Living with Fibromyalgia

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What is Fibromyalgia?

Living with Fibromyalgia can be daunting. This is a chronic condition which is categorised by widespread pain, profound fatigue, and cognitive impairments. The word Fibromyalgia is simply broken down to mean; fibrous tissues (fibro) in the muscles (my) pain (algia). Fibromyalgia is also known as Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS) or Fibro and is classed as an “invisible illness”.

What are the symptoms when living with Fibromyalgia?

There are a range of symptoms associated with this condition which include but are not limited to-

  • Muscle pain, spasms and stiffness
  • Nerve pain and paraesthesia
  • Fatigue and sleep disturbances
  • “Fibro fog” which is a problem with memory and concentration.
  • Sensitivity to light, smell, touch, sound, and environmental factors such as weather changes
  • Restless legs
  • Headaches
  • Bowel and bladder issues
  • Low mood

What can alleviate my Fibromyalgia symptoms?

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Unfortunately, there is no miracle cure for those living with Fibromyalgia however, symptoms and “flare ups” of pain can be managed by-

  • Taking prescribed medications
  • Creating better sleeping habits
  • Carrying out aerobic exercise- hydrotherapy is also an effective treatment.
  • Pacing yourself which includes knowing your own limits, balancing periods of activity with periods of rest and setting boundaries (not being afraid to say “no” to make your health a priority)
  • Contact an HCPC registered Physiotherapist for advice and hands on treatment.

How can Physiotherapy help Fibromyalgia?

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Physiotherapists can use several techniques to help improve your muscle strength, coordination and range of movement. Techniques such as mobilisations, acupressure, soft tissue release and deep tissue massage are beneficial. This will aid blood flow, increase your range of movement, relieve symptoms of pain and stiffness and assist with relaxation.

Acupuncture is another successful treatment for reducing pain with Fibromyalgia. Acupuncture is the use of fine needles to stimulate the sensory nerves which results in your body’s natural painkiller called endorphins being released.

Here at Physioflexx, we offer Physio-led Pilates and Yoga classes which are beneficial in increasing your strength and flexibility as well as providing relaxation which can attribute to a more restorative night’s sleep. As these classes are a gentle form of exercise and are facilitated by a Physiotherapist practicing person-centred care, these classes are safe and effective for chronic pain sufferers.

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