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  • Writer's pictureGrace Harrop

FIBROMYALGIA, unlocking symptoms and treatments to this complex condition.

Updated: 6 days ago

Fibromyalgia is a complex chronic pain disorder characterised by widespread musculoskeletal pain and tenderness. People with fibromyalgia often experience a heightened sensitivity to pain, which can make even gentle pressure or touch painful. This condition can affect various parts of the body, leading to widespread discomfort and fatigue. In addition to physical symptoms, fibromyalgia can also impact cognitive functions, causing issues with memory, concentration, and overall mental clarity. Many individuals with fibromyalgia also report experiencing frequent headaches, which can further contribute to the overall burden of the condition.

AI image of woman with headache
Fibromyalgia can cause mental fatigue and headaches

The Complex Nature of Fibromyalgia

According to the National Health Service (NHS) website, fibromyalgia (FM) remains a complex and enigmatic condition and medical experts cannot agree on a single origin. While the precise cause of fibromyalgia remains a mystery, ongoing research suggests that it could be linked to irregular levels of specific chemicals within the brain, along with alterations in the central nervous system that play a crucial role in processing signals from the body. There is growing evidence to support the notion that genetic predisposition may contribute to the development of FM in some individuals.

Furthermore, it is important to note that FM can often be triggered or exacerbated by various physical or emotional traumas. Instances such as injuries, infections, or high levels of stress have been identified as potential catalysts for the onset of FM symptoms in many cases. These triggering events can significantly impact the central nervous system and lead to the manifestation of widespread pain, fatigue, and other debilitating symptoms commonly associated with fibromyalgia.

There are several other conditions which are also associated with fibromyalgia these may be osteoarthritis where damage occurs to joints which causes pain. It can also include rheumatoid arthritis which is when the immune system mistaken the attacks healthy cells called in the joints causing pain and swelling. It has also been linked to IBS which is a condition that affects the digestive system and can cause pain and bloating in the abdomen. 

The Ongoing Challenges in Diagnosing and Treating Fibromyalgia

One of the major challenges regarding FM lies in the lack of comprehension surrounding this condition. Historically, healthcare practitioners have cast doubt on the legitimacy of fibromyalgia as a real condition, which has hindered the accurate diagnosis and effective treatment of patients. While there has been some progress in recent years in recognizing the validity of FM, misconceptions and uncertainties still persist.

Despite some advancements in understanding FM, diagnosing the condition remains a formidable task. The symptoms can often be vague and overlapping with other disorders, making it difficult to pinpoint with certainty. This diagnostic complexity can lead to delays in treatment and unnecessary suffering for individuals afflicted by FM.

Moreover, the limited availability of proven treatments further compounds the challenges faced by those living with the condition. While certain interventions and therapies may offer relief to some patients, there is no universally recognised cure or standard treatment protocol for fibromyalgia.

If you think you may be showing signs of having fibromyalgia, or have already had a diagnosis The charity fibromyalgia action UK has lots of information and links to support groups.

At Bloom Well-being We are experienced and trained and helping support clients with chronic conditions. Massage therapy works fantastically alongside prescription medication as well as other self-care approaches such as movement and meditation. 

Close up photo of massage therapy
Massage for Fibromyalgia

A 2011 study showed massage therapy caused reductions and sensitivity to pain in trigger points as well as lowering anxiety levels and increasing sleep quality. A feather study review in 2014 found massage therapy had immediate effect on improving pain reducing anxiety and depression. 

Therapeutic Approaches for Clients with Fibromyalgia

Working with clients with fibromyalgia is a long-term process as the symptoms can flare up sporadically. Creating a relationship built on trust is extremely important as well as adjusting techniques session by session depending on any flare-ups that may be happening. We avoid any deep pressure massage and focus more on gentle touch and myofascial release. Acupuncture can often be very useful when working with Fibromyalgia clients too. 

Wrist acupuncture
Acupuncture can help symptoms of Fibromyalgia

We always do an in-depth consultation with all new clients and at this point you can share how your fibromyalgia presents itself and your experience of its symptoms. We would also check in at the start and end of every session to see how we can help you on that particular day. We have heated beds and plenty of blankets to make sure that we get the room at the correct temperature for your comfort.

You can message us directly with any questions you have about your treatment.

Or you can go straight to our booking page and book a remedial massage for pain management right now. 

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