I have promised many of my clever and curious patients to tell them
about “the gate theory”, because this area in particular is so important in my view in connection to pain control without the need for using pain killers, and the kind of gentle control of pains and the amount of relaxation and pleasures this source of pain control will give you.
Before I talk about the “gate theory” I would probably start with the nervous system as a whole in a very quick way to give you that background I wanted all of you to store it in the back of your thinking and appreciating.
The nervous system in a very simple way is formed of:
1- Central system: Brain & Spinal cord. The basic structure of the central nervous system is: Cell & Fabre. The cell is named “neuron” and the fibre starts with an “axon” away from the neuron.
2- Peripheral system: Nerve fibre & Neuro-juction link.
Nerve fibres are of three types: A, B, and C fibres.
A fibres are the biggest, longest, and the fastest in transmission. All “A” fibres are myelinated.
Then comes the “B” fibres; which are smaller than “A” fibres, and slower in their transmission. Some “B” fibres are myelinated, and some others are not myelinated.
The third type of nerve fibres are the “C” fibres, which are the target of today’s subject. “C” fibres are small, short and very slow in transmission. They are all non-myelinated.
3- Autonomic Nervous System: Sympathetic & Para-sympathetic. This system in itaelf is very much
amazing. We need to learn about the relationship between the two systems (sympathetic & para-sympathetic), and how much those two “hidden” systems influence a lot of our lives. Stress, anger, anxieties, worries, lack of concentration, and some forms of confusion.. are all related to these two sophisticated systems.
I just wanted to say at this stage of talking that; every thing we do, every move we make, every moment we think or guess is electrical. In order o do anything at all; we need to create electricity. We can never do anything in our lives without producing electricity.
To produce electricity, you need a generator. To use the electricity you produced, you need to transfer it from the site of production to the site of utilisation. For any electricity to be useful we need to transfer it into action. Just please remember the classical electricity we are using in our houses: A generator somewhere, a wiring system starting at the generator and ending up in your house. An electrical wire will end up at the bulb which is hanged in the roof of your lounge. You need a switch to turn the light on, and there you are… sitting in a bright lounge with other members of your family.
In your head there are around 100 billion generators called “neuronal cells”, and each one of them is able to produce electricity. Each neuronal cell is connected to an electrical wire called “axon”, and that axon is “myelinated”.
The myelin sheath is simply a sleeve covering the nerve, and it has three jobs: protection, nutrition, and transmission. A myelinated fibre is much and much faster in electrical transmission than the non-myelinated fibre. A transmission in the myelin sheath is at least 10-20 times faster than the transmission through the en-sheathed fibre. It is a very long and sophisticated story, but I have tried my best to make very simple and so brief to save your time.
In the next part of this article, I will talk about “C” fibres and
explain the “gate theory”.