What is Fibromyalgia?
Sometimes referred to as "fibro" and "the invisible disease," fibromyalgia is a very debilitating that can strike anyone. Approximately three to six percent of the U.S. population suffers from this condition, which causes sufferers chronic pains and aches. The chronic pain and fatigue associated with this disease causes sufferers a general discomfort and a loss of the ability to function normally.
The earmarks of fibromyalgia are muscular aches and pains, stiffness of joints, and general fatigue. Most who suffer from fibromyalgia are faced with disturbed sleep, making it almost impossible to get a good night's rest. This only makes the general aches and pains of the disease that much worse.
What are the Symptoms of Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia causes widespread, chronic pain. No area of the body will remain untouched by the effects of fibro, though the pain is most commonly found in the back, shoulders, neck, and hands. Those who suffer from fibromyalgia have complained of a tingling or burning sensation, and numbness. Many who have been struck with fibro have experienced sensitized skin and nerve pain.
Other symptoms of fibro include impaired memory and concentration, anxiety, depression, dizziness, ringing in the ears, terrible headaches, and irritable bowels and bladder. Fibromyalgia most commonly causes sufferers a general, overall fatigue brought on by general pain, muscle ache, and sleeplessness.
What Causes Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia is a disease that is the focus of much intense scientific study. There are many theories about the causes of fibro, and in many cases it is the result of some trauma that sufferers have experienced. But there is much still unknown about this horrible disease, and modern medicine has still to pinpoint the cause of fibromyalgia. There is no known method of prevention. Scientific research indicates that some people may be genetically predisposed to fibromyalgia, but nothing has been accurately proven.
Is There a Cure For Fibromyalgia?
There is no known cure for fibromyalgia. In fact, as there is much still unknown about this disease and as there are no accurate tests for fibromyalgia, it is very hard to be diagnosed with this disease. Many doctors remain largely unfamiliar with the effects of fibro, and many doctors remain steadfast that fibromyalgia is not a true disease or physical ailment.
However, as awareness of fibromyalgia grows, new treatments are being explored. Sufferers of fibro have more options today, and as scientists learn more there is great hope that a true cure will be discovered in the future.
What Treatments are Available To Those Who Suffer From Fibromyalgia?
Over-the-counter pain medications can help to relieve some of the chronic pain caused by fibromyalgia. Most doctors will prescribe pain medication and antidepressants to those who suffer from fibro, and prescribe a light exercise regime to keep muscles loose and limber.
Daily stretching exercises, like yoga, can help alleviate some of the muscle pain associated with this disease. Hollistic methods and medicines are very popular with fibromyalgia sufferers. Proper diet and nutrition are very important to those who suffer from this disease, and there is a focus on eating healthy and treating the body very well.
As fibromyalgia causes sleeping problems, doctors have stressed the importance that those who have been diagnosed with fibro get plenty of healthy sleep. Plenty of sleep will lessen the fatigue and exhaustion that those with fibromyalgia almost constantly feel, and alleviate some of the pain in the muscles and joints.
With no known cure, and no way to reverse the effects of fibromyalgia, sufferers are forced to live with the disease for the remainder of their lives - or until a cure is found. Treatment must remain strict, and diet and exercise programs followed explicitly. Those who suffer from fibromyalgia will not be able to function at any high-level capacity. They will not be able to engage in strenuous activities, or even to hold a full-time job in most cases. But by maintaining treatment and living inside the realm of their physical capacity, those who suffer from fibro greatly reduce the pain that they experience. When more is understood about this disease, and scientists are able to come up with a comprehensive cure, perhaps fibromyalgia will finally be wiped out.