Fibromyalgia disability status is linked to severe symptoms, higher medication use, and physically demanding jobs. A study revealed that 30 percent of Canadians who suffer from fibromyalgia – a condition characterized by chronic pain – have a disability status.
The study looked at 248 Canadian patients with fibromyalgia who were split into three groups: 90 were employed, 81 were unemployed for reasons not related to fibromyalgia, and 77 received work disability compensation for fibromyalgia.
The researchers found significant differences among the three groups. For starters, the participants in the disabled group generally were older in age, had more severe symptoms, used more medication, and were more likely to have been working in physically demanding jobs. Smoking was seen to be more common in this group as well.
Antidepressants were taken by patients in all three groups. Patient Global Assessment (PtGA), the Pain Disability Index, the McGill Pain Questionnaire, and Health Assessment Questionnaire scores were all higher in the disabled group.
Living with fibromyalgia pain
Fibromyalgia pain can make everyday living quite challenging as it can be so severe that you don’t even want to get out of bed at all. Not only are you in pain, but you’re also chronically fatigued as well, so you don’t even have the energy for your daily activities when the pain subsides.
Although living with fibromyalgia pain can be difficult, it’s not impossible. Here are a few things to keep in mind…
Always put yourself first: President of the National Fibromyalgia Association Lynne Matallana said, “People with fibromyalgia are often so used to doing things for others — whether it’s for family, friends, or work — that we end up doing a disservice to ourselves by taking on too much. I’ve found it’s really important to learn how to take care of yourself and focus on your own needs.” Depending on how you feel, that might sometimes mean lying in bed all day reading a book or going to a movie with friends. “It’s important to understand that taking care of yourself will ultimately help you heal,” she said.
Set limits: Over-pushing yourself can just wear you thin even further, so setting limits can still allow you to achieve things whilst not overdoing it. Tips to set limits are: keep your options open, know it’s okay to cancel, keep a fibromyalgia journal to track symptoms and possible triggers, delegate and ask others for help when needed, take a break when needed, eat out or order in as opposed to making large meals for get-togethers, and lastly, plan activities during hours you feel your best.
By listening to your body, you can best judge how your day will go and what you can and cannot do. Don’t try to keep up with others and pay attention to what feels right – you’ll get much more done that way.
Fibromyalgia symptoms can vary greatly and overlap with many other health conditions which can make it much more difficult to diagnose fibromyalgia – especially because the underlying mechanisms still aren’t fully understood. Unfortunately, there isn’t a specific test for fibromyalgia, and that is why it’s so important to fully understand the symptoms in order to distinguish a fibromyalgia diagnosis from other ailments. Continue reading…
Fibromyalgia pain relief using vibration exercise shows promise and regular exercise for fibromyalgia patients is considered safe. The findings come from researchers at Indiana University who conducted a pilot study. They found that whole-body vibration exercise may reduce pain experienced in fibromyalgia, and this in turn can go on to improve the patients’ quality of life, which is severely hindered by the fibromyalgia pain. Continue reading…