Bridge to Health Blog
Bridge to Health Blog

Why, for fibromyalgia patients, understanding the obstacle is key

Written by   Posted in:Massage   May 22, 2019

Why, for fibromyalgia patients, understanding the obstacle is key
Fibromyalgia causes pain throughout the body.  Tenderness occurs in joints, muscles, tendons and other soft tissues. Whilst there is no cure for this painful syndrome, pain can be managed effectively with massage. For Fibromyalgia patients, understanding the obstacle is key.

Fibromyalgia is a chronic syndrome, characterised by a mind-blowing list of symptoms. The diagnosis can be slow which in turn leads to frustration in the patient. The list of symptoms is extensive and includes generalised pain, joint rigidity, intense fatigue, sleep disturbance, headaches, anxiety and depression.  It is believed that the over-sensitisation of the sympathetic nervous system produces the wide range of symptoms, but it is still unclear just what the cause of this may be. 

The first step to coping with Fibromyalgia, or any other similar Chronic Disease, is acceptance and learning how to minimise the pain; finding good in day to day life despite living a painful life.  The key is to not be hard on yourself, and focus on achieving what you can.  The “boom or bust” theory simply pushes you to the limit and then you’re not able able to function for hours or days after completing a task.  It is not easy to handle this change if you are used to living life at a million miles an hour.  Having to suddenly stop, and live a debilitating life, affects the whole identity of who you are. 
To date, no cure has been realised for this debilitating condition. But the pain can be managed and massage is one way to practice pain management – try to incorporate it in to everyday life. 
It is commonly accepted, and scientifically proven, that a healthy diet can have a positive affect on overall health.  In fact, a poor diet can increase the symptoms of Fibromyalgia.  Foods that are high in carbohydrates, refined sugars, containing aspartame or MSG have been known to cause flare-ups. 

By changing one’s own lifestyle Fibromyalgia and Chronic Diseases can be manageable.  There are many benefits of massage, especially for Fibromyalgia patients and/or people with Chronic Diseases such as MS, Parkinson’s and Crohns Disease. 

Using massage therapy to aid in the treatment of Fibromyalgia can alleviate pain, increase sleep/help relaxation to improve sleep, improve mental clarity and relax and stimulate weak muscles.
It has been shown that massage can improve the quality of the patient’s life by:
  • Reducing pain, inflammation and restriction.
  • Improving the patient’s mobility.
  • Reducing debilitating fatigue aiding in reducing stress and tension
  • Assisting with balance and coordination.
  • A relaxing massage session can raise healthy awareness and relieve mental stress.  This can aid the patient’s cognitive problems.

By improving the blood flow to the brain this can relieve the physical source of headaches, aiding the patient to have a healthier head space aiding with anxious or depressive thoughts.
By diminishing the effects of anxiety and/or depression these including hormonal fluctuations, interference with appetite, chronic fight-or-flight mode, massage can restore homeostasis of the body. 

At Bridge to Health we provide a relaxing atmosphere and treat each patient as an individual. We work with you to reduce your symptoms and ultimately try to enhance your day to day life.  Whilst massage is not close to being a cure, it really does go a long way to helping you put one foot in front of the other to help you try and lead a life that you want.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the team. 
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