Experts are unsure what really causes Fibromysalgia, but the popular opinion is that it’s a problem with how your brain and spinal cord process pain signals from your nerves.
You’re more likely to get Fibromyalgia if:
- You’re a Woman (women experience Fibromyalgia more than men)
- If you have another painful disease, such as arthritis, or an infection
- If you have a disorder that effects your mood, like anxiety or depression.
- If you were ever physically or emotionally abused or have PTSD.
- If you do not regularly exercise.
Simply put, you ache all over but the common symptoms include:
- Muscle pain, burning, twitching, or tightness
- Low pain threshold or tender points
- Draining fatigue
- Trouble concentrating and remembering, called “fibro fog”
- Insomnia or not sleeping well
- Feeling nervous, worried, or depressed
Fibromyalgia can feel similar to Osteoarthritis, bursitis, and tendinitis. But unlike these conditions, Fibromyalgia will effect your entire body and you will feel pain and stiffness all over.
Other symptoms can include:
- Belly pain, bloating, queasiness, constipation, and diarrhea (irritable bowel syndrome)
- Dry mouth, nose, and eyes
- Sensitivity to cold, heat, light, or sound
- Peeing more often
- Numbness or tingling in your face, arms, hands, legs, or feet
Your primary care physician will examine you and ask you about your past medical issues and about other close family members.
There’s no tests that can tell us that you have Fibromyalgia.
Instead, because the symptoms are so similar to other conditions, your doctor will want to rule out these other illnesses such as an underactive thyroid, different types of arthritis, and lupus.
Your doctor may take blood tests to check your hormone levels and other signs of inflammation. You might be subject to an X-ray as well.
How Physical Therapy can help
Physical Therapists teach self-management skills to you with Fibromyalgia.
A Physical Therapist can show you how to relieve symptoms of pain and stiffness in everyday life.
- Build strength and improve their range of motion
- Get relief from deep muscle pain
- Coaching on preventing flare-ups can managing symptoms