Mind over matter. The placebo effect. What you believe is what is real.
However you like to phrase it, researchers just did a pretty tightly controlled test that proves the truth of the concept that our minds control what goes on in our bodies more than most of us are comfortable admitting. Read how acupuncture doesn’t have to be real to work.
But there is a science of pain relief that you can do yourself. It’s a physical release of little knots that form in your muscles–from stress, pain, injury, and so on. When I got myself a stubborn case of shoulder pain recently–brought on by a couple of months of working non-stop on a laptop computer, reaching and holding my arm up constantly to operate that mouse spot in the middle of the keyboard–most of the pain seemed to be in the front, where my arm is attached to the body.
After weeks of rubbing and stretching that did nothing to relieve the pain, I went to a massage therapist. She rubbed and pushed at that area, yet the pain continued as bad as ever. I went to a massage therapist specially trained in trigger point therapy who’s famous for relieving recalcitrant pain in dozens of people I know who couldn’t get relief otherwise. Experienced some relief immediately. But then I noticed that the slightest thing could kick the same pain back in. So at that therapist’s suggestion, I bought a book called “The Frozen Shoulder Workbook” and started studying the science of trigger point therapy for relieving pain.
Turns out the pain I was feeling was mostly likely referred pain, coming from a trigger point in one of my back shoulder muscles. I’ll be writing more about trigger points. This is too important to confine to a single post.