Possible Risk Factors, Causes, And Triggers Of Fibromyalgia
It is estimated that seven to ten million Americans, most of which are of the female gender, suffer from fibromyalgia. Because of the multiple symptoms related to fibromyalgia it is otherwise referred to as fibromyalgia syndrome; also called FMS for short. The most distinguishable warning sign of fibromyalgia is pain and usually a whole lot of it. Even though the pain generally affects the whole body, it may start in just one single region, such as the neck and shoulders, then move on and spread to other zones over a period of time.
Fibromyalgia is classified as a form of generalized muscular pain and fatigue. Fibromyalgia is in reality a neurological condition that is produced by steadily increasing levels of inflammation in the body. Inflammation causes the muscles to ache and burn, at times it will also cause muscles to spasm and develop the trademark trigger points otherwise known as tender points that are ordinarily connected with the diagnosis of fibromyalgia. It is this very inflammation that ultimately begins the destruction process of the other areas in the breakdown of the body, such as the brain and nervous system, the digestive tract, and the endocrine system. When these other systems of the body start malfunctioning as a result of the inflammation, we start to see some of the other classic signs and symptoms of this illness; such as fatigue, concentration issues or “Fibro Fog” as it is often called, headaches, cold hands and feet, insomnia, digestive problems or IBS, decreased energy or lethargy, along with other issues that can arise due to this condition.
Possible risk factors, causes, or triggers
Scientists still do not know the actual cause of fibromyalgia. Therefore the definite scientific origin of fibromyalgia is currently not known, however, there are many theories as to what risk factors may or may not cause it. Individuals with some rheumatic illnesses, such as rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus which is classically called lupus, as well as ankylosing spondylitis which is better known as spinal arthritis, might be more at risk to be susceptible to fibromyalgia as well. Abnormal production of pain-related chemicals in the brain and nerves is also believed to contribute to the symptoms of fibromyalgia as well. It is thought that any one of these single factors can bring on the symptoms of fibromyalgia in someone who is already subjected to fibromyalgia or genetically predisposed to this condition. Fibromyalgia is also believed to run in families, so a popular theory is that a gene may be at least partly responsible for the condition.
There are numerous theories about possible causes, risk factor, or triggers of fibromyalgia; below is a list of a few more:
- Insufficient sleep patterns are a highly possible trigger.
- Another is suffering an injury such as severe physical or emotional trauma.
- Some experts believe that a viral or bacterial infection may possibly play a part.
- Stress can be an important contributing factor in the progress of fibromyalgia as well.
- At times, fibromyalgia can seem to occur spontaneously with contributing factors.
- Many link fibromyalgia with a physically or emotionally stressful or traumatic event, like a car accident.
- Several also link it to repeated injuries; which can be as in such cases like abuse.
- Neck trauma has also been reported to increase the risk of developing fibromyalgia.
- Another hypothesis is abnormal serotonin metabolism also played a role.
- Dopamine dysfunction is another suggested cause for fibromyalgia.
- One theory suggests that fibromyalgia sufferers have a lower threshold for pain because of increased sensitivity in the brain to pain signals.
- Another theory that has been recommended is an abnormal immune response to intestinal bacteria.
Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition however, by working with your health care providers you can get relief of fibromyalgia symptoms and get back your quality of life. Over the years, fibromyalgia has come quite a long way in attaining acceptance in the medical community. Now that the health care community better understands the mechanisms of this syndrome they do have many treatments as well as alternative methods that have been known to help sufferers decrease and cope with their pain. There are many treatments from medications to therapy to alternative as well as natural methods to treat the everyday pain of fibromyalgia. Unfortunately, what there is yet to be found is a cure.