Sunday, December 20, 2015

Adderral stopping Restless Leg Syndrome and acting as hypnotic

A single woman, in her late forties, who had too much unwanted sexual attention paid to her as a child because of her blond hair, very fair skin, delicate frame and attractive features, all of which give impression of vulnerability, and as a consequence of which she developed a hysterical fear of men, told me in her psychotherapy session that often in the night she develops Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) which keeps her awake, and only when she takes Adderall does she get relief from it and can fall asleep.
Now we know that hysteria is running away from the demands of genital sexuality. When the body and mind are not yet ready to meet the challenge of genital sex, if the child is  sexually irritated (sexually abused), or even if the over-stimulation is done without actual physical contact (seduction from a distance), she reacts with great fear to any future demands of genital sexuality and becomes anesthetic to genital sensations (sexual frigidity). In such women non-genital components of sexuality become hypertrophied. Most of the sexual bombshells like Marilyn Monroe owe their sexual appeal to this overly expressed pregenital sexuality over the genital. There is hysterical suppression of the latter.
This patient loves to come to my office with her yoga mattress, which she puts on the floor and starts  her yoga stretches, ostensibly to treat her body aches and pains (fibromyalgia due to childhood sexual overstimulation)  but which are thinly veiled hysterical seductive actions, in which non-genital aspects of her sexuality is displayed in the guise of yoga postures.
What is most noticeable about this behavior is how she jumps up with fright at any noise, or anything startling, while she is doing this yogic behavior, as if she fears getting caught doing something forbidden and naughty.
It is not surprising that this excessive fearful response, partly innate (inherited), partly due to sexual overstimulation in childhood, which was always accompanied by fear of getting caught and punished for it, persists during the night and emerges as Restless Leg Syndrome.
Restless Leg Syndrome appears to be running away from life's troubles (dangers) even when one is in bed and safe from actual harm. One cannot fall asleep because one is anxious and all aroused to run away from the anticipated harm. The thought processes are busy making up scenarios in which one is protecting oneself from impending harm. And in some this is the extent of their motor response to anxiety. However, in some the thoughts alone are not able to deal with the fear. In them the motor response spills into actual physical action of running away though an aborted one. They run but only through the restlessness of their legs.
How does Adderall, an amphetamine salt, a psychostimulant, reverses this fear response? Amphetamines release dopamine in the brain. A chemical that is released on receiving signals that happy things are happening, something good has fallen in your lot, or is about to fall in your lot, for there is a relaxation of your muscle tensions, and drop in the level of brain activity, because there is good and not danger around you.
Receiving this message that all is good where you are, and therefore there is no need to run away out of your bed,  the mind at last takes a sigh of relief, stops worrying, stops sending orders to the body to prepare for running, the racing thoughts and restless legs cease, and one falls asleep.

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