"Sensory processing retraining such as inhibition of specific primitive reflexes can be effective in reducing sensory hyper-sensitivity and restoring a sense of control."
What is Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain condition characterised by widespread body pains, sensitivity to touch, tight and sore muscles, a tendency to experience amplified pain after a massage, brain fog (poor concentration and memory etc.), poor sleep, gut irritability, sensitivity to light touch, and fatigue. Fibromyalgia is a disorder of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) sensory processing functions, and not of the muscles themselves. Often there has been significant trauma(s) in the past, in the life of someone experiencing fibromyalgia, or a history of significant stress and anxiety.
How is it diagnosed?
Fibromyalgia is diagnosed by clinical tests including questionnaires, and confirmed by blood tests to rule out active inflammatory disorders, such as autoimmune diseases. The official guidelines for diagnosing fibromyalgia are published by the American College of Rheumatology, and can be used by GPs, rheumatologists and pain physiotherapists.
What can be done to help?
Identification of sensory sensitivity characteristics, coping styles and lifestyle stressors can be very important in fibromyalgia.
Sleep management, lifestyle aspects such as dietary alterations, exercise management, stress management and a clear understanding of the nature of the pain and its triggers may all be combined for the best results.
Sensory processing retraining such as inhibition of specific primitive reflexes can be effective in reducing sensory hyper-sensitivity and restoring a sense of control.
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