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Obsessed With my Neck

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Susan1111, Jan 1, 2016.

  1. Susan1111

    Susan1111 Well known member

    Hi All

    I am new to this site and fairly new to TMS.

    My neck has always been a source of tension and I always felt the need to move it around to release the tightness. I still do.
    This past summer things changed as I got a shooting pain in my mid to upper trapezoid muscles. This pain was diagnosed as a pinched nerve due to poor posture/forward head. I was treated by a PT with massage, stimulation, and a collar....a much longer story short after 2 months of treatment of there was some progress but not enough I still didn't feel right and I was obsessed with my neck. A massage therapist mentioned Dr Sarno. I went home and immediately bought his book on back pain. There I was I saw myself. With a bit more research I found Dr Rauchbaum.

    There is no longer any shooting pain but on occasion there is a burning feeling across my shoulders. This morning I did have a new pain on my shoulder to the point I couldn't make my bed without pain. I decided to lie down close my eyes breath and repeat that it was harmless TMS. I decided to do my workout and miraculously the pain was gone.
    However, as always my neck is still stiff and all I want to do is move it around to release the tightness. I've also convinced myself that moving my neck around has caused my shoulder pain.

    I know that the obsession with my neck is hindering my recovery. I don't know how to stop!
    I have started therapy and I do have another appointment with Dr Rauchbaum the end of Jan. I wanted to give myself time to accept TMS before seeing him again. My hope was that I could conquer this. Perhaps part of my problem is the little voice that says this is structural, you have severe degeneration and Arthritis. Dr Rauchbaum said not the reason TMS!
    Any advise would be very welcomed.
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2016
    Laughalot likes this.
  2. Anne Walker

    Anne Walker Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Susan,

    Welcome. I would search this site for information on keeping an evidence sheet. I found this very helpful in the beginning to help overcome my doubt. Also, as far as monitoring your pain, learning how to not focus on the pain and what it means(ie worrying about it) takes some practice and persistence. Start by noticing when you are doing it and practice redirecting. It is much easier to teach yourself how to think about something else than it is to try to control your thinking or stop thinking about something. When my brain was particularly stuck on thinking about the pain, I had a game on Luminosity that took a lot of concentration. I would play this game every day to force my mind to think about something else. It can be very difficult not to think about the pain when you are in pain. The whole trick to recovery is not just to stop obsessing, worrying and monitoring the pain, but also to try and focus on the emotional and psychological aspects of your life to uncover what your mind is distracting you from. Writing, journaling, meditation, reflecting, exploring, feeling, following a program such as SEP or Unlearn Your Pain, are all great activities to focus on rather than the pain. Remember, anytime you find yourself monitoring your pain levels, trying to decide if you have TMS based on whether you are successful in reducing or eliminating your pain, you are only giving into the TMS and potentially prolonging your recovery. You sound as though you are already making really great progress and will be pain free in no time.
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2016
    Laughalot likes this.
  3. Susan1111

    Susan1111 Well known member

    Anne thank you so very much for your reply and kindness. I think I have too much time on my hands to obsess. I have briefly looked at the SEP program although not good at structure perhaps that is why it may be good for me. I will look at it more seriously as not only have you recommended it I see it as quite popular among many. Now to busy my mind with Pilates, word games, reading a good book and getting ready for a vacation in the sun. Thoughts of anything but my neck.
  4. silentflutes

    silentflutes Peer Supporter

    lol we are in reverse direction. i reached to neck tightness and constantly shake my head from shooting pain upper trapezoid.
    please do read my post, since i am coming from trapezoid shoulder pain (where you are going) to neck pain (wheere you were).
  5. Laughalot

    Laughalot Peer Supporter

    Susan, it's great to have you here on the forum, I think you're in the perfect place! As for the SEP program - I've found it really helpful for actually exploring what my thoughts and feelings look like. There's just something about getting it all down on paper that makes it much easier to really SEE how my thoughts and feelings are related, and contribute to my TMS symptoms. I just finished Day 19 after starting a month and a half ago, so I definitely have not been keeping to a strict regimen with the program. Even with all the breaks in between, I'm learning a lot!
  6. Susan1111

    Susan1111 Well known member

    Laughalot much thanks for sharing your experience. Many people have told me to journal/write vs just think. I've started doing so as in wriing letters I will never send. I believe I need to make journaling a new habit.

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