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Fibromyalgia is a syndrome that’s characterized by an increase in the body’s response to muscle and joint pain.
It is usually accompanied by episodes of fatigue, as well as digestive problems, ongoing headaches and tingling sensations in the extremities.
Its exact cause has not been discovered. However, health experts often associate it with genetic factors, a sedentary lifestyle and a few other diseases.
It goes without saying that each case is slightly different. However, we can say that patients suffering from fibromyalgia tend to show an increase in the levels of inflammation in their bodies.This, in turn, triggers a number of other reactions.
One of the biggest problems when it comes to diagnosing fibromyalgia is it tends to be easily confused with other common conditions. However, if it isn’t treated in early, it can have some serious repercussions. Thus, it’s important to find out how this condition manifests itself and what signs to look out for if you suspect it’s developing.
Let’s take a look at them.
One of the most problems people affected by this disease experience most frequently is stiffness in the body. This is especially in the first hours after getting up in the morning.
It’s a sensation similar to that suffered by patients diagnosed with arthritis, since it can also hinder movement.
2. Difficulties Concentrating
This symptom, is known as “fibroneblin” or “brain fog.” Unfortunately, it brings severe problems for the concentration and memory for those affected.
The person is unable to focus on their activities completely. In addition, he or she will sometimes experience short-term memory loss, too.
3. Feeling Exhausted
Chronic fatigue, or physical and mental exhaustion, is another common symptom among those who are contracting this syndrome.
A sensation of heaviness in the whole body, added to intense mental stress, prevents sufferers from taking part in normal daily activities. It generates a feeling of fatigue, even with simple things like waking up or carrying out light physical or intellectual tasks.
4. Full Body Pain
Patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia usually experience feelings of pain, whether mild or intense, throughout the body.
These pains may begin at a low intensity and may arrive intermittently. However, they tend to become intense, sharp and throbbing.
Such pains affect the ligaments, muscles and tendons. Unfortunately, they don’t usually respond quickly or easily to the effects of over-the-counter pain relievers.
5. Poor Quality of Sleep
Due to some of the physical and mental symptoms described above, people with this condition very often have difficulty achieving good quality sleep.
The neurotransmitters in the brain are altered by this condition. Thus, since they become less effective at stimulating the brain, rest is negatively affected.
That’s not to mention the fact that bodily discomfort caused by pain may be made worse by certain sleeping postures. This, in turn, causes interruptions in sleeping patterns.
6. Numbness and Tingling
A strong sensation of numbness in the extremities, as well as an annoying tingling feeling, can be a clear sign of the early stages of fibromyalgia.
Sufferers often report feeling that their skin is being “punctured,” especially in the hands and legs. The feeling sometimes lasts only a few minutes. However, in some instances it can linger for much longer.
These symptoms usually increase at night, or if the sufferer maintains the same position for a long time.
7. Digestive Problems
Imbalances in the inflammatory processes caused by fibromyalgia can come hand-in-hand with digestive symptoms similar to those caused by irritable bowel syndrome.
Likewise, most patients also present with recurrent abdominal pain, as well as gas retention and gastroesophageal reflux.
8. Environmental Sensitivity
Often, those affected by this disorder report greater sensitivity and allergy-like reactions to environmental factors such as noise and pollution.
The sufferer may experience symptoms similar to those of migraines. Thus, the body may react negatively to excess light, loud noises or the chemicals contained in some products.
9. Sensitivity to Temperature
Because of the continuous changes that the body undergoes due to imbalances in its inflammatory processes, patients with fibromyalgia have difficulty regulating their body temperature.
This symptom is sometimes so intense that it prevents sufferers from achieving adequate rest. This is due to the excessive feelings of heat or cold they experience when they try to sleep.
What’s more, sudden changes in the temperature of the environment usually have a stronger impact on sufferers. After all, they are much more sensitive to such changes than a healthy person would be.
One very important thing to thing about when discussing fibromyalgia is the episodes of depression sufferers often go through.
Unfortunately, this is a condition that has a notable impact on quality of life. This, it often causes emotional changes and feelings of deep sadness due to the limitations the sufferer will have to learn to live with.
As we’ve seen, understanding the development of fibromyalgia is not simple. Anyone going through it will require strong support from medical and psychological professionals, as well as from family or friends.
It’s essential to take all of the potential symptoms of fibromyalgia into account so that, in case of suspicion, sufferers can get a confirmed diagnosis or put their minds at ease as soon as possible.
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