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It is normal to experience pain now and then. But if your pain is widespread and persistent, you may be dealing with fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia is a condition that causes persistent pain, exhaustion, mood fluctuations, and unpredictable sleep habits. Because the symptoms differ from person to person, it can be difficult to diagnose.  If you have already been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, or if you believe you may have it, physical therapy can help.

Fibromyalgia 101

Fibromyalgia is a broad term that refers to a group of symptoms that a person may experience. While the exact causes of fibromyalgia are unknown, some doctors believe it is caused by an overactive sympathetic nervous system, which is the part of your body that triggers “fight or flight” responses.

Despite the fact that this theory has never been clinically proven, it makes sense because the first fibromyalgia symptoms tend to appear after experiencing a physically or emotionally traumatic event. Can you relate?

Fibromyalgia often appears to affect more women than men, and the risk of experiencing it increases when you have a family member with the same disease. If you have fibromyalgia, these symptoms may be familiar:

  • Sensitivity to touch/numbness

  • Chronic and/or sharp muscle pains

  • Forgetfulness or disorientation

  • Tender areas of the body

  • Fatigue

  • Nausea

  • Disrupted sleep cycles/irregular sleep schedules

  • Fluctuations in mood

It is also likely you could be dealing with other diseases as well, such as:

  • Chronic fatigue syndrome

  • Irritable bowel syndrome

  • Rheumatoid arthritis

  • Migraines

  • Obesity

  • Depression and anxiety

Physical Therapy Can Help You Find Pain Relief For Fibromyalgia

Because fibromyalgia is a collection of symptoms rather than a disease, there is no single streamlined treatment. 

Physical therapy will usually begin with pain-relieving techniques that will help you feel better and speed up your recovery. This could include trigger point therapy, massage, stretching, electrical stimulation, or other therapeutic methods recommended by your physical therapist.

To design a treatment plan that is tailored to your specific needs, our physical therapist will assess your physical capacity, review your medical history, and address your current symptoms.

You will move on to active therapies like bodybuilding, range-of-motion exercises, and aerobic activities after you have completed your passive pain management therapies.

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