May 12, 2009
Heard of Fibromyalgia?
Today is National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day, so I thought I'd talk about it here. The first person I ever met with fibromyalgia was a roommate I had during one of my hospital stints. She was in so much pain that I felt like I should never complain about my IBS or migraines again. Her pain was pervasive and she had had many tests before her diagnosis.
Many of us are aware that fibromyalgia involves widespread pain and fatigue. But there are some common myths around the condition. The Mayo Clinic website has a helpful article that busts nine common myths about fibromyalgia. I have summarized the first six below.
- Myth: Most doctors don't believe fybromyalgia is a real condition. Truth: Fibromyalgia is defined by a list of symptoms and most doctors believe these symptoms are real.
- Myth: Fibromyalgia damages your joints. Truth: While the pain of fibromyalgia may be severe, it does not damage your muscles, joints or bones.
- Myth: You look fine so there's nothing wrong with you. Truth: Friends, family and co-workers may hold this belief because they don't understand. Be willing to talk about it. Raise awareness.
- Myth: You got the fibromyalgia diagnosis because your doctor couldn't find anything wrong with you. Truth: Fibromyalgia is a specific diagnosis based on a specific set of criteria devleoped by The American College of Rheumatology. But, diagnosing fibromyalgia can take time because there's no single test that can confirm you have it.
- Myth: Fibromyalgia only causes pain. Truth: People with fibromyalgia also often experience fatigue and difficulty sleeping, headaches, sensitivity to light, dizziness, memory problems, and numbness and tingling in the arms and legs. IBS, bladder control problems and mood disorders often accompany fibromyalgia.
- Myth: It's no use going to the doctor because no treatments for the condition exist. Truth: There's no standard treatment for it, but the FDA has now approved one drug for treating fibromyalgia and there are many options for controlling the pain, including medications, lifestyle changes, and alternative treatments.
I'm feeling tingling in my hands and legs, migraines, dizziness, fatigue, depression...
I believe it requires pain, isn't it?
I don't feel pain. I hope so!
I always read about it but wasn't really aware of what it really means.
I also have IBS.
I used to go to a chiropractor and get massage but I can't afford to any more.
Blessings dear one!
thank you so much for shedding greater light on this particular diagnosis. especially helping to dispel the myth that it's not real. safe hugs!
It's very important for survivors to know how our minds can afffect our bodies this way because, unfortunately, the medical community doesn't get it! I saw numerous medical professionals and was on my way to the Mayo Clinic for a liver biopsy before I myself came across info on how PTSD can cause these kinds of underlying issues.
The good news is: when we heal our PTSD these problems heal, too. When I took back the power trauma stripped me of my body no longer needed to act out to get my attention. The debilitating fibro, CFS, bone, stomach, intestinal and liver problems that had persisted for 10 years disappeared as my mental state improved.
Now, how can we educate the medical community about this??? I had classic PTSD. If someone had just recognized the symptoms or asked me the right question I would have been healed so much sooner!
(Marj, please email me re: guest post: parastiesof.themind @ yahoo.com)
Kiwi: Thanks for visiting and thanks for sharing your story, too. I wish you much healing and comfort.
I always thing it is so important for a person to trust his or her own instincts when it comes to mind body and soul. And to find professionals that think along the same lines.
Dr. Deb: That's the most wise, insightful comment you've ever left on my blog. Thanks for leaving it here. I appreciate your thoughts.
Mile 191: Yes, by all means. Thanks for passing the word along.
I had Fibro (we called it ME/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) for 5 years and was bedridden. I always believed it was my soul calling for help, and now this latest r/s was my heartfinally calling for healing after 40 years.
I shall continue to read. Much love from my little girl inside to yours.
Links to this post: