Fibromyalgia – Can It Be Prevented? | Chiropractor Mechanicsville VA

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Fibromyalgia –
Can It Be Prevented?

In order to answer the question, “Can fibromyalgia be prevented?”, we must first find the cause of FM. There are two types of FM:  PRIMARY and SECONDARY.  Primary FM occurs for no known reason, while secondary FM can be triggered by a physical event such as a trauma (e.g., car accident), an emotional event or a stressful situation (e.g., loss of a child), and/or a medical event such as a condition like irritable bowel syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, or systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).  Any condition that carries chronic or long-lasting symptoms can trigger FM, and some argue that the lack of being able to get into the deep sleep stage may be at the core of triggering FM since sleep disorders are a common finding in FM sufferers!

Exercise and Sleep

fibromyalgia exercise walking fibromyalgia chiropractor mechanicsville chiropractic back pain neck painThe “KEY” to managing FM has consistently been and probably always will be exercise and sleep.  So, if FM is preventable, daily exercise and getting the “right kind” of sleep are very important ways that may reduce the likelihood for developing the condition!  Since emotions play a KEY ROLE in the cause and/or effect of FM, applying skills that keep life’s stressors in check is also important.  This list can include hobbies like reading a good book, playing and/or listening to music, or meditation.  The combination of exercise with mindful meditation using approaches like Tai Chi, Yoga, Qi Gong, and others has had positive impacts on FM patients such as improved balance and stability, reduced pain, enhanced mental clarity, and generally improved quality of life.  Managing physical conditions that are associated with FM (such as irritable bowel syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, or systemic lupus erythematosus) is also important in managing and/or preventing FM.


fibromyalgia diet fibromyalgia chiropractor mechanicsville chiropractic back pain neck painAnother management strategy of FM is diet.  As most patients with FM will agree, certain foods help and others make the FM symptoms worse.  In a survey published in the Journal of Clinical
Rheumatology, 42% of FM patients reported certain foods exacerbated their symptoms.  Of course, each individual case is unique, so keeping a food log or journal can be very helpful to determine dietary “friends” vs. “enemies”.  The first step is to eliminate certain foods for four to six weeks, such as dairy and/or gluten.  Most patients report a significant improvement in energy (less fatigue) while some report less pain when problem foods are eliminated from their diet.  Generally, a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins can have a positive impact on the FM patient.  Consider eating multiple small meals vs. two or three large meals during the day, as this can keep blood sugar levels more stable and reduce fatigue.

So, back to the question, can fibromyalgia be prevented?  Maybe. . .maybe not.  Since the medical community doesn’t know the exact cause, it’s hard to answer this question.  However, being proactive and implementing the strategies used to better manage FM may help in preventing it as well!

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Related Articles:

Fibromyalgia Symptoms Are “In Your Head”?:   One study including 168 FM patients associated fibromyalgia with a disturbance in the central nervous system (CNS).  The researcher performed various tests, including . . .

What’s The Best Fibromyalgia “Diet”?:  Perhaps the BEST way to manage the pain associated with FM and to maintain a healthy BMI (Body Mass Index, or ratio between height and weight) is to substitute ANTI-INFLAMING foods for those that inflame. . .

Top 12 Fibromyalgia Sleep Tips:  Fibromyalgia sufferers often have sleep disturbance. These 12 tips can help improve sleep quality with the goal of feeling restored upon waking in the morning. . .

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Dr. Dana Williamson is a chiropractor who has been helping relieve back pain and neck pain of the residents of Mechanicsville, Richmond, Hanover, Henrico, and Glen Allen since 2001.

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Have you added Trigger Point Therapy to your Fibromyalgia treatment regimen?  Integrative Regional Medical Center now performs natural, painless and steroid-free trigger point injection therapy in our office.  Combined with chiropractic care and exercise therapy, this approach is very effective in removing scar tissue and restoring normal muscle function.
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    This information should not be substituted for medical or chiropractic advice. Any and all health care concerns, decisions, and actions must be done through the advice and counsel of a health care professional who is familiar with your updated medical history.
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