According to Dr. Susan Babel, a psychologist that specializes in trauma-induced depression, our emotions have a huge impact on chronic pain, as “studies have shown that chronic pain might not only be caused by physical injury but also by stress and emotional issues.”
“Physical pain functions to warn a person that there is still emotional work to be done.”
Reiki practitioner and kinesiology expert Lori D’Ascenzo gives an explanation of the way emotions can manifest in physical forms in the body:
“As the electrical current of an emotion travels along your neural pathways, it triggers the release of chemical proteins called neuro-peptides (NPs). Each emotion has a different frequency. In response to these individual frequencies, your body releases corresponding NPs. These tiny chemical proteins communicate chemical messages throughout your body, creating a physiological response.”
Alan Fogel, Ph.D., is a Professor of Psychology at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, clarifies the connection between the physical and emotional pain:
“When people feel emotional pain, the same areas of the brain get activated as when people feel physical pain: the anterior insula and the anterior cingulate cortex. Pain, of course, is always both a physical and an emotional experience. If the similarity is not just in the brain but in the body, it’s perfectly reasonable to ask: Where does an emotional pain hurt?..Emotional pain may be located in the body in those places where an expression was meant to happen but failed to materialize.”
Therefore, read on to find out more about the emotional turmoil you are struggling with, according to the area where you feel the pain:
Foot pain is often a result of depression, which is not easy to treat. Yet, there are perfectly effective natural ways to fight back and find your joy, like regular exercise, music, walks in nature, and adopting a pet.
If your ankles hurt, it means that you should enjoy life more, pamper yourself, and find more pleasure in every single day.
Stress, jealousy, and tension are the main emotional culprits for the pain in the calves.
People who overestimate themselves often develop knee pain. Remember that we are all imperfect and mortal.
Many people experience hip pain when they are afraid to move on or make a necessary change in life.
You might face some financial issues if you suffer from lower back pain. You should ask of a raise, or find a better strategy to manage your money.
Upper back pain can indicate a lack of emotional support, appreciation, or affection.
Pain in the hands is associated with the lack of close friends. Therefore, spend more time with people, meet new friends, and go out with colleagues.
If you suffer from pain in the arms or elbows, it might be a sign that you should accept the natural changes that occur in life, and just go with the flow.
The pain in the shoulders means that you are carrying a heavy burden that you must solve. It might be helpful if you share your problem with a trusted person.
Neck pain indicates that you need to forgive, either someone else or yourself. Focus on the love you feel, which should be stronger than the mistakes done.
As stated by Dr. Christina Peterson, a board-certified physician, “Stress comes in many varieties, including time stress, emotional stress, and the stress of physical fatigue…and (these) emotions pack a wallop for the migraine sufferer.”
Daily stress leads to chronic headaches and migraines, so relieving the tension and stress in life will eventually relieve these symptoms.
To conclude, in the words of Dr.Fogel:
“For emotional pain, an analgesic will help us temporarily, but it won’t take away the unresolved feelings that never got seen or expressed or really felt. In order to get over grief, resolve anger, and even embrace happiness, we have to really feel those things in the body. We are quick to access the body locations of pleasurable feelings (food, drink, sex, warmth, touch) so why not also let ourselves go to the places of emotional pain? Yes, it hurts for a while, but then – miraculously — there can be a relief and the emergence of a new perspective on ourselves and others.”