What makes fibromyalgia symptoms worse?

If you suffer from fibromyalgia symptoms, you must be encountering pain and fatigue too often. It is difficult to diagnose this condition, as the pain and symptoms of fibromyalgia appear for a while and then vanish.

Once you are diagnosed with fibromyalgia, you must know how to avoid the triggers. Here are the reasons that you should avoid that make symptoms of fibromyalgia worse:

  1. Weather: Pain due to fibromyalgia gets worse in the cold and windy weather conditions. Changes in barometric pressure also trigger or worsen fibromyalgia pain. Do not panic. These are short term flare ups that will last only for a day or two.
  2. Physical strain: When fibromyalgia pain goes away for a while, you are tempted to get back on your feet and finish your pending chores. This may exert you physically and trigger the flare up or worsen it. So, go easy on the tasks involving physical effort like travelling, manual chores, exercises etc. If you must get back to action, then slowly increase the activity level over time. Do not hurry. This will ensure that flare ups do not happen.
  1. Stress: Stress is a major factor that can induce a fibromyalgia flare up or worsen its symptoms. Stress increases the levels of stress hormones like cortisol and epinephrine in your body. This makes you susceptible to experiencing tiredness, low energy, headaches and pain. Avoid taking stress to keep away from its side effects like anxiety and depression. These are triggering factors for the fibromyalgia symptoms. Stress induced flare ups last for a long time as they come up very gradually. The sad part is they are difficult to recognize and correct.
  1. Hormonal Imbalance: Periods of hormonal ups and downs also aggravate or induce symptoms of fibromyalgia. Hormonal changes are commonly seen during menstrual cycles and menopause.
  2. Changes in sleep pattern: Stick to your sleep routine if you don’t want to trigger fibromyalgia flare up. If you are sleeping for lesser number of hours than usual or experiencing disturbed sleep, then symptoms of fibromyalgia may start or get worse.
  3. Changes in temperature: Patients of fibromyalgia are sensitive to changes in temperature. Exposure to extreme heat or cold, even for some time, may make symptoms of fibromyalgia worse.
  4. Injury or other ailments:  Injuries and ailments like fever, typhoid, and even common cold can worsen the symptoms of fibromyalgia like pain, fatigue, migraine, sweating, stiffness etc.
  5. External factors: Environmental factors like loud noise, bright lights and certain odours like perfumes also trigger and worsen the signs of fibromyalgia. Adverse effects of these factors vary from person to person. It can last for a short duration.
  6. Changes in treatment: Since it is quite difficult to diagnose the cause of fibromyalgia, your doctor may take time for trial and error with the line of treatment. Changing the medicine may also worsen the condition at times, which can be tricky. So, stay aware to track the treatment method and medicines that best suit to you.

Although it may not be possible to avoid the flare ups of fibromyalgia, it sure makes a huge difference when you are aware of the triggers. By being aware of these conditions that worsen the fibromyalgia symptoms, it becomes easier to prevent them or even reduce the intensity of pain significantly.

Important Tip: Keep note of your daily activities like dietary changes, sleep hours, medicines etc. in a journal. This will help you identify and keep track of factors that induce or aggravate fibromyalgia symptoms.

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