Tense back muscles were a big problem for me during the decades I suffered from acute and chronic back pain. They continue to plague me in my neck, shoulders, mid back, low back and throughout my legs to this day.
My pain started out as cycles of acute flare-ups followed by periods of fear and nervous anticipation of the next dreaded attack. As I got older, my pain became steady and chronic.
Basically, for 18 years, my back always ached to some extent and hurt severely some of the time. I found relief for a few years, but now suffer again, possibly worse than before in some ways and not as bad in others.
describes a tight and uncomfortable feeling, as if the fibers are so
taut that they might snap. This feeling can exist almost anywhere in
the dorsal anatomy and can make life very unpleasant for anyone who must
cope with pain on a daily basis. This I can tell you from firsthand
I noticed a long time ago that I was susceptible to back muscle tension whether or not my back was hurting at that given time. It seemed like no matter how hard I tried to relax, my muscles just would never truly become loose. Even when I slept, I would wake up in the middle of the night and feel tension in my neck and lower back muscles.
I never really thought too much about it, nor did the numerous doctors and therapists whom I consulted about my pain and muscular tension. As my condition got worse and worse, I began to educate myself about all the possible sources of back pain in general and specifically, my own torturous spinal issues.
Lots of what I learned did not make much sense to me given what I had been told about my diagnoses. I continued to research alternative explanations for pain and eventually studied mindbody medicine in great depth.
The more I learned about my diagnoses of herniated discs and degenerative disc disease, the less my symptoms made any clinical sense. I had pain when and where none was indicated by my condition and did not have pain when symptoms would be appropriate. My doctors had no answer to my puzzling questions and wrote me off as someone who was...
"Trying too hard and thinking too much".
Thinking too much? Of course I was thinking... someone had to and it was obvious to me that these doctors did not care about why my pain would not go away despite a range of treatments lasting 18 full years of my suffering.
I began to uncover suspicions that my pain had been misdiagnosed all along. I learned more about the virtually universal nature of psychosomatic pain syndromes and more specifically, psychological back pain. I never thought in a million years that my very physical back pain could be the result of anything except a spinal abnormality.
I was conditioned by the medical system to accept their diagnoses blindly and go along with the treatment plan, regardless of the skewed logic or dismal results. Well, now I was on to something and I was done being a victim… to the pain or to the opportunists in the healthcare system.
I learned that some patients with unresolved back pain and muscular tension might really be suffering from a mindbody condition. The symptoms are completely real and physical, but the causation is psychoemotional.
The tenseness in my muscles had been there all along due to repressed and unresolved emotional conflicts, fears and memories from my formative years. I was shocked and amazed that these “ancient” issues could hold any power over me so much later in life.
However, using knowledge therapy I soon became sure that my pain had indeed been the result of these emotional processes all along. I overcame my chronic muscle tension and all the other associated symptoms which had plagued me for so long. I became stronger and healthier than ever before.
The relief lasted a few years and was wonderful. Heaven, in a word. However, the effects of age and injury allowed the pain to return, once again dooming me to chronic pain. I am still working on finding a permanent answer to this problem and will continue to try and find a solution for all of us!