We call fibromyalgia the mystery disease because patients who suffer from it report chronic body-wide pain. They also endure symptoms, including “persistent fatigue, headaches, cognitive or memory impairment, morning stiffness and non-restorative sleep.” In the most mysterious manifestation of all of its symptoms, the pain of fibromyalgia can migrate from one body zone on one day, to a completely different part of the body the next day.
Did you know that Over 6 million Americans suffer from this illness? Ninety percent of them are women. Life changing, chronic pain and fatigue stop prevent patients from enjoying their favorite activities. This is why we are spotlighting fibromyalgia this month, and this is Part One of the September blog series featuring this debilitating disease.
Defining The Mystery: Clues To Managing the Disease
Let’s begin with a deceptively simple definition of this illness: “a chronic disorder characterized by widespread pain, tenderness, and stiffness of muscles and associated connective tissue structures that is typically accompanied by fatigue, headache, and sleep disturbances.” Often misunderstood, and sadly, incorrectly diagnosed, these patients receive new hope due to the therapies we offer at the Center for Natural and Integrative Medicine.
Although Fibromyalgia Awareness day was May 12, many organizations, clubs and individuals also promote our awareness of this disease during the entire month of September. September is dedicated to Chronic Pain Sufferers, and fibromyalgia patients live with chronic pain.
The National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association invites you to care – “C.A.R.E. & Make Fibromyalgia Visible” – With the CARE accronym, they are encouraging you Contribute, Advocate, participate in Research, and Educate others about fibromyalgia. You will find a great deal of useful information about the illness, at their source. Plus, you can take a moment of generosity and email a well designed e-card from their collection .
As we have said on our special page dedicated to this condition, “Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndromes (abbreviated CFIDS or CFS) and Fibromyalgia (FMS) represent a group of symptoms associated with severe fatigue, insomnia, “brain fog,” and, in those with Fibromyalgia, widespread pain.”
Because of its many sources of pains and problems, the doctors and staff who treat fibromyalgia are like detectives who work to find the underlying causes of a patient’s fibromyalgia. As with many diseases we treat at the Center for Natural and Integrative Medicine, Doctors take an integrated approach to fight the pain of this condition.
First, We validate your pain: At The Center for Natural and Integrative Medicine, we know your pain is real. We bring you reassurance that your condition can improve.
Second, We bring our patients power over pain: Here at The Center, Fibromyalgia patients embark on a new journey of knowledge and understanding of their condition, in addition to therapies. At the Center, we “foster a positive sense of ability to cope…and manage symptoms to enhance their daily function and quality of life.”