Struggling with fibromyalgia? Learn about the Top 10 Symptoms and drug-free treatments to ease the symptoms. Often referred to as an “invisible illness,” fibromyalgia is a very common disorder that affects approximately 10 million people in the U.S. Though it affects people of all ages, fibromyalgia is more present in women than men. So, what is fibromyalgia? It’s characterized by widespread pain, which can be described as a constant, dull ache that has lasted for at least three months. Fibromyalgia causes this widespread pain because if affects the way your brain processes pain signals—which amplifies them.
Symptoms may include:
Widespread pain and muscle tenderness
Altered sleep, memory, and mood
While there may not be a specific cause for fibromyalgia, there are some contributing factors that may lead to a diagnosis of this disorder. A person may start noticing symptoms of fibromyalgia after a physical trauma, surgery, infection, significant stress, or the symptoms may just appear gradually over time. When diagnosing fibromyalgia, lab tests usually aren’t necessary and may only be used to rule out other conditions. Genetics may play a role in one’s diagnosis and many people who are diagnosed with fibromyalgia also may suffer the following:
Headaches or migraines
Irritable bowel syndrome
Anxiety or depression
Irritable or overactive bladder
Gastrointestinal reflux disease
Treatment for fibromyalgia may include a prescription for pain relievers and antidepressants, among other medications. Along with medication, most suffering from fibromyalgia are recommended to exercise. Stress and relaxation therapies may also help in reducing symptoms.
Though there may not be a cure, there are some ways those diagnosed with fibromyalgia can improve their quality of life. Some tips include:
Talking to family and friends about your condition and asking for help if you need it
Making lists to help remember things if you suffer from “fibro/brain fog”
Taking baths or sitting in a sauna (moist heat increases endorphins, which can reduce pain)
Getting a massage! They’re proven to reduce stress and anxiety
Joining a support group
For more information about fibromyalgia and how massage therapy may help symptoms, please visit Pragle Chiropractic and Massage Therapy at www.praglechiro.com or call 850-508-5951.
Posted by Natalie Burdick