Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition that affects over 5 million Americans, especially women between age 25-60. It is diagnosed from the patient’s history, complaints, and exam. People suffering from fibromyalgia have significant muscle pain but it is often a diagnosis of exclusion since the patient’s x-rays and lab test are usually negative for any pathologies. Although patients with fibromyalgia have constant aches and chronic fatigue, joints and organs are not affected by the disease.
Fibromyalgia symptoms include:
- Chronic trigger points (very tender points on muscles)
- Sleep Problems
- Depression or anxiety
While the medical community used to believe the fibromyalgia patients where either faking or the pain was “in their head,” research now suggests that the disease affects how the body interprets pain. These signals are carried along nerve fibers – the same nerve fibers that are relieved by chiropractic adjustments.
Fibromyalgia can also affect a person’s sleep. It has been found that patients suffering from fibromyalgia do not fall into a deep sleep, rendering them exhausted in the morning. Since the body heals while you are sleeping, the lack of deep sleep creates a vicious downward spiral of fatigue, pain, and depression/anxiety.
While many doctors prescribe pain medication and anti-depressants for fibromyalgia, chiropractic treatments along with light exercise has been found to decrease the symptoms. Chiropractic affects the same nerves that are getting the “wrong signals” from the body. Light exercise releases natural endorphins to decrease pain and depression as well.
Dr. Brandon Nevel treats patients suffering from fibromyalgia in his private chiropractic office in Jupiter, FL. While there is no “cure” for fibromyalgia, Dr. Nevel is able to manage patient’s symptoms so they are able to live relatively pain-free lives.