Fibromyalgia is a condition that affects about 4 million adults in the United States. In our Sioux Falls chiropractic office, we often see patients that have been diagnosed with this condition. There are not any known specific causes of fibromyalgia and often times it is diagnosed by a patient’s medical doctor when they can’t find any other reason or cause for their symptoms. This is a condition that can cause physical pain, loss of sleep and/or emotional distress. People suffering from fibromyalgia may appear totally “normal” in appearance but may suffer from a variety of symptoms that aren’t readily apparent.
Who is Affected by Fibromyalgia?
According to the CDC, fibromyalgia (or fibro) can affect people of any age but is more likely to occur in adults. Often fibro is diagnosed during middle age and becomes more common the older a person is. Women are more likely to be affected than men. Also, having an autoimmune disease, such as rheumatoid arthritis, may increase the likelihood of fibro. There is also indication that other factors such as stress or PTSD (post-traumatic stress syndrome), viral infections, obesity, or having a family history of fibro may make someone more likely to develop this condition. People with fibro have an increased risk of hospitalization, a lower quality of life, a high rate of depression, and an increased risk of suicide when compared to the general population.
Signs, Symptoms and Diagnosis
One person’s symptoms of fibromyalgia may not be the same as another’s. According to the CDC the following are symptoms often associated with fibromyalgia: Pain and stiffness over much of the body, headaches, fatigue, depression, sleep disruptions, anxiety, and problems with thinking/concentration. Less common symptoms may include tingling/numbness in the hands and/or feet, jaw pain, or digestive issues. Diagnosis of fibromyalgia usually is based on a patient’s health history, symptoms, examination, x-rays and blood work. Since there is no specific known cause of fibro x-rays, blood work and physical examination may be “normal.”
Help for Fibromyalgia in Sioux Falls
Regular physical activity may be able to help the symptoms of fibromyalgia. People with fibro should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise weekly. Another aspect that may help is to eat a healthy diet that includes various whole foods and avoids inflammatory foods. Some medications may also help those suffering from fibromyalgia. As a chiropractor, I have found many patients report improvement in their pain levels, stiffness and headaches with chiropractic adjustments. If you suffer from fibro and would like to see if chiropractic care may be able to help you, please contact our Sioux Falls office. One of our chiropractors would welcome the opportunity try to improve your life with chiropractic care.