What is Fibromyalgia and How Does it Affect You?

Fibromyalgia is a disorder commonly diagnosed among women. The disease causes musculoskeletal pain in the entire body. According to research, fibromyalgia increases sensitivity to pain by amplifying the senses which results in feeling intense pain. The disease commonly results in fatigue, insomnia, irregular moods and affects memory.
Fibromyalgia can be hard to deal with and there is no cure for the condition. At best, it can be managed with medications and exercise.

How Can Fibromyalgia Affect You?
Once you start feeling the effects of fibromyalgia, it can affect your entire lifestyle. Since pain can be triggered very easily, it becomes difficult to manage routine tasks and you need to practice caution at all times. As there is no cure, the only option an infected person has is to practice self-care combined with medications which can help to manage and control pain.

How to identify Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia is not detectable by lab tests; however, doctors recommend certain tests to rule out other conditions that have similar symptoms. Some of the tests that a doctor may suggest are:

● Erythrocyte sedimentation rate.
● Rheumatoid factor.
● Complete blood count.
● Cyclic citrullinated peptide test.
● Thyroid function tests.

Since blood samples or x-rays cannot trace fibromyalgia, it falls to the doctor to diagnose the condition following a physical examination. Traditionally, doctors would check 18 different points on a person’s body by applying pressure and monitoring the body’s reaction to pain. Doctors commonly observe how the brain and spinal cord process pain signals and determine a diagnosis based on these factors. Fibromyalgia is hard to detect as it can coincide with other symptoms.
However, doctors usually suspect fibromyalgia if excruciating pain lasts for three months or longer.

How Would You Feel if You Have Fibromyalgia?
Usually, a person will wake up feeling tired or exhausted. There is a constant feeling of fatigue and tiredness caused by increased stress. It is quite common to have mood swings when you are suffering from fibromyalgia. Prolonged exposure to the disease can result in anxiety and depression. People who are suffering from fibromyalgia tend to have a feeling of being ‘drained’ or having no energy. Even the response to minor pain can be excessive and can cause great distress and discomfort.

How to Manage Fibromyalgia?
Despite having no cure, there are ways to manage this condition by exercising reasonable precaution in your daily life. Patients suffering from fibromyalgia can use distractors to manage pain. For example, you can listen to soft and relaxing music which stimulates the brain. Patients can take painkillers to reduce pain and discomfort temporarily. Physical therapy is important for improving muscle strength, stamina and flexibility. Patients can opt for massage therapies to relieve pain. Generally, patients with fibromyalgia need to exercise constant precaution in order to avoid triggering pain.

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