Chronic pain is just one of the many symptoms present in fibromyalgia at almost all times, but for me, it is the most predominant. Pain affects all aspects of my life. Expensive payment for every physical activity I do; Even the smallest task can lead to a great increase in my symptoms.
Fibromyalgia pain is unique due to its severity, complexity, and multiple systems involved. There are three main types of pain in fibromyalgia: hyperalgesia, allodynia and paraesthesia.
Hyperalgesia literally translates as excessive pain: “hyper” means excess and “algesia” means pain. It is the medical term for the intensification of pain in fibromyalgia.
Allodynia is the pain you feel when you touch or rub the skin. For example, a slight pressure of the clothes, or a gentle massage causes pain, or also a light breeze that blows on the skin. It is hypersensitivity to stimuli that normally would not cause any pain.Paresthesia is a strange nervous sensation, which feels like something that creeps, tingles, burns, itches or numbs, for example, a numb spot in the middle of the foot, or a burning sensation in the back.But to be honest, these words mean very little to anyone who doesn’t have fibromyalgia. So, to give people who don’t have it, an idea of what it feels like to live with this painful and debilitating disease, I will describe the pain I experience, in a way that I hope everyone can understand.
1. Burning in the skinSometimes my skin feels like it is on fire, it feels alive. Imagine spending hours in the sun without sun protection, and then you take a dip in the sea and salt water burns your damaged skin. Then you dress to go out at night and your clothes rub against your skin in living flesh. When you have fibromyalgia, clothing alone can cause this pain, sunlight is not required.
2. Stinging / burning painThis is a pain that I find particularly difficult to bear. It is so severe that it leaves me breathless. The pain comes in waves and is accompanied by nausea.
3. Joint painMy joint pain is a dull throbbing pain. It mainly affects my knees, but it can also affect other areas.
4. Muscle painMy muscles hurt constantly. Even the slightest activity makes them throb and burn. I find it impossible to feel comfortable when my muscles ache, it makes me so restless.
5. Muscle spasms I experience muscle spasms every day, they are almost constantly. It is as if you did not have control of your body, as if some unforeseen force was manipulating you.
6. Stinging painsYou feel that someone is using you like a voodoo doll.
7. Between an itching and a throbbing painI am sure there is a technical term for this, but “a cross between an itch and a stab” is the best way to describe it. It happens deep in my muscles and it is impossible to scratch the itch. It also causes shaking in the affected part of my body.
8. Bruise sensationNot only on the skin but also inside, which feels bruised, and sensitive. My chest and rib cage feel bruised most of the time, which can make breathing painful (costochondral pain).
9. Feeling of discomfort throughout the bodyWhen I am hypersensitive I feel that I have a discomfort in the whole body. The slightest touch or movement sends throbbing pain around my body.
10. RigidityImagine that a healthy person goes to the gym after months of inactivity. He lifts weights, and has a full body workout. The next day they feel stiff, and fight to move. A person with fibromyalgia wakes up every morning feeling like this. It seems that he was wearing a suit under the skin two sizes smaller.
11. Irradiated painI experience pain that has a central point, but radiates from that point. The pain may start in my back, but it also travels through my legs, for example.
12. Pain caused by touchEven the slightest touch of a loved one can cause pain. I have to wear clothes of two sizes larger, made of soft material without seams. I wear soft, flat shoes of a larger size, and I have to cut my hair because it causes a lot of pain in my skin. Touch causes many of the types of pain that I have described.
13. Migraines / headachesI don’t think a day goes by without a headache, it may be due to stress. My migraines are aggravated by stress and hormones. When they hit I become incapacitated. I lose my vision and the pain is so severe … The slightest movement, touch or noise sends throbbing pain around my head and face.
14. Skin tingling It feels like I have thousands of insects running around my skin. It is actually quite creepy.
15. HypersensitivitySome days, the noise is unbearable. In an instant, I experience pain, nausea, dizziness, trembling and an impending panic attack. But it’s not just noise, I’m also hypersensitive to smells, light and touch. Yes, a smell of strong perfume can cause me pain.
16. Irritable Bowel SyndromeFibromyalgia is often accompanied by other conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Contrary to what people may think, IBS pain not only occurs in the intestines, but radiates to other areas of the body, especially the back. It is a sharp and burning pain. Gases trapped in an already inflamed intestine, are one of the most painful symptoms of IBS, is overwhelming.
Pain is not the only symptom of fibromyalgia, but it is the symptom that has the greatest negative impact on my life and my health.
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