According to the Mayo Clinic, Fibromyalgia is a disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues. Researchers believe that fibromyalgia amplifies painful sensations by affecting the way your brain processes pain signals. It is usually triggered by physical trauma, psychological trauma, infection, or surgical procedure. Typical treatment of fibromyalgia consists of a variety of medication for symptom control, stress relief, relaxation, and exercise. Women have a higher tendency to be affected by fibromyalgia than men.
While most fibromyalgia treatment consists of symptom control via medication, functional medicine has started to address the root cause of the inflammatory condition by looking at past history of everything from digestive issues to psychological issues that may be contributing to the pain. In the same light, functional chiropractic strives to work concurrently with our medical colleagues to look for the root cause of the biomechanical and neurological cause of the pain. This team approach is producing faster and longer lasting results as it focuses in on down regulating the nervous system interference thereby reducing the overall pain sensation of the body.
One means of doing this is through gentle and specific chiropractic adjusting. This differs from the typical adjustment that is done manually with force to move restricted bones. Gentle adjusting uses a mechanical tool that provides multiple pulses to the spinal or other painful joints affecting a change in the neurological input to the brain. In other words, we find the specific area of interference through proper testing and send signals to the affected area’s nerves, which in turn reduces the sensation of the nerves in the area. Done over time, a new pattern can be established causing a more “permanent” shift of the pain receptors resulting in less pain. All this, while simultaneously stimulating the immune system to allow for more healing.
Another tool used is low level laser therapy (LLLT) to reduce the pain symptoms in the area and promote circulation. LLLT is non invasive, non-thermal (no burning), and painless to the person being treated. The effect of LLLT has been studied over decades and it is fast becoming the treatment of choice for pain control and faster healing. Simply applying laser to the affected area, as well as receptors up and down the nerve path, can promote an analgesic (pain reducing) effect as well as improve microcellular circulation at the deepest levels all without any side effects.
Fibromyalgia can be a debilitating issue for many people and can be an aggravating factor for anyone that has been injured. Functional medicine and chiropractic has helped by getting to the root cause of the fibromyalgia and together has made a difference in the lives of those affected.
by Dr. Vishal Verma, DC, CCSP, Functional Chiroprator