Symptoms of Fibromyalgia

Hi, it’s Tabitha again! Just thought that I would write another short post about the symptoms of Fibro to help people understand the many facets of the condition and ask my fellow fibro fighterz what all symptoms that they have and ask when you all were officially diagnosed. I copied the symptom list from WEB MD’s website.

Symptoms of fibromyalgia include:

  • Chronic muscle pain, muscle spasms or tightness
  • Moderate or severe fatigue and decreased energy
  • Insomnia or waking up feeling just as tired as when you went to sleep
  • Stiffness upon waking or after staying in one position for too long
  • Difficulty remembering, concentrating, and performing simple mental tasks (“fibro fog”)
  • Abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, and constipation alternating with diarrhea (irritable bowel syndrome)
  • Tension or migraine headaches
  • Jaw and facial tenderness
  • Sensitivity to one or more of the following: odors, noise, bright lights, medications, certain foods, and cold
  • Feeling anxious or depressed
  • Numbness or tingling in the face, arms, hands, legs, or feet
  • Increase in urinary urgency or frequency (irritable bladder)
  • Reduced tolerance for exercise and muscle pain after exercise
  • A feeling of swelling (without actual swelling) in the hands and feet

Also, more symptoms include: vulvodynia (which is chronic pain of the entire vagina for no known reason), shortness of breath, chest pains, nerve pain, burning of hands, arms, legs or feet, mood swings, extreme sensitivity to weather changes, rain, snow, heat and especially humidity and forgetfulness (usually due to fibro fog)

I have all of the above symptoms myself, 99% of them I have daily. I’m like an old woman that can predict changes in weather according to pain in my body hahaha.  Fibromyalgia is very misunderstood, especially because sufferers often look “fine on the outside”. There are usually no visible signs, we aren’t walking around with organs hanging out or covered in blood and bruises, so it seems impossible that we can possibly be in as much misery as we are. I know that I myself went for a long time without acknowledging my fibro to many people. I didn’t want to carry the stigma that surrounds it, which is pretty much that it is all in our heads, it’s a fake condition and we are just a bunch of whiners that would be all better if we just went for a walk or went shopping or got out more. So I just covered up the fact that I am a sufferer to anyone but the people closest to me. So instead of anyone knowing that I have a chronic condition, I just seemed like I turned into a hermit that didn’t leave my house much. Recently, I got tired of pretending nothing is wrong around everyone because the conclusions that people were drawing about me and my reclusiveness were becoming outrageous. I’m determined to help raise awareness and pray that we someday find a cure!!

So fellow fighterz, comment back and tell me which symptoms you are dealing with. I would love to hear from you. We all need to reach out and help lose the stigma surrounding our condition and be there for each other. No one understands better than a fellow fighter. If you know of anyone fighting this, let them know about this webzine. The more awareness we raise, the better the chance we have of finding a cure!!  

