“It’s all in your head” may invoke memories of lying face up on a playing field as a child with a coach or a parent downplaying an injury. Unfortunately (or fortunately), that saying is reasonably accurate—the pain of all types and experiences come from the brain. Yes, injuries to bones and soft tissues happen, and wounds or other types of acute injuries occur. In traditional western medicine, we use bandages, rest, and medications to support the healing process.
The traditional western medical approach still doesn’t address the core issue of the pain the brain interprets. The soft tissue and bones can heal, but many people experience pain for longer than the typical 8-12 weeks. Some don’t even have a precise diagnosis, and yet pain remains as if there were a visible injury. Currently, the most oft used method of managing chronic pain by traditional medicine is the use of medication or surgery. While there are some unique cases where these are the best solutions, even then, the brain is being overlooked.
When you smash your toe on a sharp corner, there is often minimal damage done to the toe but incredible pain output by the brain. There does not have to be an ‘equal’ amount of pain to physical damage. And not all pain is due to injury from your body striking another object. Have you ever had your stomach hurt when you were genuinely nervous? Some people have a specific muscle in their back that burns when they are worried or overwhelmed. People report being able to feel when a storm is coming by the pain they feel in their joints or at an old injury site. Emotions and experiences affect the brain and can be manifested physically in our bodies.
At Root and Restore, healing the ‘root’ of the problem is our mission. Understanding why the brain is sending specific signals to the body can be used to repair the patterns of how the pain initially came about. ‘It’s all in your head’ becomes a source of power and confidence rather than a way to brush things off. When a person can understand their body and mind, they are primed to begin working towards lasting and continual healing.