Can RA be caused by a mindbody process? Psychosomatic rheumatoid arthritis is one theory used to explain why this inflammatory joint disease chooses to affect some people, but not others.
There are virtually no known anatomical reasons why rheumatoid conditions begin, why they progress and why they sometimes resolve, even without treatment. Many scientists and doctors have linked RA to the mindbody process, which helps to clarify the possible true nature of many autoimmune disorders, including rheumatoid arthritis and other closely related conditions, like ankylosing spondylitis, lupus and gout.
Although this theory is off-putting to some patients who have been diagnosed with the condition, it is crucial to understand that psychosomatic does not mean that the disease is fake or that it does not hold terrible power over the victim. Instead, speculating that RA is a product of a mindbody causation simply means that the underlying mechanism driving the bodily changes comes from the psychoemotional self, rather than from an anatomical mechanism.
This innovative exploration into the realm of the subconscious mind details one theory that is currently being debated concerning the actual nature of many autoimmune processes, including RA.
Being that rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, it is clear that the condition is enacted from within. There may be no infectious process, environmental contaminant or structural causation involved in enacting rheumatoid arthritis. What actually occurs during RA is that part of the immune system sees the body’s own tissues as enemy invaders and seeks to destroy them as efficiently as possible. Of course, these tissues are not marauders, but instead are the protective measures within many of the body’s joints.
Since this seemingly pathological process seems illogical to be caused by any other reason, except by a psychosomatic causation, the theory of psychogenic RA has come to gather widespread recognition among experts in the field. Exactly why the body creates these terrifying symptoms is unknown, but many experts feel that these expressions act as distractive mechanisms to keep the mind from considering far more frightening psychological issues that reside within. In essence, the RA symptoms act as a camouflage from repressed or suppressed emotions.
This theory mirrors those propagated by the famous Dr. John E. Sarno in his work concerning tension myoneural syndrome at the NYC Medical Center in Manhattan.
It is impossible to cure any psychogenic disorder by using purely physical modalities. Being that the underlying symptomatic imperative is psychoemotional in nature; the treatment must also act on the mind, rather than the body. Medication, physical therapy and surgery may address the physical signs and symptoms, but will do absolutely nothing to cure the causative source. There is currently no known universal cure for RA, yet many patients have achieved full remission using a variety of diversified mindbody therapies and some have also recovered using traditional medical care practices.
Unlike many conditions which are actively and successfully treated using knowledge therapy, RA demonstrates evidence of its presence to the outside world, making most patients believe that a psychogenic cause is unlikely, if not impossible. However, it is crucial to remember that in any psychogenic condition, the pain actually exists in the physical body and only the underlying reason for the pain resides in the mind. Symptoms are never imagined or exaggerated; they are simply driven and enacted by mindbody interactions.
As with many other controversial health conditions, such as fibromyalgia, some patients are hesitant to consider the mere possibility that RA might be a psychogenic health crisis. This reluctance is usually due to a misunderstanding of the term psychosomatic and how it applies to their debilitating pain.
Upon learning more about the ubiquitousness of mindbody health issues, many patients come around to contemplate the distinct possibility of a logical mindbody link to their RA.
RA is one of the least common health conditions treated with psychological therapies. However, research has shown tremendous promise using these types of treatments, especially when compared to the generally disappointing and dangerous medications that are so common in the traditional medical sector.
Rheumatologists have worked to end various inflammatory musculoskeletal disorders for decades, but have not even been able to provide most RA patients with adequate symptomatic relief; forget about a true cure. Therefore, it is time to think outside the box and apply what is known about autoimmune disorders to RA treatment, with a different goal in mind: Instead of dealing with the expression of the underlying causative mechanism, it is critical to directly address that mechanism itself, in order to stop the pain now and forever.
For more information on mindbody medicine, consult with a specialist in the field or take the time to research the specialty yourself. We have dozens of essays on this very website that are dedicated to helping patients learn more about the mindbody interactions.