How important is accepting the mind-body connection in order to recover?

Photo of clouds shows the importance of continuing a mind-body approach to dissipating pain despite normal flare-ups.

Dr. David Clarke recognizes there is debate about whether people need to fully embrace the idea they have a mind-body condition or a stress-related illness in order to make any progress.

Dr. Clarke believes it is not necessary to draw a firm conclusion about that. It is okay to wonder if you have got a possibility of an organ disease or a structural abnormality.

If you are worried about that, continue to work with your medical clinicians to exclude those possibilities whenever they come up.

But at the same time, the more tests you have done, the less likely it is that there is an organ disease and a structural abnormality. That makes a stress connection more likely.

Dr. Clarke recommends you work on any psychological issues to try and uncover the underlying stresses. Try to reduce the stresses you uncover and see if you get better.

If you find that your symptoms are making progress, that will increase your confidence that the stress connection pathway is the one to pursue.

Flare-ups in symptoms

Dr. Clarke says flare-ups while you are recovering from this illness are perfectly normal.

There may be ups and downs in your symptoms and for your symptoms to move to different places in your body or mutate into something else like insomnia, for example.

If you have concerns when that happens, by all means go back to your medical clinician and get it evaluated.

But in the meantime, continue working on the stress and working on the issues you have uncovered to keep moving forward.

Two steps forward, one step back is a very common pathway for people who are recovering.