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4 comments

  1. I love this site, and I plan on making my ungrateful, selfish children read all the posts on this, I am so sick and tired of being thought that I am a lazy person. I know in my heart that I am not, while I did have some symptoms when I was younger, I wasn’t as bad as I am now. I used to split and haul wood and brush, lay cement, carry water in buckets, do roofing (all so we had a nice place to live). I loved going horseback riding, walking miles to a friends house(lived in BFE). I was so active. Then it all changed, neither of my children have ever seen that side of me until the last couple of years, but because I can’t do it as much as I used to they still think I am lazy and think they can follow suit.
    I can remember as a teenager laying in bed at night trying not to cry because my back hurt so bad. I would stretch and try and keep my back straight and relax it a little at a time so the pain would go away. The tension headaches i got were so bad, I couldn’t even lay my head on a pillow to sleep it off, I had to place my hands under my cheek just right so no pressure what so ever was put on my head, which as I got older turned into migrains. I had no clue that I could have had this horrible disease way back then.
    After I had my first child I started having pains in one of my hips as well as the head and back. After the second everything went downhill. I had pain in both hips now, was tired all the time, couldn’t stay awake for the life of me. I suffered through this for years, then the pain started getting worse. I hurt when it got cold, I hurt when the temp. changed more than 5 degrees in either direction. My skin started to feel like i had been burned in places and it moved around, I felt like I had the flu all the time. The aches and pain just got so bad. I went to the doctor and he sent me to a specialist, I was tested for lupis and rumitoid arthritis. When everything came back negative I was diagnosed in 2000 that I have Fibro. Ok now I know what, but what do I do. At that time there was nothing. My doctor gave me muscle relaxers and sometimes they worked, but made me even more tired.
    A couple years ago, I informed my doctor that I needed something, I just can’t take it anymore. So he sent me to the Fibro clinic here in Grand Rapids Mi. at Mary Free Bed. They were so understanding. I went through physical therapy and, while they were understanding they did not go easy on me. They helped me to learn how to keep my muscles stretched and exercised so that the pain wasn’t as bad. As they explained it to me, that when someone hurts they stopped doing things and because of that it allows the muscles to become tight and cause more pain. They got me exercising and stretched out and it helped. I also saw a psychitrist who helped me learn to except what was going on in my body even if I don’t like it. She also helped me learn breathing and mental exercises that would help me sleep at night so I had more energy. I was never really on pain meds so they didn’t have to ween me off those. They also tested my vitamin D levels and found that my levels were at an 8 and rickets(bone disease) is a 6, normal people should be around 20, however I don’t remember the exact. I started taking vitamin D pills (and will have to for the rest of my life) and I really started to feel a lot better. The doctor will not claim anything they did helped me because of the levels. I was told they still do not know everything it does for the body but I can tell you this, My eyesight has gotten better the last two times I have gotten my glasses.
    Over the years I have found that my body doesn’t deal well with opiates so I can’t take any pain meds anyway, The older I get the less I can take, really sucks, but I found natural methods that help with the pain. I have also found that if I do yoga (I use Yoga for Life on the veria channel) it helps me to not hurt so much, but I also have to force myself to do it, sometimes it is really really hard, and most of the time I just plain don’t, even though I know I should.
    I am now able to do all the things I couldn’t do with my kids even if it is a shortened period of time. I have learned to manage it, but the moment it starts getting colder everything just flies out the window.
    I will admit that for some unknown reason, I was able to find the love of my life. He loves me so much and tries to do everything to help me, but why was I able to find my true love and others can’t. I personally think it was gods way of making up for all the crap I have to deal with.
    I know now after reading some of these posts that I am not the only one who has a weird 6th sense. But I have always had it.
    I would love to point out to others that once I had worked through the worst of the pain that I found that I am more sensitive in other areas, I can feel it when it is going to rain because I can feel the moisture in the air. Now while this disease makes you feel more pain it also allows you to feel more pleasure. Your love life(once you worked through the pain down there.) can be, WOW! Some days are better than others, but I have learned to enjoy those moments when they arrive and so has my husband. There is an upside to this and when you are that much more sensitive to touch it makes everything feel better, not just worse.
    I have learned to manage my pain and take pleasure in this disease when I can, but it is still hard everyday to just crawl outa bed, let alone do anything. I know I have almost all of the symptoms but I try to make them work to my advantage when I can and just deal when I can not.
    It is so frustrating to have others think you are just lazy and faking, but I was lucky enough to find a friend who understands. He has a bad back and looks fine on the outside just as I do. But he knows!!!! If I mention I am in pain, he says yes I know this weather sucks. It is truly wonderful to just be able to sit around not talk and know that he understands, because sometimes you just need someone there but not need to talk to them, You get lonely being a recluse especially when it is not by choice. If he hurts he knows I do!!!! We don’t even have to complain to each other too terribly much because we know the other understands totally what you are going through. I think that he in himself is a medicine for my mind, heart, and soul. Just wish I could find that magic pill for my body!! but alas nothing has been found yet so I deal and suffer and enjoy as those moment come about.
    I know I have rambled on here but I hope something I have said will help someone else. That seems to be my goal. I feel drawn to help people and go out of my way to do so. I just can’t stop, have no clue why, but honestly I don’t want to. So if I have helped anyone at all it will make my life and suffering worth it.
    Love to you all, and big gentle bear hugs from me to you. Keep your chins up and thank all of you who have helped me to learn I am not alone and there are others that suffer along with me. I wish it were not so, but since it is Thank You!!!!

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