Fibromyalgia is a state that’s been becoming more prevalent and getting more attention over the past few years. Fibromyalgia causes pain and achiness through the entire body, generalized fatigue, and several other associated symptoms. Up to 3-5% of the population suffers from fibromyalgia, and it’s more common in girls. Although it’s not life threatening, its symptoms may affect how you live your life.
What causes fibromyalgia to grow? No obvious cause of this condition has been decided, but there are numerous theories. One common theory is that an abnormality of heavy sleep causes a drop in the production of certain hormones.
People with this condition generally don’t have a problem falling asleep, but their deep sleep is interrupted with bursts of awake-like brain activity. The absence of deep sleep leads to less hormone production. This causes fibromyalgia patients to be more prone to pain.
How can you know if you have fibromyalgia? Generally, you feel as though you’ve got the flu all the time. You’re very achy and tender throughout your body, and you’re very fatigued. You will feel like your mind is fogged, and you have problems concentrating through the day. Usually, there’s a traumatic or emotionally stressful event that initially brings on the symptoms.
Additionally, there are many other secondary symptoms which are associated with this condition. These signs include irritable bowel syndrome, restless legs syndrome, chronic headaches, irritable bladder syndrome, TMJ syndrome, dry eyes and mouth, depression, and nervousness. All symptoms of fibromyalgia can be exacerbated with anxiety, over-exertion, premenstrual syndrome, menopause, and weather fluctuations.
Fibromyalgia can be correctly diagnosed by your chiropractic doctor. Your health care provider will assess 18 tender points on the body. There has to be pain in 11 of 18 tender points, pain above and below the waist, pain on the left and right side of the body, and the pain must be present for at least 3 months. The existence of these tender points, together with your health history and symptoms, will ascertain if you have fibromyalgia or not.
So what can you do to deal with and deal with fibromyalgia? The main thing is to obtain an accurate diagnosis from the chiropractic doctor. While body aches and fatigue are the defining characteristics of fibromyalgia, they can also be symptoms of other more serious problems. Once diagnosed, your physician may also help you cope with your fibromyalgia.
By using gentle chiropractic adjustment, gentle stretching, and physical treatments, your physician can help lower the sensitivity of your muscles. This treatment often results in less aches and pains. Your physician may also make nutritional recommendations to make sure your body has enough minerals and vitamins to repair itself and maintain healthy tissues.
Additionally, there are two major things you can do to help yourself deal with this condition. The first step is integrating light aerobic exercise in your life. Exercise contributes to more hormone production which may help compensate for some of the hormone production lost during abnormal sleep.
Start with only 5 minutes per day of walking, yoga, or low impact aerobics (like Curves), and gradually increase your endurance up to 20-30 minutes each day. Another important step is learning how to listen to your body. If you start to become tired or achy, stop what you’re doing, and have a rest. You may find you will need to break up housework into little half-hour intervals.
Asking for help from your family, and learning how to take on just what you can comfortably handle are also significant actions to managing fibromyalgia symptoms.