Nurse who suffers chronic tailbone pain

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I am a Registered Nurse who has suffered with tailbone pain for over 8 years. Like all chronic pain, it is essential that sufferers get the correct support, diagnosis and treatment appropriate for them as an individual. This blog follows my journey with chronic pain, it expresses my personal opinions and thoughts. It is not intended as a replacement for advice or treatment from your normal Healthcare Provider.

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Oh, and another thing....

I saw my 'holistic physio' again today. He agrees that gluten does not seem to be a problem for me, so I can go back to eating as I was- hooray!

So, where does that lead me to now? Well....another thing he originally told me three weeks ago at my first visit, or I should say that he 'diagnosed' me with, was 'chronic hyperventilation syndrome'. I did not mention this before as it just seems I am getting told one thing after another! I was not looking for more problems to solve, or more labels or syndromes to be diagnosed with...HONEST! I did not mention it before, as I can only deal with one thing at a time and would not wish people to think I am some kind of hypochondriac. I have never worried that anything serious is going on regarding my pain. I know I have this hypermobile coccyx and degenerating spine L5/S1. All I have ever sought is to be painfree.

According to my physio I breathe too fast, and incorrectly. I have always breathed fast, shallow breaths- largely due to having sinus problems, and perhaps anxieties- past and present, which I am not good at handling. My hyperventilation is a chronic condition now, I cannot remember a time before I breathed like this.

A breathing pattern disorder like hyperventilation will cause low levels of carbon dioxide.

The New Medicine Group states that health is influenced by breathing pattern disorders, due to  'depleted Ca and Mg ions, enhancing sensitisation, encouraging spasm and reducing pain thresholds', and 'reducing oxygen release to cells, tissues, brain (Bohr effect)...encouraging brain fog, fatigue and pain'. It may also cause 'the evolution of myofascial trigger points'.

The link between mood and digestion

If we are struggling with stress and anxiety, both our mind and our body are arguably in meltdown, trying to do their job as best they can. It may result in our digestive system not working as it should. With someone who has 'leaky gut' syndrome (see previous posts and page) this is just another problem added to the mix.

If we are anxious, then we often tense up, our posture is not a normal relaxed one. Sitting in tense positions will undoubtedly further aggravate any muscle or joint pain you have.

The physio tells me that the gut and the mind have strong connections, both being affected by the same neurotransmitters and hormones. Our gut apparently has the same amount of neurons as our spinal cord. Both our gut and our mind are affected by changes brought about by stress. Adrenaline is one such hormone. It will affect your overall digestion. Remember that 'butterflies in your stomach' feeling...well, that's adrenalin at work.

So breathing pattern disorders, leaky gut and anxiety can all affect our bodies significantly, and affect how our body responds to pain, or even create it's own pain. I now have to do breathing exercises- five minutes of very slow, deep abdominal breathing twice a day until I next see him. I guess this is also a kind of relaxation exercise in itself!

He is not pursuing probiotics or enzymes with me at present. One thing at a time. I assume if there is such a close link between our gut and our mind, then improving my breathing, should show subsequent improvement in essential nutrients being delivered correctly throughout my body. This should in theory help reduce my pain. In theory! As mentioned before the mind plays such an integral part in the production and management of pain. I had not realised that the gut does too.

Oh how complex and beautifully intricate the human body is.


  1. It is that our human body is complex. Gut conditions and microorganisms in it play an important role in our overall health. Recent studies showed that several microbes in gut are connected with some diseases.

  2. Thankyou for your comment- the human body really is an amazing and intricate thing.