I will go out on a bit of a tangent here, but as someone that frequently encounters people suffering from Fibromyalgia, i believe it is necessary to shed some light on this terrible disease and what the people suffering from it actually deals with on a regular basis!
This article will help you understand and maybe be more interactive with this kind of chronic pain sufferers – and also to spread the words on what Fibromyalgia actually is and what some of the invisible symptoms of Fibromyalgia are.
>>> Scroll Down to get to the List! <<<
Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain illness which main symptom is widespread chronic pain and exhaustion/fatigued.
You can trace the existence of fibromyalgia back to the 1800’s, but it wasn’t until our modern age that the academic world has started to understand fibromyalgia and acknowledge it as an independent condition.
At a start, some believed that fibromyalgia was some kind of inflammation in the tendons and the disease was then classified as rheumatic. Research have then proved that fibromyalgia is in fact not a rheumatic disease, but a disturbance in the central nervous system – that it has been overloaded and hypersensitive, which results in it sending uncontrolled and amplified signals of pain to the brain.
Fibromyalgia is often triggered by pain, infection, trauma or any other kind of crisis.
Fibromyalgia starts with local pain in one area of the body, and a physical crisis is usually creating the unbalanced signals of pain over a long period of time while fibromyalgia caused by infection or trauma can arise very suddenly.
The disease is chronic, more often than not sustained throughout a lifetime – even if it sometimes can be alleviated at an older age.
Who is Affected?
According to international statistics, 2-4% of the adult population is suffering from fibromyalgia. According to some sources, even a high number as 10% is discovered.
The majority of the demographic is women (85-90%) but the increased amount of men getting diagnosed with fibromyalgia keeps rising.
The reason fibromyalgia has affected women to a much higher degree is that women have a much lower level of pain resistance and muscle strength than men. Women are also often more exposed to static chores and duties compared to men, which can be a cause of fibromyalgia. Some might even argue that there is genetics involved in the heredity of fibromyalgia.
During the last couple of years, the age for people diagnosed with fibromyalgia has gone down drastically. It’s not uncommon that people at an early age as 20-30 gets diagnosed with the condition.
Approximately 10% of the people diagnosed with fibromyalgia are kids and teenagers.
Keeping this in mind, it is very important to get a proper and correct diagnosis as early as possible whenever the illness is showing – as well as a good exposure to rehabilitation.
The Symptom of Fibromyalgia
The main symptom of fibromyalgia is chronic pain during any kind of rest, as well as an unreasonable feeling of exhaustion. Intense and chronic pain is a stress factor and stress-related symptoms such as headache and abdominal pain are therefore common.
The pain will eventually affect sleep which will undoubtfully lead to even more pain and more stress, causing a moment 22.
The tendon pain affect movement and makes it difficult to move the body unhindered. It’s not uncommon that some tasks are just impossible to go through with, such as running, walking up and down stairs, heavy lifting or even operating a car.
A lot of people, as the list down below illustrates, suffers from cramps and numbness – and a tingling feeling is affecting more than 50% of the people diagnosed, even without them having any nerve damages.
Discover more invisible symptoms of fibromyalgia by scrolling down.
The Diagnosis of Fibromyalgia
The diagnosis of fibromyalgia is what’s called a diagnosis of criteria, meaning that a certain amount of criteria of the disease have to be met in order to clearly determine the diagnosis.
The current criteria for the diagnosis were appointed by the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) 1990. The diagnosis of fibromyalgia is acknowledged in the whole world.
The reason for using criteria when diagnosing fibromyalgia is that it’s impossible to determine the diagnose through medical examination. The lack of these medical proofs is often the cause of questioning of the existence of fibromyalgia, which is very unfortunate.
There are, however, some testing during research that is giving hope to, in the future, being able to determine the illness through an objectified examination.
The Main Criteria for the Determination of Fibromyalgia
At least three months of general pain in all of the four quadrants, right left upper and lower parts of the body – including acial pain, which is referring to the spine, upper chest and/or the lower back.
Mild to severe pain experienced in at least 11 of the 18 tender points.
The Cause and the Cure
The latest research has shown that scientists are relatively unified in believing that fibromyalgia is caused by an unusual processing of the signals of pain. This is the direct result of a disturbance in the central nervous system.
The pain is herefore not connected to where on the body the pain is experienced.
Why this disturbance of the central nervous system and in the hormone system occurs is yet unknown. There is, however, continual research going on in regards to what is causing fibromyalgia and might hopefully result in any understanding of the cause for the disease.
Because it is not determined what the cause of fibromyalgia actually is, there is no current cure for it either. The main focus at the moment is to alliveate as much of the symptoms as possible, mainly through meditation, physical therapy and different kinds of relaxation exercises. As a result of the different shapes and forms the chronic pain manifests, the treatment may vary from person to person.