THE EMOTIONAL IMPACT OF FIBROMYALGIA…

Fibromyalgia

If you have been a healthy, active person for most of your life and then you develop fibromyalgia, the symptoms can create havoc on your life. Simple things like your inability to engage in activities you once enjoyed can cause you to become frustrated.

Your inability to meet the needs of your children, spouse, or job may contribute to your feeling a sense of inadequacy and worthlessness.

However your not alone, may people with other illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis, heart disease, cancer, diabetes or other chronic illnesses have the same reactions.

Unfortunately though, as fibro patients have no obvious physical or lab abnormalities many are told there is nothing wrong, it is just the stress of every day life.

Research has shown that up to 30% of fibro patients can experience psychological distress. They believe that some of the emotional reactions could be due to the way fibro affects neurotransmitters and other regulatory systems in our bodies.

Hormones, thyroid, adrenal and immune problems can all affect how your feel and just the fact that you cannot get a good night’s sleep is enough to make anyone irritable, anxious and depressed.

It has been proven that stress aggravates fibromyalgia so reducing stress could help fibro sufferers. They say that counselling and or stress management can help you cope with fibromyalgia symptoms and improve your overall stress reactions.

Some fibro patients are reluctant to seek counselling to help them deal with the emotional impact of their illness as they are sick and tired of being told its all in their head.

There are some counsellors out there who persist in the mistaken believe that fibromyalgia is a purely emotional illness. It is therefore essential that you seek help from a knowledgeable therapist who has experience in dealing with the problems of fibromyalgia.

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13 thoughts on “THE EMOTIONAL IMPACT OF FIBROMYALGIA…

  1. This made me think of the chicken and egg scenario – as in “which came first, the fybro’ or the stress.
    I have been on the roundabout that you hint at – avoiding doctors in order to avoid being labelled as a stress head.

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    • I really understand what you mean, because it’s happened to me so often. But this time, I had a new GP and I just went to her and said about how all my joints ached especially my neck, and how I couldn’t concentrate or remember things etc. So she gave me lots of blood tests and of course they all came back negative, so I thought ‘here we go – this is where she labels me a hypochondriac.’ But this time she referred me to a rheumatologist, who put me through a series of actions and then when he heard my blood tests were all normal, said ‘oh yes, that’s typical of fibromyalgia, which is what I’m sure you’ve got’ – especially when he heard about my long-term, chronic insomnia.

      He was ever so sensible – said ‘if we get you sleeping, the symptoms may well disappear’. He prescribed some medication … I’ve been sleeping much better … and lo and behold, the symptoms have gone.

      But he said mine was typical of an ‘episode’ – some people have chronic pain, in others like me, it flares up from time to time.

      He even gave me a booklet about fibromyalgia!

      So I would go to your GP, and if they aren’t helpful, ask to be referred to a rheumatologist … :yes:

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      • Mine was spotted by someone who was actually dealing with my back problem and he asked me to keep a diary of where my pain was and my symptoms. When he read it he said he thought it was Fibro and referred me to a Rheumatologist.

        I have MAJOR problems with my sleep and would love to know what he gave you to help you sleep as I am sure like he said if you sleep better, the pain is easier. What was the drug he gave you for that? I take Amatryptyline but have taken it for years.

        So pleased to hear yours is settled at the moment, we could not cope if the episodes were 24/7. Take care x

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      • Yes, they’ve given me amitriptylene as they tell me that it is very good for reducing the pain pathways and also for relaxation. I take one 25 mg each night with 2 Phenergan. Doesn’t always work, but I do feel so much better.

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    • Sorry to hear that m, I hope you saw the right one in the end. It’s the luck of the draw really, I was lucky that it was spotted by someone who was looking for something else, but I can understand the label we get as I do have some friends that don’t belive it !!!

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  2. Sorry to hear that – having suffered temporarily the last fortnight with broken nights sleep due to Sciatica I do understand how stressful it can be – doesn’t help when your neighbour who works nights starts his DIY at 11.15pm on Saturday either!

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  3. Thankfully, I haven’t suffered from this, but I have a lot of sympathy for anyone who’s suffering. My advice is always to listen to the body, no matter what the tests say… and to experiment as to what works. Sometimes its something completely unexpected… not even a pill. Wishing good health to all sufferers.

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