We all experience minor body aches and pains occasionally, but when pain and fatigue become chronic, it’s time to seek medical help. A person who suffers from chronic pain, stiffness and aching may be suffering from fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia Syndrome is a diagnosis based on chronic, diffuse musculoskeletal pain with associated widespread, discrete tender points. It is a common type of rheumatic disease that affects women seven to ten times more than men, with women more at risk between the ages of 20 and 50. There is no cure for FM and this chronic pain syndrome can be detrimental to a person’s daily routine if it goes unchecked. Common symptoms can include pain, constant fatigue, morning stiffness, sleep disruption, chronic headaches, mental fog, irritability, forgetfulness, stress and muscle tension, cold extremities, depression, irritable bowel, PMS, blurred vision, frequent urination, balance problems, and being unable to carry on with their daily lives. The two most outstanding symptoms are pain and fatigue. The root of the pain is in the muscles themselves and the points where the muscles attach to the bones. Extreme tenderness is often associated at these locations, called “tender points.”
Myofascial Pain Syndrome (MPS) can result from fibromyalgia, causing muscles to weaken and inflame without provocation. It is often very specific in location and is characterized by trigger points with distinctive referral pain patterns, often not seen with fibromyalgia. MPS is a chronic condition that is mostly a response to chronic overuse or repetitive strain. If repetitive irritation isn’t halted or if affected areas don’t heal properly, MPS will persist.
While medications mainly focus on pain reduction, physical therapy is aimed at disease consequences such as pain, fatigue, de-conditioning, muscle weakness and sleep disturbances. Physical Therapy is an essential component of the treatment of any patient with FM. Physical therapists can provide pain relief with modalities, manual therapies including myofascial and craniosacral therapy, and exercise prescriptions. Therapists can also teach relaxation techniques, pacing and self-treatment to help control some of their symptoms throughout the day.
At Concorde Therapy Group, our therapists are highly trained to treat chronic pain, whether it’s fibromyalgia or Myofascial Pain Syndrome. Research has shown that physical therapy is an essential component of the treatment of any patient with fibromyalgia. Aerobic exercise and strength training activities have been associated with a significant reduction in pain, decreased tender points and improved sleep patterns. One of the most important things that the therapists at Concorde can do is teach you to treat yourself. This may involve relaxation or deep breathing techniques, learning to pace activities, and learning appropriate exercise progressions that avoid symptom flare-ups. Myofascial release therapy is often used as the treatment of choice to promote pain relief, restore function, relaxation, and help in obtaining optimum health. As with any type of therapy at Concorde, each treatment approach is individualized depending on the patient’s specific needs and goals. We always work in conjunction with your physician to coordinate our care and improve your outcome.
Start taking control of your life and learn to manage your symptoms with help from the professionals at Concorde Therapy Group. We can help you change your lifestyle if you just take the first step and ask your doctor to refer you to Concorde. We’ll answer all your questions, verify your insurance coverage, and schedule you for your first visit at your convenience.