Fibromyalgia is a condition characterized by widespread, chronic pain in muscles, tendons, ligaments and other soft tissues, accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues. Over 7 million Americans are afflicted with fibromyalgia – most of them women – many of whom have cases so severe they spend entire days in bed.

Causes of Fibromyalgia

Researchers don’t know what causes fibromyalgia, but it most likely involves a variety of factors working together. Symptoms often begin after some sort of physical trauma (i.e. surgery, infection, or accident) or significant psychological stress (divorce, death in the family, etc.). In other cases, the symptoms gradually occur and strengthen over time, with no single triggering event as a clear cause.

The fact that there’s no known cause makes fibromyalgia particularly difficult to treat with standard care. There is no cure for fibromyalgia, and though medications can sometimes control some of the symptoms, people suffering from fibromyalgia generally experience a dramatic decrease in their ability to function.

Symptoms of Fibromyaligia

  • widespread musculoskeletal pain, including numerous “tender points”
  • fatigue, even after a full night’s sleep
  • cognitive and memory problems (“fibro fog”)
  • sleep disturbances (often due to pain)
  • headaches
  • morning stiffness
  • painful menstrual periods
  • numbness or tingling of extremities

Many people who have fibromyalgia also have irritable bowel syndrome, tension headaches, anxiety, temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders and depression.

Benefits of Massage Therapy for Fibromyalgia

A survey published in the Fibromyalgia Network Journal revealed that fibromyalgia patients overwhelming preferred massage therapy over other nondrug therapies. (July 2004) [perhaps place this in a side column or as its own graphic]

Massage for fibromyalgia syndrome can:

  • reduce pain
  • treat and/or prevent chronic tension headaches
  • decrease anxiety
  • decrease depression
  • increase sleep hours
  • increase quality of sleep
  • improve quality of sleep over time
  • reduce tender points
  • decrease cortisol levels
  • decrease stiffness
  • decrease fatigue
  • work well in an integrative treatment plan

If you’re currently struggling with Fibromyalgia or any other chronic pain disorder, give Pharaoh Bodyworks a call today. We specialize in treating patients with Fibromyalgia and chronic pain complaints, and will help get you back on your feet.

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