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riverotter
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 41
   Posted 3/11/2008 12:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Some of you may have read my posts before. Note, I am not a New-Agey person and am highly skeptical of any cure-all. I only do what works. For me, the following approach works....

I had bad GERD for many years and cured it with the Sarno TMS approach, which has gotten more and more attention lately in magazines and on radio and TV (Oprah, e.g.) The theory is that the GERD is caused by the mind trying to avoid repressed emotions (usually anger) and sending us symptoms as a distraction. Strange theory but it works for a lot of people. Once a patient accepts that those emotions are linked to the pain, the pain and symptoms disappear. I tried this for the GERD and I got better in a few weeks. I now talk to my body and tell it to stop sending me symptoms and I flaunt the symptoms by violating all the dietary rules (I drink alcohol, eat everything, etc.) I studiously avoid natural remedies, which are about fighting symptoms, not acknowledging my emotions.

I do get plenty of sleep and exercise and don't smoke. One of the key points in Sarno's theory is that there is nothing physically wrong with us, that our bodies are tough and can heal themselves. He is skeptical of MRI diagnoses and fancy tests, if those are not compared to "healthy" people with no symptoms. He asserts that our "abnormalities" may not be all that abnormal after all; it may be possible to have physical changes that are just natural aging issues and that do not need to cause pain or disease. (He also talks about fad diseases, brought on by advertising...this may explain the huge increase in GERD.)

Take home message: our bodies and minds are linked. Your pain and various symptoms may be a result of your mind punishing you or distracting you (due to repressed anger.) You may be able to avoid surgery and a lifetime of drugs and dietary rules if you explore this approach. This, I must stress, is not to minimize your pain/distress or to say that "it is all in your head." What you have is a serious disease that has serious physical aspects; however, the proper diagnosis and cure may not be to fight the symptoms, but instead to address the root cause.

OK, now back to my (pretty) normal, healthy life.

riverotter

marthamae
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 285
   Posted 3/11/2008 5:57 PM (GMT -6)   
I certainly agree that for me, at least, GERD has a huge basis in stress and emotion. I really hope a cure is as simple as telling my body something. I'd be all for it.

riverotter
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 41
   Posted 3/11/2008 9:05 PM (GMT -6)   
Try "The MindBody Prescription," available at most bookstores and public/university libraries, or other books by John Sarno and his growing list of "mindbody" colleagues. They contain a treatment plan.

Ask yourself, "what might my symptoms be trying to tell me?" "What might I be angry about (childhood, marriage, job)?" "Is it possible that those emotions could be blocked and that that energy is showing up as a physical pain?" Doing this can be uncomfortable, but it certainly doesn't cost anything and might start you on a different path. If you feel physical sensations when you do this emotional work, that could be a sign that you are moving in a useful direction.

I had to meditate / journal for about a week and each day my symptoms got a little better...then I started to reduce my meds and increase my "no-no" foods. In a few weeks, I was finally symptom free and was eating / drinking anything. I stopped all natural remedies and got rid of my pillow wedge.

I'm not new-agey, so this was all a stretch for me, but it worked and that is what mattered to me. I think in 50 years this will be the standard treatment for a lot of chronic ailments.

riverotter

Lucy007
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 62
   Posted 3/12/2008 1:40 PM (GMT -6)   
I hate to be negative, but I am always skeptical of a post that promotes a "book" or other kind of alternative cure.  I meditate, do yoga, exercise, and I AM new agey, but I still have gerd.  What would be your response to that?

riverotter
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 41
   Posted 3/12/2008 7:38 PM (GMT -6)   
Good question....

As I said, this "cure" has nothing to do with being new agey or not. I have done yoga for years and still do...but that is irrelevant to this approach.

Like you, I am skeptical, very skeptical of alt medicine. That is smart.

Sarno would say that he is not alt medicine, but instead treats patients with a clinically-successful regime that happens to involve no drugs or surgery.

To offer another perspective...remember that MDs used to think that milk would cure an ulcer. At that time, if you had suggested otherwise, you would have been ridiculed. MDs misunderstood the mechanism that caused that problem. Eventually the H pylori theory was developed and it finally became gospel. Today however, you are starting to see the first efforts to say that h pylori may not be the real issue and that it may be beneficial/protective. Oops, are the MDs wrong again?

Sarno contends that the effort to battle the symptoms of various pains (he has a long list of chronic ailments) may be misguided. He believes that the symptoms often are due to oxygen deprivation to muscles/tissue which creates pain and various symptoms. To stop the oxygen deprivation cycle, he has patients deal with buried emotions. In using this approach, he and a number of other MDs have started having very high cure rates for a variety of illnesses. Clinical trials are underway to try and better verify what has been happening. I wish it was something different, but that is what it is....I know, it sounds hokey and hard to believe...

But Sarno has been really successful. Sarno's success is why he was featured on the cover of Newsweek, has been lauded on Oprah (he cured her executive producer), has had a profile done on him by 20/20 and is mentioned alot on Howard Stern's radio program (he cured Stern, too.) Recently I heard an interview with him on NYC's major talk radio station; the other MD on the show was the head of some major division at Harvard Medical School and he was falling all over himself praising Sarno and his new approach. I can see why this is happening, because if you try his approach, it can be quite beneficial. Read the reviews of his books on any website and you will see dozens and dozens of testimonials. His books are all bestsellers for a reason. Lots of people give them as presents to friends....

So, that is my endorsement. If you are interested, go for it. If not, there is always drugs, surgery and the restricted diet thing. I decided to give this basically free and much-praised approach a try and as I have said, it worked for me. I feel great, use no drugs, am in better touch with my emotions and eat / drink anything.

Good luck to you all.

riverotter

marthamae
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 285
   Posted 3/12/2008 8:03 PM (GMT -6)   
I weigh all these things as a risk/benefit. For example, if this approach includes meditation and thinking a different way about your symptoms and perhaps buying a book and reading it.... well, that's not gonna hurt anyone in my opinion. So if you feel like trying it, why not? Granted, you may spend some money on the book, so you have to decide if its worth it to you.

When my doctor says..."Let's do surgery"...or "let's have another painful test done"...then I'm gonna really consider that. I'm gonna have to really think about that and be careful. But reading a book and meditating is no big deal. To each his own.

Lucy007
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 62
   Posted 3/12/2008 8:13 PM (GMT -6)   
I totally agree that a couple $$$ on a book is not really going to set me back as much as a life changing surgery.  So, I will go ahead and give it a try.  Looking forward to it actually!!
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