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Is There Any Cure for Fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia is not only hard to live with because of the whole-body pain it inflicts, but the mental and emotional exhaustion that comes with it as well. Because there’s no known cause and no definitive diagnostic test for fibromyalgia (FMS), it can often be misdiagnosed and undiagnosed, which means you spend time and money seeking elusive answers and relief.

Your search stops here at Arlington Pain & Therapy. Our team of pain management experts are very familiar with all aspects of FMS, so you can rest assured we believe you, and we can treat you. 

We know you have one burning question on your mind, though — is fibromyalgia curable?

The short answer is no. But the long answer is pretty promising. Here’s some information and some hope to help you manage your fibromyalgia symptoms.

Your fibromyalgia may go away

One of fibromyalgia’s signature characteristics is the ebb and flow of symptoms, such as stiffness, fatigue, sleeplessness, irritable bowel syndrome, and concentration and memory problems known as “fibro fog.”  Sometimes the pain and other symptoms are intense (called a flare-up), and other times they seem mild or or nonexistent. But does FMS ever really go away?

Recent research suggests that it may. If you’ve been suffering from FMS for two years or less and have relatively mild symptoms, you stand a good chance (up to 80%) of remission, meaning your symptoms will disappear. But the longer you live with it, the lower your chances of remission. 

Another study found that a year or two after receiving a fibromyalgia diagnosis, 20-47% of sufferers, when tested and evaluated again, no longer met the criteria for the condition, which include:

While scientists don’t yet know what leads to remission, they do know there are some things you can do to improve your chances. 

Know your triggers

Most fibromyalgia sufferers report that certain things trigger their flare-ups or make them worse. No two people are the same, and you may have different triggers than your fellow fibromyalgia peers. Here are a few to consider:

Sleep deprivation

Lack of sleep tends to be a common denominator, so making sure you’re well rested can help. If your fibromyalgia is causing your insomnia, and your insomnia is exacerbating your fibromyalgia, we can help you get the rest you need. 

Certain foods

Diet plays a role in everyone’s health, but if you have FMS, certain foods can help and others can be harmful. Experiment with eliminating things you suspect may be triggers (such as fried and processed foods, caffeine, even egg yolks) and try adding items that are high in antioxidants and Omega-3 fatty acids. 

Foods that naturally fight inflammation, like ginger and turmeric, may help as well.

Sedentary lifestyle

When you’re in pain, the last thing you want to do is lift weights or play tennis, because overexerting yourself can cause a flare-up. And it’s good to heed your body’s warning. But that doesn’t mean you should sit on the couch all day.

Exercise is just as important for you as it is for those without fibromyalgia, it just looks different. Try gentle activities like yoga, Thai chi, water aerobics, and pilates to keep your heart and muscles active without too much strain and pain.

Wrap your mind around your fibromyalgia

Mind over matter is a powerful tool. Many people use meditation to de-stress and calm their symptoms. Support groups and psychotherapy may also help you mentally overcome them.

Osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT)

One of the ways we help our patients find relief from FMS pain is through OMT. This hands-on technique feels much like a massage but has very specific goals. Our specialists manipulate your muscles and tissues to realign and balance them, which not only reduces pain and inflammation, but also promotes healing.

Medication

Depending on the severity of your flare-up, over-the-counter pain relievers may give you the help you need. But if they don’t work for you, there are some very effective prescription medications that can help you live more comfortably with fibromyalgia, including antidepressants and a drug called gabapentin. 

If you have fibromyalgia, all you want is relief — if not a cure, then remission. To learn more about how to live with your FMS, call us at either of our two Mansfield locations or our Arlington office today, or send us a message online.

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