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very informative central sensitization article

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by NicoleB34, Aug 9, 2017.

  1. NicoleB34

    NicoleB34 Well known member

    So i read this, and i think it does a really good job explaining sensitivity in the nervous system, and chronic pain. I was a tad put off by their criticisms of mind/body approach (they said it can be helpful, but almost too simplistic. you'll have to read it to know what i mean) it does talk about how there is hope in calming the nervous system, and how if this issue that we likely all have (central sensitization) is to be "cured", it would be done so by bringing the nervous system down. I believe mind/body approach is the way to do this, but traditional medical science has not quite caught up with that as you all know :)
    Anyway, it's a very good thing that doctors are catching on that chronic pain is a BRAIN issue, and less likely tissue related. We can only hope more doctors figure this out.

    https://www.painscience.com/articles/pain-is-weird.php (Pain is Weird)
  2. stradivarius

    stradivarius Peer Supporter

    Thanks for sharing this Nicole. I think what I get from this is that it bypasses the "is it or it not tms?" question. Even if you do have a bit of damage in your body you can still reduce your pain levels and will benefit from self-soothing, as long as you don't have some significant structural problem you are probably safe to gradually increase activity as long as you don't go crazy. Not that this advice is right for everyone, it's just how I interpret it myself.
  3. NicoleB34

    NicoleB34 Well known member

    yeah, they dont mention TMS. This is still written in the opinion of a scientist, and i think TMS/Mind-body still is a bit far away from becoming a thing in traditional medicine. I am glad however, that even mainstream doctors and scientists are starting to understand that chronic pain is often a "brain" issue, even if they dont know how to fix it yet.

    My pelvic PT (yes i still see her, long story) is a strong believer in treating a highly sensitized body in a gentle way. She usually argues against very aggressive massage that pushes the boundaries from feeling good to hurting. We should be encouraged to move and exercise, but create a comfortable safe atmosphere.
  4. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Thanks for posting this article. There are many correlates with the new @Alan Gordon LCSW program, I especially appreciate the 'hallucinating brain' aspect as I remember well the first time Alan referred to pain as a 'kinaesthetic illusion'. It was a real shift in understanding for me.

    I did read some Pain Science articles quite some time ago and I recall they concluded Sarno's ideas were good as far as they go. Interesting to see that the it's just psychological argument gets kicked into touch by a deeper and richer understanding of neurology. This has been game-changing for me. A massive impediment to my full recovery has been the nocebo that brain science and neuropsychology is wrong and that only 'pure' Sarno is right. That belief has hobbled my healing for years and words cannot express how grateful I am to finally quiet that voice.

    Dealing with central sensitization has been key for me. It's how I gained traction and went from demented to here (which is a variable 75-80% recovered). I now have the confidence and the tools to go the distance.

    Life is good.
    MindBodyPT and Lunarlass66 like this.
  5. hodini

    hodini Peer Supporter

    Nicole, thank you so much for posting the link to this article!

    It appears that some took the writer to be a scientist or doctor. Where he is really a former massage therapist and writer and editor.

    The article is excellently researched ( many interesting studies and anecdotes in the appendix) as well as being well written. In fact, I dare say it is the most comprehensive, easily understood article I have read on the subject to date and I have read a lot.

    What the author manages to do is to demonstrate the context in which many of the intertwined subjects relating to pain exist which is a formitable task in itself.

    He does so with a depth and breath of understanding that is a breath of fresh air in what has become an over simplified subject leading some to confusion and frustration.

    His sense of humor is also a well placed oasis in speaking of difficult situations. He does so with respect, humility and self examination. I can't be sure, but perhaps he never once mentioned the prefix "neuro" or if he'd did only sparingly where others who hop on the pain bandwagon love to inject it at every opportunity.
    Thanks again for providing the opportunity to read it. For those of you who have the patience for a long read and are willing to have your current status quo examined, I would highly reccomend it!
  6. Eugene

    Eugene Well known member

    What specific tools/concepts have you used to deal with central sensitization @plum ?
  7. Eugene

    Eugene Well known member

    Thank you for sharing that article. I read it with great interest yesterday evening. He has a nice writing style, and it raised some important concepts, although there's a big part of me that would prefer to think it is ALL relating to the mind, and that the physical side of things is just being generated by the mind. I still have much work to do.
  8. Jason32

    Jason32 Peer Supporter

    Paul Ingraham is probably the best writer regarding chronic pain that I've seen- I've posted his articles on here before. His most famous article is probably this one:
    https://www.painscience.com/articles/structuralism.php (Your Back Is Not Out of Alignment)

    I love this article too- as a statistician myself, it sums up what I always say about many treatment studies (but I'm not well-written enough to properly convey it like him!)
    https://www.painscience.com/articles/impress-me-test.php (The 'Impress Me' Test)
    Neil and plum like this.
  9. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    This is the single most effective, most powerfully healing and calming way for me. In 'my story' I place this within context but essentially I discovered it by chance and then learnt it was the primary tool employed by Dr. David Hanscom. (He is one of the practitioners that contribute to the forum.)

