Why does a throat really hurt?

10. Dec 2020 | Articles

Post author: Martin Kruusvall

Martin Kruusvall

Why does your throat hurt? Every grandmother knows this answer! You got cold, your feet were wet, the season of the flu viruses arrived, woollen socks were not worn, etc. We hear this story since childhood from morning till night. Several generations have grown up with this story (read: hypnosis).

But how is it really? Why do some have a constantly sore throat or issues with their voice and others go without a scarf and an ushanka, but are as healthy as a horse? Why are winter swimmers healthy and do not have a sore throat? Why do some people in one team or family get sick right away and others never get sick? Hasn’t this made you question this story of mothers and grandmothers?

Ayurveda and psychosomatics

But what is it about then? Today we are looking for answers through keywords such as Ayurveda and psychosomatics. Ayurveda is a system of healing that existed thousands of years before traditional medicine, the main reference point of which is that the body and the mind are inextricably linked. Nothing can affect the body more powerfully than our mind. Psychosomatics is a modern field that describes the relationship between the psyche and the body.

Ayurveda says that 75% of all diseases have a psychological background, 15% depends on diet and 10% on the effects of the external environment. Thus, the above examples and grandmother’s diagnostics could fall into the category of about 10%. If, like DiCaprio, you float around in the cold water at night after falling out of the Titanic, no matter how well your psyche is, your throat can get sick.

How is a sore throat related to the psyche?

The point is that the throat area is under the influence of the throat chakra. In other words, anything that affects the throat at a non-physical level also affects the condition of the throat. The throat chakra’s sphere of influence includes, among other things, activities like communication. Unspoken emotions, as if squeezed in the throat, protect the person in this way from the unpleasant consequences of speaking. By subconsciously stopping emotions in the throat, a person strains their throat, there is overexertion and eventually pain.

So with a 75% probability, you could say that if you haven’t gotten massive amounts of cold, your immunity is normal, but you still have a sore throat or voice problems (unless you’ve just shouted at someone or hurt your voice singing at a song festival), then your sore throat is psychological! If these kinds of worries are even chronic, the chances are even higher!

What are the psychological causes of sore throats?

First, it must be understood that the human throat is precisely in the middle, between the heart and the head. It is like a waypoint that regulates the traffic between the heart and the mind.

The causes include, for example:

  • I would like to say something to someone, but I don’t dare
  • There is a lot of tension in life that I would like to shout out, but I don’t allow myself to do it
  • A situation has arisen that is difficult to “swallow”
  • Expressing yourself is hard; it is as if someone is holding your throat in their hands (although we usually keep our throats in our own hands)
  • Fear of being condemned or misunderstood

So what should we do?

The answer is straightforward and complex at the same time. Simple in the sense that it does not require money, always comes with it, is immediately available and ready to use: open your mouth and talk, express yourself to those to whom you have wanted to talk but you have not. Simple! There is no need to buy medicines or get vaccinated. No vaccine can help with mental problems, even more so with communication problems.

But all of it is complicated because, as it turns out, this self-expression is not that easy! Some would die before but would not open their mouths and tell anyone how they feel! That’s where the tension comes from!

Action plan:

  • I would like to say something to someone specific, but do not say:
  1. Buttonhole someone you haven’t told anything significant to and say what you have to say. You can first practise in your mind or in front of a mirror.
  2. If you are not brave enough to say it, write it. If you do not dare to send it, then just write, burn it, then throw the ashes off the balcony.
  3. Go to therapy, do more serious work and unravel all the causes and set goals for how to make it happen.
  • There is a lot of accumulated tension in life that I would like to shout out, but I cannot, or I don’t allow myself to do it:
  1. A. You can sit down, write down those tensions and think more seriously about your life, make changes in it and eliminate stressful situations.
  2. Find stress-relieving activities. They alleviate, but do not take away the cause, yet are still better than nothing: physical activities and sports such as boxing; shouting in the woods, or to a pillow, or in a car, or underwater in a pool. In any case, let the emotions out, don’t keep them inside.
  3. Go to therapy and do more serious work, unravel all the causes and set goals for how to make it happen nevertheless.
  • Something is happening in life, an event that is difficult to “swallow.”
  1. You can take the time to formulate what exactly it is that is difficult to accept. If this is really unacceptable, then think about how you would like to change it and then change it.
  2. If the situation cannot be changed, then there is no point in wasting energy fighting it and it is easier to release it instead.
  3. Go to therapy and do more serious work, unravel all the causes and set goals for how to make it happen nevertheless.

Suppressing emotions is harmful

As you begin to address the issues of self-expression, you will quickly discover that there are many obstacles. These obstacles must be removed. Some are related to you and the other person may not even be aware of the situation, but you keep suffering because all the fears are in you. Sometimes there are fears in you, but rightly so, because the other simply cannot take the truth, criticism or opinion of others and reacts inadequately.

Honestly, there aren’t many options. If you continue to build up tension and the condition of your throat gets worse and worse, for example, your tonsils get sick and you have to go for surgery. Another option is to start dealing with the problem.

In my practice, there has been a case where the best doctors in Estonia have said that there is nothing to do here and tonsil surgery is needed. By working through the causes and beginning to express and speak, the person was able to improve their situation in such a way that the hopeless case was completely healed. By the way, it may be that it is easy to communicate with everyone, but there is one person that causes all this tension.

The fact is, keeping emotions in is not the answer. It is the suppression of an emotional explosion in one’s own body. Imagine how much energy it takes.

Of course, you also have to think about the fact that if you start speaking your mind overnight, your loved ones may not understand what is happening to you now. People tend to unleash the ‘long-suppressed spring’ and move to the other extreme, where everything that has accumulated over the years is said harshly. This may not always be the best solution. In that regards, it is good to recall the words of the Indian holy man Sai Baba: “The truth must be told in a pleasant and lovable way”.

Daily prophylaxis:

  • Create a culture of openness in your family or at work, where it is possible to communicate openly.
  • Do not go to bed at home until the issues that have caused tension have been discussed.
  • If it is not possible to speak respectfully due to yourself, then let go of the greater tension elsewhere (e.g. talking to a friend, therapy, writing, etc.) and only then start a discussion with the other party.
  • Don’t be afraid of disagreements – they are normal.
  • Observe yourself, your body and especially your throat in conflict situations. In fact, you already know in advance who to watch yourself with. Observe even the most subtle feelings in your body at that moment.
  • If you don’t see direct connections to yourself, ask a loved one to give feedback on whether you’re more of a speaker or more of a retainer.
  • According to §45 of the Constitution of the Republic of Estonia, we have freedom of speech and we have the legal right to express our opinion.

Questions for self-analysis:

  1. When did my throat start to hurt?
  2. What happened in my life at that time?
  3. Are the situations where my throat hurts related to any problems or people?
  4. What part of me or what emotion do I find most difficult to express to others?
  5. What exactly can happen when I express myself?
  6. What do I really want to say and to whom?
  7. What am I holding back, e.g. my anger, sadness, irritation? With whom?

In conclusion, I would like to remind you that the body does not lie and the disease itself is not a problem. This condition is a reaction to an already existing internal conflict. If we cannot come into conflict or disagree with others, we will come into conflict with ourselves. We can endlessly drink hot tea, take medication and walk with a chiengora scarf to treat the symptoms, but the result is endless ‘lawnmowing’, instead of eliminating the ‘weed roots’. The responsibility for ourselves still lies with us and we can only change this situation ourselves!

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