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“Our brains do not react to reality, but to the interpretation of reality”

Reality is different for everyone and quite a lot of factors influence the interpretation of this reality. Fear is one of the many factors that influence this and from scientific research and experience you can say that there is often a strong relationship between fear and the presentation of pain.

Like on thepage sensitizationexplained, the presence of pain   always involves “physical jammers x sensitivity of the nervous system”. Anxiety mainly affects the sensitivity of the nervous system and if this plays a major role in someone's complaints, it is highly advisable to treat in a specific way and to focus this treatment on calming the nervous system.

The following example may clarify the extent to which fear can play a role in complaints that present themselves in the body. One hundred people who are eligible for a specific lower back surgical technique were interviewed. The researchers were particularly interested in the presence of childhood psychological trauma (abuse, maltreatment, parental loss, emotional neglect, and alcoholism and drug use by one or both parents). After conducting the interview, a participant (patient) was assigned to one of the following groups:

  • No traumatic experience

  • One or two traumatic experiences

  • Three or more traumatic experiences

The result of the operation was then measured (decrease in pain post-operatively) and the results were compared. The group that reported no traumatic experience recovered well in 95% of the cases, in the second group this was 73% and in the group that reported three or more psychological traumas the recovery was only 15%.

From the 1990s to the present, researchers have conducted extensive research into the influence of factors such as fear, emotions and other psychological stressors on the development of physical problems (eg pain). Happiness at work, job satisfaction, sense of fulfillment and sense of purpose are also popular research topics and play an important role in physical pain, because it makes a person more or less sensitive (influence on the amplifier).

Fear and alertness in the nervous system ensure that all "gates" are further open. Or as in the figure on the page where sensitization is discussed, all volume buttons are turned up with the result that more information can be sent to your brain. There is a chance that the pain-anxiety-alert circle is maintained in this way. This circle is very strong, even with the reduction of pain, anxiety can remain present and a person can remain alert to the possible return of pain complaints.


Restoring this circle requires a completely different approach. Confidence in the body, calmness in the nervous system, body awareness (body feeling), breathing training and working towards a feeling of safety with regard to the body are important components to get out of the pain-alert circle.

Fasciatherapie F.I.T.

Practical tips and links:

  • Your body can go into recovery mode the moment it receives the message 'the coast is clear'. The moment you experience any form of threat, it will be given priority. Switch to onecalm, regular slow breathingis a strong message that there is no imminent danger.

  • If you are unsure about where the pain is coming from, make an appointment with a fascia therapist. She/he will do an extensive  examination and probably be able to tell you the source of your pain. Remember that a lot of chronic pain is innocent in nature and comes from the soft tissues (especially the fluids) and is treatable.Find a therapist.


  • J. Schofferman et al, 1992, Childhood Psychological Trauma Correlates with Unsuccessful Lumbar Spine Surgery

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