Fibromyalgia and Acupuncture: Finding Natural Relief
Chronic pain in multiple areas of the body, accompanied by insomnia and depression is how most patients describe fibromyalgia. Once thought to be a psychosomatic disorder (what’s in your mind is making your body worse) or a psychiatric disorder (it’s all in your mind), fibromyalgia is a recognized illness. As debilitating as it can be, relief can be found, and acupuncture and Chinese medicine can be a drug free, natural solution to find the relief you need.
Sometimes confused with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), fibromyalgia or fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) can leave you in constant pain and fatigue your body and mind. Though pain and fatigue are the most common symptoms reported, fibromyalgia syndrome is associated with a large variety of symptoms which might include:
Widespread painMuscle achesJoint stiffnessFatigueDepressionInsomniaHeadaches (migraines and/or tension)Difficulty concentrating (affectionately referred to as “fibrofog”)Hypersensitive to stressful situationsSensitivity to light and/or noiseTMJ syndromeAnxietyUrinary and/or pelvic problemsIrregular menstrual cycleMyofascial painWeight gainNauseaDizzinessSkin problemsSensitivity to many different chemicalsPoor memoryIBSHeart palpitationsMood swings
Keep in mind that a patient doesn’t need to have all of these symptoms to be diagnosed with FMS and usually patients have a few of these, with pain and fatigue being the primary symptoms. Patients with fibromyalgia have no actual visible damage to tissue, joints, bones or organs, so there isn’t a laboratory test that can confirm the patient has fibromyalgia. Instead, FMS can be diagnosed by pressing on 18 specific points on the body. If there is pain in at least 11 of the 18 points, as well as some of the other symptoms being present, a diagnosis of fibromyalgia can be given.
Acupuncture and Chinese medicine can be a godsend to many patients. In my experience, the combination of acupuncture and fire-cupping is most beneficial for pain relief. Chinese medicine divides fibromyalgia into four possible patterns and therefore each pattern must be treated accordingly. In any of these patterns, tremendous results can be seen with the patient finding immediate relief with usually just one treatment and lasting relief with a series of treatments. Cupping or fire-cupping is also extremely effective in treating the pain associated with fibromyalgia. In most patients, the addition of herbal formulas (put together for their specific symptoms) can be the final touch to relieve all the symptoms and help them to regain their life.
If you or someone you know is suffering from fibromyalgia, please check out all your treatment options and make visiting an acupuncturist a priority. Natural and lasting relief through acupuncture and Chinese medicine is a much better option than a life of pharmaceuticals or living with the pain, fatigue and other symptoms for your whole life.