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What is Fibromyalgia?

What is Fibromyalgia?


Fibromyalgia is a musculoskeletal syndrome associated with chronic pain, muscle and joint stiffness, and fatigue. Women are more likely to get fibromyalgia. However, it can happen at any age. Due to the nature of this chronic pain condition, many fibromyalgia sufferers also experience poor quality of sleep, which tends to exacerbate their symptoms.

Living with Fibromyalgia: The Symptoms

Unfortunately, this is an incurable condition with most patients having to learn how to cope with and manage the pain for the remainder of their lives. Fibromyalgia can go undiagnosed for a long time because the symptoms go un-noticed. However, this condition has often been associated with osteoarthritis, bursitis and tendinopathy.

Everybody has these tender or trigger points, which are usually somewhat tender but for people with it, applying minimal pressure to these tender points causes high levels of pain and discomfort.

Symptoms include aching, stiffness, tiredness, and widespread muscle pain. This in turn can lead to cases of depression, anxiety and social isolation.

Other common symptoms of fibromyalgia include:

The benefits of physiotherapy

Physiotherapy and exercise can be very beneficial in treating fatigue, pain and muscle weaknesses caused by it. Patients are often reluctant to start an exercise program, as they may be afraid that it will make their symptoms worse.

Physiotherapy techniques such as dry needling, massage and joint mobilisation can help to improve muscle tightness and tenderness while a tailored exercise program can help to improve fatigue levels and act as a mood booster.

A chartered physiotherapist can tailor a specific exercise program depending on the individual to help them manage their fibromyalgia pain. Increasing flexibility and strengthening muscles will reduce fibromyalgia pain and help to improve the lifestyles of its sufferers. This can be done through activities such as walking, Pilates, stretching and strengthening exercises. You should do low impact exercises if you have fibromyalgia. Low impact exercises are less stressful on joints.

Regular exercise and physiotherapy treatments can help fibromyalgia patients improve their sleep patterns, eating habits, energy levels and overall general health.

Here at Ballsbridge Physiotherapy Clinic, our physiotherapists are expertly trained in helping individuals suffering with fibromyalgia to manage their pain. If you would like to book an appointment, contact us here.

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