What is Fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia is a disorder that causes widespread pain in muscles and skeleton, fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues. Fibromyalgia amplifies the actual pain you feel by changing the way your brain processes signals of pain. Researchers believe that women are more likely to develop fibromyalgia than men. Also, the disorder usually sets in after a physical trauma or other reasons like infections, surgeries or psychological stress. Sometimes, the symptoms tend to accumulate over time without a single cause to be pointed out.

Many people who suffer from fibromyalgia also suffer from anxiety, depression, irritable bowel syndrome, tension headaches and temporomandibular joint disorders. Although there is no known cure to fibromyalgia, there are many medications that help to control symptoms. Also, relaxation, stress-reduction and exercise go a long way in controlling the symptoms of fibromyalgia.


The most prominent symptoms of fibromyalgia are:

  • Fatigue
  • Body ache
  • Difficulties with cognition
  • Depression
  • Cramps and pain in lower abdomen


It is believed that fibromyalgia is caused by changes in the neurotransmitters of your brain. The abnormality of certain chemical levels in the brain could trigger such a disorder. Therefore, the pain causing transmission happens repeatedly, or else exaggerates lesser amounts of pain to feel unbearable. In this condition, the pain receptors of the brain become over-sensitive and overreact to pain signals.
The causes of fibromyalgia are not known for certain. However, some contributing factors may include:

  • Women are more likely to develop the disorder than men.
  • Physical or emotional trauma
  • Genetics
  • Infections
  • Rheumatic disease like rheumatoid arthritis


Possible risks of fibromyalgia are:

  • Occurs in women more than men
  • Family history
  • Occurrence of rheumatic disease such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus


To prevent fibromyalgia, it is imperative that you:

  • Reduce your stress by avoiding over-exertion
  • Get enough sleep and relaxing everyday
  • Deep breathing exercises such as yoga and meditation

How is it diagnosed?

Earlier, doctors used to press eighteen parts firmly, to check how many of them ache. These days, fibromyalgia can be diagnosed if a person has widespread pain for more than three months, without a...

How is it treated?

It is of utmost importance that you take enough care of yourself, to treat fibromyalgia. You must bring certain lifestyle changes like regular sleep, staying stress-free, eating healthy and exercising regularly.

Two other methods us..

  • Drug therapy

    One mode of medication cannot cure all symptoms of fibromyalgia. Some common options include: 

    • Painkillers – Over-the-counter painkillers may be suggested to reduce body pain. Narcotics are not advised because they are addictive and symptoms may worsen over time.
    • Anti-seizure drugs – Medicines that treat epilepsy are useful for some pains.
    • Anti-depression drugs – Drugs that cure depression decrease psychological issues associated with fibromyalgia. Sedatives or sleep inducing drugs may also be prescribed in some cases.


  • Psychological therapy

    Talking and counselling sessions with experienced counsellors can help you overcome stress and change your lifestyle towards a stress-free life.

When do I contact the doctor?

Consult a doctor if you have widespread pain in your body, cognitive difficulties, headache, depression and cramps in lower abdomen.

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