You’ve probably heard of fibromyalgia and how it affects thousands of people all over the world. Compared to other races, it is more common in white people and cases account to more women affected than men. It is said that women are more affected by this condition because they are more emotional, expressive and have lower adaptability to problems and adversities.
Almost all patients suffering from fibromyalgia complain of widespread crippling pain. They are often hard to treat and can occur at any time of the day. However, pain is not the only symptom that may occur as a result of fibromyalgia. A group of symptoms like sleep disturbances, decrease in overall weight and many others form the so called fibromyalgia syndrome. Although these are all part of fibromyalgia, medical practitioners debate that they are only umbrella effects of pain and that they are not really direct effects of fibromyalgia.
Many controversies about fibromyalgia have surfaced over the years. There is no concrete evidence that indeed fibromyalgia is really existing and true. Since pain is a subjective feeling that cannot be measured by any scientific instrument, it is difficult for other people to believe. More so in cases where fibromyalgia is present in people who have anxiety disorders, depression and post traumatic disorder. These psychological conditions may alter the proper and rational mind set of a person.
Psychiatric patients may feel pain based on imagination or even tactile hallucinations. Testimonies coming from these groups of people are often classified as unreliable and lack the credibility to prove something as true or existing. Aside from this, pain is a subjective data. It is only felt by the person suffering from fibromyalgia; it cannot be described by any other person. The lack of instruments and medical equipment to measure the extent of pain is also one hindrance that is a source of debate for many health practitioners.
However, pain is a very important manifestation in the world of medicine. Pain can alter a lot of physiological processes, therefore any verbal complaint is considered serious; it has to be addressed in the quickest possible time.
What is fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia is a condition or a group of manifestations and not a disease by nature. From the term itself, it has something to do with pain in the muscular tissues of the body. The most definitive sign of fibromyalgia is pain. Although there are many cases of known fibromyalgia’s, there are also those that are undiscovered because of the lack of physical manifestations such as pain. To be considered widespread, the pain must be present in both sides of the body. In addition it must be aggravated when pressure is applied in the specific body parts.
According to several surveys, people diagnosed with fibromyalgia have higher cost of health expenditures than those who have other conditions. It has been shown that patients spend twice to thrice more on pain medications and therapies. Money spent for health care services even increased after a formal diagnosis of fibromyalgia is confirmed.
Fibromyalgia pain control
Since fibromyalgia gets better over time, the goal of treatment is geared towards pain relief. Pain may seem to be a very minor problem but it can cause even more serious side effects. Umbrella effects of pain make up the so called fibromyalgia syndrome. Sleep disturbance, weight loss, mood swings, changes in appetite and a lot more compose this syndrome. Anxiety disorder and depression may also occur as a result of stress and fatigue.
Antidepressants and Fibromyalgia
Antidepressants may be used to control symptoms associated with fibromyalgia. This class of medication does not only address those with psychiatric disorders but it can also suppress the brain from over interpreting pain stimuli thus there is pain reduction. Those containing opioids are mostly prescribed for chronic pain. However, a major consideration has to be made by health care providers because this can greatly cause addiction. Tramadol and paracetamol combined together make up a great pain relief management. A less potent type of opioid is codeine, it can also be combined with paracetamol. In addition, it has lesser side effects and discomforts.
Alternative therapy such as massage therapy, acupuncture, physical therapy and the like are proven to help relieve the pain.
Support and Understanding
Since fibromyalgia may be a lifelong condition, a person having this condition should have the support of family and friends. Many people are judged because they have this condition because it is quite peculiar to many. Fibromyalgia is not a life threatening condition in itself, it is only made fatal when the effects of pain are no longer managed. The best way to encourage a patient with fibromyalgia to seek further health care assistance is through support and understanding. Laying down options and involving him in major decisions is the best way to start his recovery.