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How Fibromyalgia Affects Your Entire Body

Apr 01, 2023

If you’re one of the estimated 4 million people in the United States who lives with fibromyalgia, you know that it can impact many aspects of your life and wellbeing. Understanding just how this chronic pain condition affects your body may help you better manage it.

One important part of managing fibro is to get care from qualified professionals. Our team at Florida Pain Management Institute is pleased to provide just that from our locations in Delray Beach and Boynton Beach, Florida. Take a few minutes to learn more about fibromyalgia’s physical impact, as well as ways we can help.

Fibromyalgia pain

Pain is the primary symptom of fibromyalgia. And unlike other chronic pain conditions that affect one particular body part, fibromyalgia pain can extend throughout your body.

In particularly, you may notice aches and tenderness in your:

If you do develop pain in your neck or shoulders, you might also be prone to headaches. In fact, about 55.8% of people with fibromyalgia report having migraines

Fibromyalgia fatigue

Fibromyalgia is linked with non-restorative sleep and exhaustion, for a few reasons. Whenever you’re in pain, it’s easy for your sleep to suffer. You may struggle to fall or stay asleep, or wake up in the morning feeling more fatigued than refreshed. 

All of that can lead to sleepiness or fatigue throughout the day. And when you’re feeling wiped out, exercise that might help your pain may be unappealing or even impossible.

And because sleep loss can worsen physical pain, fibromyalgia-related sleep problems can feel like a Catch-22.

Fibromyalgia and your brain

Fibromyalgia can also affect your brain chemistry, making way for cognitive issues like forgetfulness, slowed reaction times, difficulty concentrating, and feeling especially distracted. Collectively, these symptoms are also known as “fibro fog.” 

Those symptoms paired with daily challenges around pain and limitations can also fuel mental health issues. Roughly one in five people with fibromyalgia lives with anxiety or depression as well.

Fibromyalgia and digestion

Fibromyalgia often coincides with digestive challenges. Up to 70% of people with the condition, for example, grapple with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). While IBS affects people differently, common symptoms include diarrhea, constipation, gassiness, and cramping.

And symptoms of both fibromyalgia and IBS can flare up in response to stress, interfere with restful sleep, and worsen fatigue.

While the link between fibromyalgia and IBS and fibromyalgia isn’t fully understood, some experts speculate that they’re parts of a singular condition. 

Good news about fibromyalgia and your body

Learning how vastly fibromyalgia can impact your body can seem daunting, but there is good news to be had. Virtually all fibro symptoms can be treated, and both medical and lifestyle measures can go a long way.

Depending on the specifics of your condition and overall health, our team may recommend:

  • Prescription medication, for reduced pain or better moods
  • Trigger point injections, during painful flare-ups
  • Psychotherapy, for emotional support
  • Improved eating, exercise, and sleep habits

Mindfulness exercises and approved dietary supplements may also help ease your symptoms, or prevent them from worsening.

To learn more about fibromyalgia or to get the care and support you need, call Florida Pain Management Institute or request an appointment through our website.