In medical terminology, fibromyalgia is actually categorized as a syndrome, rather than a disease. A syndrome is a collection of common symptoms or characteristics that, when combined, constitute a disorder. Premenstrual syndrome is also defined in this way is it refers to the combination of symptoms (irritability, tension, headaches, bloating, gas, depression, fatigue, breast tenderness, and weight gain,) that affect some women prior to menstruation. The most common symptoms of Fibromyalgia syndrome include muscle pain, aches, stiffness, difficulty sleeping, and fatigue. Here’s a closer look at each of these symptoms, and the treatment methods you can use to alleviate them.
The pain from Fibromyalgia is both widespread and localized. This condition usually results in a general achiness and stiffness throughout the body. In addition, sufferers may feel pain at one or all of the “tender points” on the body. These “tender points” are designated sites on the body where tendon connects to bone. They are found in the areas of the shoulders, neck, back, arms, and buttocks. Many people have described the pain of Fibromyalgia to a “stabbing” pain that occurs all over the body. It can also be likened to the soreness and tenderness of the flu.
Treatment: Treating the pain of Fibromyalgia is a complex and lifelong journey. Talk with your health care provider about the diet, exercise, medications, and supplements that may work best in alleviating your pain.
Symptom: Sleep Disorders
The pain, stiffness, and aches of Fibromyalgia often make it difficult for sufferers to fall asleep and stay asleep through the night. One recent study found that Fibromyalgia is associated with a period of restlessness that disrupts REM sleep and diminishes deep sleep. As many as seventy percent of Fibromyalgia sufferers also suffer from sleep disorders, leading to chronic fatigue and exhaustion.
Treatment: Be as consistent as possible about your nighttime routine. Try to go to sleep and wake at the same times each day and stay away from long daytime naps. Avoid any caffeine or stimulants that could affect your sleep. And talk with your health care provider about other treatment methods that may help your sleep disorders. We also recommend the product Fibro-Balance available at http://www.fibromyalgia-support.org
The fatigue that accompanies Fibromyalgia is pervasive and all encompassing. The sleep disorders that accompany the condition make it very difficult to obtain a restful night’s sleep. Many Fibromyalgia suffers have noted that they wake up in the morning more exhausted than when they went to bed. More than ninety percent of people who are diagnosed with Fibromyalgia are also suffering from chronic fatigue. This fatigue and exhaustion can also lead to other symptoms such as a decrease in sexual desires, and lack of interest in daily activities, and a general feeling of malaise.
Treatment: As with the treatment for sleep disorders, it’s important to be consistent with your nighttime routine, and limit daytime naps to one or two fifteen-minute naps. This may take a period of adjustment to get used to, but after a few days, it should help you sleep better at night and reduce your overall fatigue.
Symptom: Digestive Disorders
People who suffer from Fibromyalgia tend to reduce their activity levels in response to the pain. This in turn slows down the digestive system and could set the patient up for a roller coaster of constipation, diarrhea, and indigestion. One recent study found that thirty percent of Fibromyalgia sufferers also have trouble with digestive disorders.
Treatment: A healthy diet and exercise are the best medicine for digestive disorders. It can be difficult to keep moving and to eat healthy when the pain of Fibromyalgia sets in, but the benefits will far outweigh the pain in the long run.
o Tension or migraine headaches
Approximately fifty five percent of Fibromyalgia patients also report suffering from chronic tension or migraine headaches. These headaches can be a direct result of the pain and fatigue that also accompanies Fibromyalgia.
Treatment: Talk with you health care provider to determine the types of headaches you are experiencing and the best method for treating them. He or she may recommend dietary changes, medication, or nutritional supplements.
o Anxiety and depression
Anxiety, stress and depression go hand in hand with Fibromyalgia, but it can often be difficult to determine which illness is the cause and which is the result. Regardless, the pain, fatigue, sleep disorders, and general feelings of malaise that accompany fibromyalgia can often trigger feelings of anxiety, stress and depression. Many Fibromyalgia sufferers feel hopeless and helpless in their condition.
Treatment: Don’t try to go through this alone. Fibromyalgia can be a physically and emotional exhausting illness. Stay connected with family and friends that can help you work through the emotional burden of your condition. Also, locate a Fibromyalgia support group where you can meet other people that can empathize with your symptoms and offer guidance for your recovery.
Dr. Group recommends three products for Fibromyalgia relief; GHC’s, NOPAINE, the TERMINATOR II, and FIBRO-BALANCE, which are available through our Homepage or GHC Health.