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Is this tms or just overuse !

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Marksneck, Apr 28, 2023.

  1. Marksneck

    Marksneck Newcomer

    So I have been dealing with neck and back pain for almost 7 years. I believe it started after seeing a personal trainer and having muscle spasms after workouts which were beyond my ability. Doing max lifts and reps til exhaustion.

    I am a dentist and have to have poor posture to accommodate patients daily. I basically rely on back rollers and vibration to keep spasms under control and I have been able to keep major pain away with this.
    I feel like I live on my back roller and it dominates my life. I have definitive relief from it and hear loud pops in my back followed by immediate albeit temporary relief.

    my life is stressful, my own business and 3 kids under 7.

    The pops and cracks are real and I do feel instant relief.

    Is there a chance my back issues are from dentistry/stress/posture? Am I a TMS patient ? Help!
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hello Mark, and welcome to you (and to your neck).

    Well, this is a big big question that we can't actually answer, because we are not medical professionals, and as a medical professional yourself, I'm sure you get this, right? Be sure to read our disclaimer at the bottom of every page.

    That being said - I think most of us on this forum won't have a problem saying that undoubtedly some, probably most, and possibly all of your symptoms are, in fact, the result of the brain mechanism that we still call "TMS" in honor of John Sarno, MD.

    The first thing for you to do (since you don't mention anything that you've read or done) is to read at least one of Dr. Sarno's books. Healing Back Pain (1991, a revision of his original Mind Over Back Pain in 1984) is specific to back pain - I never read it, because back pain was a minor symptom when I was at my crisis point. You can't really go wrong with any of them, and some people read all of them (which I think is overkill and perhaps a way to avoid starting "the work). I certainly can recommend the one that I read, also his last one, The Divided Mind, which I think has these advantages:
    1) Dr Sarno's theories are as updated as he was able to achieve in his lifetime;
    2) He very efficiently condensed his theories in just four chapters while making it clear that what he originally called "TMS" undoubtedly includes many more conditions than just back and muscle pain (which he had previously updated in 1998 with The MindBody Prescription);
    3) He turned over the rest of the The Divided Mind book to five other MDs and a psychologist, for six individual chapters that enhance and build on Dr. Sarno's theories.

    TDM was published in 2007, so it's already over 15 years old, and there have been an astonishing number of neuroscientific and psychological advances in mindbody knowledge and practice since then. Dr. Sarno is still the best place to start, and besides, this forum was established in his honor!

    As you read Dr. Sarno, you can also look into starting our free SEP - the Structured Educational Program, which is on the main www.tmswiki.org site. There's no registration or sign-up, so you're completely on your own to get it done. It's broken down into easy "Days" with absolutely no obligation do get one done every day. Getting through the SEP faster is NOT better, so take the time to let the information sink in. Even if all you can manage is a couple Days a week, that's fine - just keep at it and don't let your frantic brain talk you into quitting. Doing this work absolutely can't hurt, and it has helped many people, myself included (I did the SEP in 2011).

    Another easy practice is to go to our Success Stories subforum and read at least one story per day. They are not only inspirational, they will give you a really good idea of the different ways in which people have recovered from an incredible array of symptoms, while at the same time you'll start to recognize what is similar about the stories (in other words - what it takes).
  3. Marksneck

    Marksneck Newcomer

    Thanks for your reply. I did in fact just finish Dr.Sarnos book today. I don’t really have pain, just pressure that Makes me want to get that pop relief from my back roller

    My thing is, if I was shoveling dirt all day and my shoulders hurt all the time,,,, that’s just overuse of muscles , right? That is probably not TMS, Just not sure if what I’m experiencing isn’t just wear and tear.
  4. GTfan

    GTfan Well known member

    From my experience as a runner, 9 times out of 10 if the soreness doesn't go away after a several days and you find yourself obsessing over the pain, then it's probably TMS
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  5. theacrobat

    theacrobat New Member

    After recovering from probable autoimmune disease using TMS methods, I regularly run 8.5 miles and lift weights for 80 minutes. Sometimes, I actually have LESS muscle aching and fatigue at the end of a workout than I did at the start. I get where you're coming from with the rollers etc, I used to do 1 hour of stretches a day and in hindsight it was just a placebo. I've had terrible aching legs the day after doing 150 heavy squats and one time while journalling the ache just disappeared completely. Ever since then I just laugh it off as TMS trickery. Personally, I think it is very hard to physically overdo it. Also, I had shoulder clicking for years that went away with this approach. Sarno says these clicking noises are insignificant. Re your point about wear and tear, many of Sarno's patients had multiple slipped discs and pretty bad osteoarthritis (clear wear and tear), yet felt no pain once treatment was complete. It doesn't have to be pain per se to be TMS...I resolved dizziness/vertigo, foot swelling, anxiety, a whole load of weird symptoms...let's just say that anything that distracts is worthy of suspicion. Bottom line:no matter how damaged/overworked a muscle is, it would be impossible to feel anything without nerves and nerves connect to the brain (the mind).
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  6. Bonnard

    Bonnard Peer Supporter

    There's one thing that can regularly come up when trying to deal with TMS-related symptoms. It's this fuzzy attempt to link today's symptoms (in your case these back spasms you're having) to some meaningful cause.
    Is it poor posture at the dental office? Did it start with that personal trainer who pushed way too hard (max lifts and reps till exhaustion)?
    Wouldn't anybody have these symptoms if they had the poor posture I have...that's needed for my profession? It's the same as anybody who overdoes it (the person shoveling dirt all day example).

    In my case, the doctor pointed to a decade+ old car accident. It had to be that accident that was causing my pain. There was just nothing else to point to...

    The symptoms I had--and maybe yours too--had nothing to do with my work or that old car accident....or whatever. My back pain was my brain trying to distract from some unpleasant emotions and stressors that I was having such a hard time dealing with.
    A couple things that helped me was completing some of the journaling and other exercises suggested in Sarno's book. And, writing about/paying attention to the pain. Not hyper-focusing on it, but just keeping track. For me, the pain jumped and moved (from back to leg to foot) in ways that made no sense.
    For you, keep track if the roller keeps working once you start the free SEP - the Structured Educational Program that was suggested above. Sometimes the brain moves the distraction around...
    I wish you well!!
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  7. Booble

    Booble Well known member

    My guess is it's a combo of posture, stress, TMS. The physical things give us a little discomfort and small twinges then our minds latch on to it and then we get stuck in the cycle and it gets worse and worse. I think the wear and tear is more wear and tear on your mind than on your muscles. As you said it's dominating your life. That's a good clue.
    JanAtheCPA likes this.

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