For those who are newer readers, I want to share my thoughts on the link between Fibromyalgia and trauma from last year:
Are you familiar with Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia (pronounced fy-bro-my-AL-ja) is a common and complex chronic pain disorder that affects people physically, mentally and socially. Fibromyalgia is a syndrome rather than a disease. Unlike a disease, which is a medical condition with a specific cause or causes and recognizable signs and symptoms, a syndrome is a collection of signs, symptoms, and medical problems that tend to occur together but are not related to a specific, identifiable cause. –the National Fibromyalgia Association (NFA)
Although the cause is unknown, possible triggers may include severe physical or emotional trauma. It has certainly been my anecdotal experience that childhood trauma is often a precursor for the development of fibromyalgia (as well as many other physical problems). As I have written about previously, migraines, chronic pain, arthritis, chronic fatigue and irritable bowel syndrome are also prevalent among those who have experienced childhood abuse. Another possible trigger is not getting enough sleep. This is certainly a common issue for those who were abused as children! Sleep disruption is one of the issues clients present with most consistently at the beginning of treatment.
I am in no way the same as saying that fibromyalgia does not exist in its own right or is “all in your head”. Too many women have had their physical complaints minimized when seeking treatment. That is why raising awareness is so important.
Do you suffer with fibromyalgia? What was your experience like getting diagnosed and treated for it? Do others understand it?
Do you see it linked to prior trauma?
Do you have any other chronic medical conditions or symptoms that you see as connected to childhood trauma? Have you addressed these? What has helped? What has not?
I look forward to hearing your thoughts and input!
More information on Coping with Fibromyalgia