Causes and Symptoms of Fibromyalgia

Causes and Symptoms of Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is characterized by a deep or burning pain all over the body, and it causes muscle twitches and muscle fatigue. Patients may report pain in the hips, shoulders, back, and the neck joints, which causes great discomfort and compromises the routine activities of the affected individual.

Some common causes of fibromyalgia are:

  • Emotional or physical abuse
  • Arthritis
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Depression
  • Lack of physical activity

The symptoms and intensity of the burning pain caused by fibromyalgia vary from person to person. The six types of fibromyalgia pains commonly experienced include allodynia, hyperalgesia, muscle pain, joint pain, paresthesia, and abdominal pain. A few common symptoms are:

  • Body pain: A characteristic feature of this condition is a pain in all parts of the body. A few areas like one’s back or neck may feel intense, chronic pain. However, the intensity and location of this pain may vary from time to time.
  • Extreme sensitivity: Fibromyalgia makes you very sensitive towards burning pain all over the body. Even a slight touch might feel quite painful for an individual with fibromyalgia.
  • Fatigue: With fibromyalgia, it is common to feel fatigued. Like pain, fatigue also varies from mild fatigue to complete exhaustion.
  • Lack of sleep: Due to intense and chronic pain all over the body, an affected individual is unable to sleep well. Lack of sleep adversely affects their lifestyle, and they do not feel refreshed. This condition is called “non-restorative sleep.”
  • Cognitive problems (fibro-fog): Fibromyalgia also causes cognitive issues such as poor concentration and attention span, memory issues, learning disorders, confusion, and slow speech.
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS): A few affected individuals develop irritable bowel syndrome. IBS is an inflammatory disorder of the intestinal tract which causes bloating and pain in the stomach. Moreover, one may develop diarrhea and constipation as well.
  • Depression: Fibromyalgia can cause depression in people. It is emotionally stressful to deal with this condition. Also, fibromyalgia triggers some hormonal changes which make an individual susceptible to developing depression. A depressed person with fibromyalgia may feel low and hopeless due to the burning pain and fatigue, and they are not in a position to enjoy life to the fullest.

Acupuncture, exercises, and massages are quite effective in controlling the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Patients can also visit a rheumatologist, a physiotherapist, or they can take some medicines such as muscle relaxants and analgesics to deal with the pain.