Fibromyalgia is a medical disorder characterized by chronic pain that seems to “move” or “travel” all over the body. The debilitating condition interferes with the way pain receptors in the body respond to pressure, and this is what results in widespread pain across the body. Besides pain, those suffering from this condition often experience extreme tiredness, sleeping difficulties and memory issues. Other symptoms can include muscle tiredness, irritable bowel syndrome and headaches.
What causes Fibromyalgia?
The exact cause of this condition is not known. Most medical experts, however, link it to changes in the way pain signals are processed by the nervous system and an increase in certain chemicals within the brain. Fibromyalgia can also be triggered by traumatic events that are either physical or emotional in nature. These may include car accidents, childbirth, the loss of a loved one or even a break-up. Infections, physical injuries and food sensitivities (such as undiagnosed celiac disease) have also been found to either trigger or aggravate the condition. Other conditions such as lupus, osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis can increase the likelihood of developing fibromyalgia.
Who is affected by Fibromyalgia?
Anyone can suffer from the disorder, although women are at a higher risk for the syndrome than men. Fibromyalgia typically develops in adults between the ages of 30 and 50, although it can develop in children and seniors as well. The exact number of people suffering from the disease is unknown in part due to the fact that there is no standard test for fibromyalgia. Additionally, since the symptoms are very similar to those of other conditions, many people could be suffering from fibromyalgia without even knowing it.
Why Fibromyalgia hurts so much
Those who suffer from fibromyalgia experience changes in their brain as a result of the condition. Repeated nerve stimulation as a result of the condition increases the concentration of certain chemicals within the brain that are responsible for pain reception. An increase in these chemicals causes the brain to overreact to pressure and pain signals, therefore, resulting in the sensation of greater pain from the same signals.
Treatment for Fibromyalgia
Since there is no known cure for fibromyalgia, treatment strategies are aimed at dealing with the symptoms. Western medicine physicians often recommend painkillers for the physical discomfort associated with fibromyalgia and anti-depressants for the emotional challenges caused by it. Since these strategies involve the introduction of chemicals into the body, which, in turn, can lead to an increase in the concentration of toxins in the body, there can be harmful risks associated with this approach, especially if used longterm.
The body also has a way of developing resistance to some of these medications as a result of continued use. Those who rely on such medications may find they need higher and higher doses of the drugs to achieve the same effect they had originally. The dependency and increasing need for medication can be very frustrating for individuals who simply want to feel better and healthier again. This dissatisfaction often leads people to explore more natural alternatives.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) offers fibromyalgia sufferers a more holistic approach that not only tackles the symptoms of the condition but also offers natural pain relief that works to improve the individual’s overall health. These natural remedies include herbs, healthy dietary habits, and eastern therapies. Let’s now take a look at some of the TCM-inspired strategies to deal with fibromyalgia.
- Turmeric has been used effectively as an anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving agent for centuries now. This versatile herb adds yellow color and mild flavoring to curry and other Indian dishes. The main ingredient in turmeric is curcumin, which is now well-known as powerful pain reliever. When consumed or applied topically, turmeric releases curcurmin into the body, which travels to sources of pain and reduces inflammation and swelling. With oral consumption, turmeric may need to be taken in large quantities to experience its amazing medicinal effects. It also needs to be combined with black pepper for proper absorption. The digestive tract is slow to digest turmeric and the pain-relieving effects are not felt right away. A faster option for pain relief is to apply turmeric topically. Alcohol-based liniments, like Plum Dragon’s Ho Family Dit Da Jow, are especially optimized for for quick absorption and delivery of the pain-relieving effects of this great Chinese herb.
- Cayenne Pepper is another herb that helps with pain relief. The active component in cayenne pepper is capsicum, which can cause a burning sensation when consumed and applied topically. You might think that the heating action of capsicum would result in more pain, but the opposite is true. Capsicum compounds relieve some of the nerves that transmit pain signals and this blocks the pain. Cayenne pepper should, however, if taken internally, should be taken moderately as the burning sensation can be quite uncomfortable if you take too much of it. When taken regularly and moderately, cayenne pepper can help ease the widespread pain caused by fibromyalgia. This is another very important ingredient in Plum Dragon’s Ho Family Dit Da Jow, so if you or someone you love would like to experience the benefits of capsicum for pain relief without ingesting the pepper itself, this is the perfect solution!
Muscle tiredness and tightness is one of the symptoms of fibromyalgia. The muscles also develop tight knots that are quite painful and uncomfortable. Massage is one of the recommended methods to loosen the knots to bring about pain relief. A specialized technique known as myofascial release is the best way to deal with this condition. It entails the application of slow and sustained pressure on the trigger points within the muscles. This technique breaks up the knots in the muscles, which in turn brings about pain relief and eliminates muscle stiffness in the affected muscles. A study carried out in Europe also found this technique effective in treating fibromyalgia pain for a period of up to 6 months. Plum Dragon offers Flexibili-Tea and Flexibility liniment that can help to relax tight muscles especially when combined with massage or stretching techniques.
Acupuncture works on the belief that pain and other disorders arise as a result of imbalances in the body. By piercing the body at various points, acupuncture stimulates trigger points and restores balance and harmony in the body — this helps alleviate the pain. According to TCM, fibromyalgia pain is caused by excess fluids that build up in the body (dampness) which rise across meridians as heat, causing inflammation and chronic pain. As a result of the disharmony, fluids don’t flow freely in the body, causing stagnation. The stagnation is what caused the heat which manifests itself as pain across the body. Acupuncture helps with fibromyalgia by improving circulation and pain management. Enhanced circulation ensures that there is no stagnation and this greatly reduces inflammation. Acupuncture needles trigger the production of endorphins that help bring about pain relief. Plum Dragon’s Bruise Juice formula has a cooling effect on the body and strongly promotes circulation, so it may provide assistance in relieving pain associated with Fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia is a painful and perplexing disorder. The fact that it seems to have no cure makes finding ways to deal with the symptoms very important. TCM provides some of the most effective techniques to deal with the symptoms, especially the symptoms of pain and tight muscles. Herbal remedies, massage therapies and acupuncture will help to ease some of the pain and not only make life a little bit more bearable, but much more comfortable! Try all three approaches for the best probability of positive results.