Dealing with fibromyalgia in Ottawa?
Fibromyalgia, also known as fibromyositis and fibrositis, is a common chronic disease, characterized by widespread, constant pain throughout the body, sleeping disturbances, and abnormal exhaustion. The majority of people with fibromyalgia are women, in whom the initial symptoms appear between the ages of 20 and 50. However, fibromyalgia can also affect men, teenagers and children.
What causes fibromyalgia?
In some people, fibromyalgia develops with no apparent cause. In others, the disease appears after a traumatic experience such as an accident, an emotional trauma, overworking, hormonal changes, sexual or physical abuse during childhood, or a viral disease. The real cause of fibromyalgia is still unknown. Research is being done to identify the probable cause(s) of this syndrome.
What are the symptoms of fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia is characterized by a variety of symptoms that vary from one person to the next and may change on an hourly or daily basis.
The following is a list of the primary symptoms:
- - non-restoring sleep (feeling of fatigue on awaking and morning stiffness that may persist during the day);
- - gastrointestinal problems (stomach or intestinal spasms, constipation, diarrhea, etc.);
- - headaches and migraines;
- - increased symptoms during times of stress;
- - increased pain due to changes in temperature (humidity, cold and air-conditioning);
- - feeling of swelling, numbness;
- - pain increased by too little or too much physical activity;
- - tendency to feel depressed, anxious and sad;
- - lack of concentration and memory loss; and
- - fatigue and muscle weakness.
Is it true that fibromyalgia “is all in the head?”
Until recently, it was very difficult for people with fibromyalgia to be diagnosed. There was no clear medical definition of the syndrome, and doctors often failed to acknowledge that the pain and fatigue were real. People with fibromyalgia were often told that their symptoms were “all in their imaginations.”
However, there is good news for individuals awaiting diagnosis and recognition of their suffering. The National Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia Action Network recently announced there is now a consensus in Canada regarding the clinical definition and treatment of fibromyalgia. This means that all general practitioners and rheumatologists in the country have access to the tools necessary for making an official diagnosis and treating fibromyalgia, as well as chronic fatigue syndrome and myalgic encephalomyelitis.
How chiropractic care helps Reduces pain levels
The most difficult issue to deal with for fibromyalgia sufferers is the constant pain, which often affects the entire body for weeks or months at a stretch. Although these patients initially seek care for the pain they’re experiencing, they soon realize that chiropractic also helps restore overall health and aids the body in self-healing.
By adjusting/stimulating the spine to improve function, as well as incorporating some form of neurological rehabilitation, chiropractors can assist fibromyalgia patients in minimizing their painful pressure points. Many who suffer with this condition look for relief with chiropractic treatment options, and experience a decrease in their pain.
Increases range of motion
Chiropractors are also able to adjust the body’s joints and help them move better. For fibromyalgia patients, this can sometimes increase their range of motion and allow them to move more easily.
Sometimes it takes several treatments to see significant results, so it’s important to note that chiropractic treatment of fibromyalgia takes a commitment from the patient. The effects, however, are well worth the time invested.
Boosts sleep quality
A common by-product of the pain associated from fibromyalgia is lack of sleep. As anyone knows, being unable to snag several hours sleep can leave you feeling tired, foggy, and irritable.
By working with a chiropractor to improve their joints function and manage their pain, patients suffering from this condition can enjoy a deeper sleep, and stay asleep longer.
Complements other treatments
Sometimes medicines counteract with each other, or mix together and cause side effects. A big advantage of chiropractic care is it can be utilized in tandem with medications or other remedies, whether medical or natural.
An individual who is diagnosed with this condition should speak to his or her chiropractor about the various ways to treat it, and remember that there is not a one-stop solution. A treatment regimen should be built on a case-by-case basis tailored to the specific needs of that patient.