Understanding & Treating Fibromyalgia Tender Points
Fibromyalgia tender points can be described as painful occurrences of tenderness or soreness at widespread and various points around the body or joints that may be accompanied by feelings of anxiety and depression. Fibromyalgia is most often experienced by women between the ages of 20 and 50. Although the pain occurs at various places around the body, the pain from tender points can be often felt simply by pressing on the areas nearby joints. The joints themselves are not affected and are not thought to be a cause of the pain.
People experiencing Fibromyalgia tender points will often feel a painful soreness just under the skin. These pain may be experienced in small spots at various points all over the body including: the neck, back, hips, knees, elbows, chest and even the buttocks. Although the tender points may feel inflamed, they actually are not, and the underlying causes of the pain are still unknown. Other symptoms commonly shared by Fibromyalgia patients include: depression, trouble sleeping, fatigue, deep muscle pain, and irritable bowel syndrome. It is important that you inform your doctor of all of the symptoms in order for him to give you a proper diagnosis and prescribe the proper treatments.
Diagnosis of Tender Points
Once your doctor understands that you are displaying most or all of the symptoms of Fibromyalgia, he will examine 18 tender point sites around your body. If 11 or more of the points examined are sources of pain for the patient and the pain has been widespread for 3 months or more, your doctor may diagnose you with Fibromyalgia. The tender points of Fibromyalgia are predictable and seem to occur in the same places across all patients. This knowledge will help your physician in administering a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.
Medicines and Treatment
Fibromyalgia may be best treated with a combination of medicines and therapeutic treatments. Since one common symptom of Fibromyalgia tender points is depression, the pain and fatigue associated with this illness may sometimes be treated with low doses of antidepressants. However, in most cases, your Fibromyallgia will be treated with a combination of medicines, exercise, hot and cold hydrotherapy, and will include a focus on stress management and proper rest periods for the patient.
While at home, Fibromyalgia tender point sufferers may be able to conduct forms of self treatment that include but are not limited to making sure that they receive regular and proper rest periods, avoiding stressful activities, participating in deep relaxation exercises. Patients may also attempt to relax affected areas with tissue or muscle massage and by applying moist heat. These home treatments are all designed to relieve stress, anxiety and stiffness, which are all common symptoms suffered by Fibromyalgia patients.
Understanding Fibromyalgia tender points and recognizing all of the symptoms is the first step to the proper diagnosis and treatment of this illness. Avoiding stress and having regular and full rest periods seem to be strong medicine to combat a painful condition. If you are experiencing the widespread pain of Fibromyalgia along with other symptoms of anxiety or depression, consult you physician for a professional diagnosis and treatment.