haunt our subconscious mind. Remember "stop trying to feel better , get better at feeling!!!!"
  6. learningmore

    learningmore Peer Supporter

    Let me make sure I understand.

    Even though I DON'T get this pain unless I sit a certain way, and not until the next day when I have already forgotten about it* -- which makes me think it is related to sitting, thoracic issue, or coccyx issue, etc.; because this would be logical -- it might STILL be TMS because my cognition makes up this pain SO I THINK IT'S A PHYSICAL INJURY.

    *because if it happened quickly I would say "oh, I sat a certain way to make the pain. This makes sense. But because it happens the next day, I think... how come this is happening... what... what... oh yeah, I sat that way yesterday.
  7. learningmore

    learningmore Peer Supporter

    My understanding of TMS was:

    1. If it's a random pain that comes out of nowhere and has no definable creation, it's TMS.
    2. If it's connected to something (for example: I walk too far one day and my ankle hurts, or I bend wrong and my side hurts), then it's not TMS because it has a definable source.

    Type 1... fits the criteria, it moves around (obviously because it's related to something other than an injury)
    Type 2... doesn't fit the criteria. It has an obvious cause and is therefore some injury.

    Is this wrong?
  8. Cactusflower

    Cactusflower Well known member

  9. Baseball65

    Baseball65 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Pretty Much, yes.

    'No definable creation'... By what you know so far
    walking too far will make you sore if your not used to it..not painful.
    There is no such thing as 'bending wrong'.

    Sarno addressed all of it in his text. Rather than go though it piecemeal, read up..it's all explained there, and much better than I can. Your looking for a TL;DR treatment plan and this is a lot of reading absorbing it plan.
  10. learningmore

    learningmore Peer Supporter

    But let me make sure I'm getting it.

    I did some foam rolling tonight. An hour or so later, I started getting massive numbness and tingling in various parts of my body. Wisdom would say it's because I either did it too hard, or too much, or I'm injured to begin with and don't need to be foam rolling. Too much compression on a nerve = tingling and numbness. This was caused by the foam rolling. Much like placing a piece of paper in a flame catches it on fire. Cause and effect.

    What you are saying is that I'm not actually injured, and my mind only elected symptoms which my conscious thoughts would somehow relate to the foam rolling. So I didn't do it too hard (I didn't really do it that hard), or too much, and I'm not hurt. I don't mean hurt as in like damaged from doing it, I mean I'm not hurt like there's nothing wrong with my back or nerves thus the sensations I feel now are NOT due to a physical problem.

    Therefore, my brain goes "you foam rolled, we are producing symptoms that might happen if you had a spine injury and foam rolled on it. These sensations are going to make you think there is a problem with your back and nerves because you will consider it to be true"?
  11. Baseball65

    Baseball65 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Something like that, though it's not quite that simplistic.
    THAT however, is a bunch of conditioning based on a lot of other experiences you have had. If you look at the work of Pavlov, the dogs actually salivated after only a few episodes of intentional conditioning. People might have a conditioned response after ONE episode because our mind does so much more reinforcing than a dog whose life is experiential based and doesn't have the ability to 'advertise in their own head', or be advertised to.

    Also... modern medicine agrees 100% with what you wrote. You have absorbed their admonitions and reasoning excellently...and are having the kind of experience that their treatment gives...a shitty one.

    Our ego's like to think "If I can wrap my INTELLECT around this idea , I will somehow have a different experience" but alas , that is not the case. In fact, our ego's tell us we are immune to conditioning because that might mean there is something going on in me that my ego can't fix (my waking conscious mind)

    Virtually every person who arrives here has had thoughts like you wrote here. I did. I knew more about modern structural based medicine than some of the people who treated me...all to my own detriment. I had to unlearn it all to have the experience i have now which is an awesome pain free one.

    Now that you mention it, I hit about 200-300 baseballs in a cage yesterday. I hadn't hit in a few weeks (the seasons over)...according to your logic, I ought to be sore.(or in pain) But I am not. I have a congenital birth defect, a broken vertabrae in my back (healed on its own) stenosis and all kinds of other 'anomalies'... but I am fine.

    Because I read and absorbed the text....and it lives in my life
  12. learningmore

    learningmore Peer Supporter

    You should only be sore if you did more than your body can handle.

    My logic isn't that you get sore if you do something. It's you get sore if you do something that further damages an existing injury (like me and sitting a certain way). Most of the time I am not pressuring that injury so it doesn't bother me. But when I do (sit a certain way) it strikes back for days. Because it's an injury. And I'm doing something to bother it. From my (apparently wrong?) TMS model, it would only be TMS if I did nothing and that still bothered it. Maybe I just found the wrong pages talking about TMS. As I said, my computation was "if you have an injury caused by nothing, then it could be emotional. If you have pain that moves around, then it could be emotional. If you have pain that comes and goes, it could be emotional." If you have an injury that is aggravated by specific things (like pushing on a bruise hurts because you're hurt, but pushing on that same area when you don't have a bruise doesn't) then it's an injury. My pain fits a textbook sample of nerve pain, following the same paths and everything. Pinched nerve, whatever. It's not caused by nothing, it's caused by sitting a certain way. It doesn't go away when I forget about it (it reminds me it's there), but sometimes it's lessened because I'm focusing on different things.

    I'm not saying it's the case. I'm ensuring you have a correct comprehension of my "logic." Then you can tell me why I'm wrong.

    Glad you're feeling significantly improved!

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