Since very early in the history of the human being emotions and affects (jealousy, ambition, passion, sorrow, laziness…) have been related with sickness in the body. Emotions are also very related to the capacity of resistance to infectious illness: it has been observed that soldiers from the defeated army were more sensitive to infections than the winner ones. Recent research shows that people who are stressed, anxious and depressed are more likely to sicken . The impact of mental health on chronic disease is now quite well known. What is more: Not being able to deal with guilt an anxiety can lead to physical disease. How? Lets see some psychic structures that impact our body:
- Cancer is preceded by depression
- Chronic diseases (specially autoimmune) such as: IBS, ulcer, multiple sclerosis and fibromyalgia are preceded by anxiety neurosis.
Psychoanalysis can help you be healthier because by treating depression and anxiety, you are less likely to develop these type of diseases.
Before the production of the unconscious, it was impossible to know anything about the unconscious reality, there was no scientific practice, it was ideological. Freud said that after very sterile times, medicine made big process: understood the cells, the chemical mechanisms, the functions… All these findings were related to the soma of the human beings. This is why doctors were attracted to focus on the soma and abandoned the study of the psyche to the philosophers.
After Psychoanalysis was born in 1900 with the Interpretaron of the Dreams, we can ask ourselves: what are the causes of that disorder which has affected the mood, impacting the soma?
For a long time we have heard about psychosomatic disorders. What is the psychosomatic phenomena? Psyche and soma are inseparables. What happen to psychosomatic patients is that to them, thinking is painful, so they elaborate everything via soma.
According to psychoanalysis, getting sick and maintaining that sickness implies some working. Disease is the outcome, the result of certain unconscious working.
The work required to maintain a psychosomatic structure is very costly: the patient suffers from the organic disease and all the suffering that implies into his daily life (physical pain, low mood, anger, financial issues, under mined relationships, not reaching their full potential, bad quality of life) . All this “working” is aimed to deny that he is a psychical subject, with psychical processes and pretend to reduce his body to a biological one. (As if they could separate their psyche from their soma.)
In psychoanalysis, the process of sicken is read from the end. A symptom, a disease is an effect of the unconscious (like dreams or slips). From the last outcome, the disease, we read the underlying psychic structure behind it.
Diagnosis in traditional medicine have big impact in patients: example, lets say that 80% of the gastric ulcers relapse the first year, however, the patient is told he has a chronic disease which happens in outbreaks. Medical diagnosis are a foretell of the future. In this sense, to tradicional medicine, future is preset, in psychoanalysis, it is to be built. A psychoanalyst is not going to come up with a diagnosis and hence a severe, mild or chronic prognosis according to the symptoms the patient talks about. To psychoanalysis, these symptoms are just hints (which led the doctor to diagnose certain disease), nothing more than manifest content (which needs to be interpreted, like dreams).
It has been observed that psycho – somatic patients, present a history of anxiety. Hence, if we can treat anxiety we should be able to prevent many cases of severe chronic disease.
Everything happens for a reason, we are all implied in all what we do. There is not such thing as bad luck. If that is true… there is so much we can do!