The physiology of TMS begins in the brain. Here repressed emotions like anxiety and anger set in motion a process in which the autonomic nervous system causes a reduction in blood flow to certain muscles, nerves, tendons and ligaments, resulting in pain. Your pain is real! It's just not the result of a structural abnormality. The autonomic nervous system responds this way to deflect the person's attention away from very unpleasant, often painful emotions that the mind is trying to keep repressed. It is as though the mind had decided that a physical pain is preferable to an emotional one. Crazy right? I suppose if I wasn't an acupuncturist I might think it's a little more wacky, but as an acupuncturist I see stress and emotions reek havoc on the human body. I always say that if I treat all of my patients merely for stress alone, everyone will get better.
The cure for TMS can be as simple as hearing a lecture, watching a video or reading a book on the subject. Knowledge is the cure. Once awareness is brought to the fact that the pain is a distraction from the repressed emotions, your body can't be fooled any more, and the pain disappears. Tension Myositis Syndrome, or TMS, affects millions of people and they don't even know it. I'm sure it's affecting some of you reading this right now! Dr. Sarno is approaching ninety and it seems few other doctors are poised to continue his groundbreaking work. I for one, will not let this die. I could write a whole newsletter on TMS! You will surely be hearing more about it from me. In the meantime watch this 20/20 video on TMS, read Dr. Sarno's book "Healing Back Pain" and/or come into the office to discuss this and your own personal pain case more in depth with me.