    Dr. Hanscom is a salvage spine surgeon which means he attempts to correct botched back operations. Before even considering surgery, he ensures his patients sleep well for a number of weeks. He has oftentimes found this considerably reduces their pain to the point where surgery is no longer needed. He also works with them on reducing stress and embracing other mind~body healing methods.

    Sleep soothes my neuralgia like nothing else. When it flares, which is usually due to stressful happenings, I rest easy knowing that sleep will save the day.

    *Yin Yoga
    I cannot endorse this form of yoga highly enough. It is also known as Serenity Yoga for its profound ability to bring peace to mind and body. I have practiced it for a good couple of years now and have resolved back problems and a particularly ratty case of achilles tendonitis with it too. But mostly it soothes and gently teases out deep-rooted tension in the body.

    Due to yin yoga I have a very grounded appreciation of somatic tracking and can clearly see why it is the cornerstone of recovery.

    *Swimming and Jacuzzi
    I'm not quite sure what I love most about the water; it's elemental affinity with our emotional self or the way it is supportive and forgiving of the pained body. Either way my healing galvanised once I started to swim regularly.

    Once I've swum a mile I head straight to the Jacuzzi. Sometimes I slink into the hot tub and sauna, it depends. I've found pleasure to be the shining glory of healing. Remember Sarno spoke of the soothe-to-rage ratio? Pleasure is the finest soother of all.

    And yes. Sexual pleasure counts *smiles*
    TrustIt likes this.
  10. hodini

    hodini Peer Supporter

    You are Plum right about the sleep!! As we fall into non-REM sleep (as opposed to REM where the brain gets regeneration) ones pituitary gland sends growth hormone to the muscle tissues in order to help them repair.
    It also has been proposed, because the brain is basically not very active during this period that there is more blood flow available to bring oxygen and nutrients to the muscles which also aids in their repair.

    That would jive with Sarno's theory that muscles can be effected by restricted oxygen flow. I have not seen anything that has verified in persons with TMS if this is actually the case and partial causality, but it would be an interesting and fairly simple one to explore further.

    I have wondered in this regard if there might be a higher percentage of persons with sleep apnea who report TMS symptoms? If one has insurance, a sleep test is non invasive and may provide some interesting insights.

    *Swimming and Jacuzzi
    I'm not quite sure what I love most about the water; it's elemental affinity with our emotional self or the way it is supportive and forgiving of the pained body. Either way my healing galvanised once I started to swim regularly.

    Whats not to love?? LOL, I have always been an avid swimmer, in fact, that is probably one of the most important process for me increasing my "self-efficacy" I swim between 8-12 miles a week, a good half of that is a strenuous endurance workout. Swimming is an ideal activity where you can set gradual goals and track improvements without the risk of much injury. I have taught many people to swim who have phobias about the water, or, have had experiences which were unpleasant in the water. I like to say that everyone is a swimmer, they might just be a dehydrated swimmer, just add water!!

    Once I've swum a mile I head straight to the Jacuzzi. Sometimes I slink into the hot tub and sauna, it depends. I've found pleasure to be the shining glory of healing. Remember Sarno spoke of the soothe-to-rage ratio? Pleasure is the finest soother of all.

    And yes. Sexual pleasure counts *smiles*"

    Soooooo agree!!!! :) :) :) !!!!
    plum likes this.
  11. Eugene

    Eugene Well known member

    Thanks for those pointers @plum . I am away in Spain for a couple of weeks and we have our own hottub and access to a beautiful shared pool. I think I will have to start making use of them.

    And I will check out the yin yoga as I know I am holding a LOT of tension in my pelvic region, I can feel it. Maybe the yin yoga would help release that physically as well as stop me being so uptight emotionally, which might just help me holding all that tension down there.

    And once I have all that sorted I can take a look at that final suggestion you made ;-)
  12. NicoleB34

    NicoleB34 Well known member

    i know i'm responding late, but i also have pelvic pain. So far, getting my life back, rather than avoiding triggers, has made some difference. I know it can seem scary to sit more, have more sex, ride a bike, etc. But i kind of forced myself to do it all in small amounts until i realised "my nerve is not damaged. things are tight and sensitive, that's all. I WONT get permanently worse". and i was a right. I'd get temporarily worse, i'd flare, but i flare less and less now. I still have a baseline pain that ranges from a 4-6, but the horrid flares have reduced. i just now need to work on that baseline pain.
    TrustIt likes this.

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