The headline news today is that scientists have proven that positive thinking can help beat the pain of Osteoarthritis. The research that took place at the University of Manchester was funded by Arthritis Research UK.
This is another case of age-old knowledge being claimed by science as revolutionary scientific thought. It really isn’t.
Basic Osteopathic philosophy states that the body is a unit. Our mind, body and spirit are individual domains that are interlinked to create a whole. These domains interact with and influence each other.
By this principle, if you are emotionally stressed you can experience physical symptoms such as tight muscles in your shoulders, headaches, nausea, indigestion. The body can lead onto emotional stress also, for example when concerned over physical symptoms you can get emotional symptoms like anxiety. This is a good illustration of how the mental and physical states are interlinked and influence each other.
Placebo effect is another good illustration. This is when a sham treatment is administered whilst the patient believes they are being given a treatment to target their ailment. In the early 1800’s placebo was commonly used as a treatment in itself. The only way placebo could work is if the mind, spirit and belief systems can affect the physical domain.
I very often say to my patients to keep a positive mental attitude as I have noticed that it can speed up the healing process.
This basic piece of medical common sense is front page news today. The newspaper article further patronizes its readers by showing a picture of a hand with labels of the index finger, middle finger and ring finger.
Scientists, please do give attention to basic medical philosophy but please give credit to where credit is due!
And on a positive note, I truly hope this research helps a lot of arthritis sufferers out there.