Fibromyalgia is a common neurologic health problem affecting an estimated 200 to 400 million people worldwide. People with Fibromyalgia have pain and tenderness come and go and move around in the body. It causes fatigue and sleeps problems. People with other conditions like arthritis and lupus are at a higher risk of developing fibromyalgia.
The condition causes pains all over the body. It affects the way pain signals are processed and can cause other mental and physical stresses. Symptoms often experienced in conjunction are depression, anxiety, headaches, IBD, pelvic pain, and even temporomandibular disorder in some cases.
Fibromyalgia is a difficult condition to diagnose because of its subjective symptom of perceived pain and the broad spectrum of severity in individual cases. While fibromyalgia typically onsets between the ages of 20-55, it can also manifest in the teenage years. There is no cure for the condition, and it causes widespread chronic pain for the entire life of those afflicted.
The root of this unfortunate condition is still widely debated and unclear. It was once thought to be a type of autoimmune disease similar to arthritis, but current research suggests an involvement of the central nervous system, or the brain and spinal cord. Essentially, scientists think that the body’s pain perception system is malfunctioning, rather than the immune system, recently compelling them to describe fibromyalgia instead as Central Pain Amplification Disorder.
What triggers the onset of fibromyalgia is also difficult to identify. Experts suggest a variety of environmental and genetic factors all combine to define one's risk of developing the condition. Spine problems, arthritis, and certain injuries may trigger the condition. Also, emotional and mental health may play key factors in fibromyalgia risk.
Research shows that the most beneficial therapy found thus far for fibromyalgia patients is actually physical exercise. Body movement practices such as Tai Chi and yoga have shown to relieve pain from fibromyalgia. Mindfulness and meditation have also shown to significantly improve symptoms of the condition, and also functions of immunity and cognition. Acupuncture, chiropractic, and massage therapy also have therapeutic benefits for chronic pain sufferers.
Interestingly, the normal regimen of [opioids] and over-the-counter pain relievers don’t seem to provide relief from the chronic widespread pain of fibromyalgia. While most physicians aren’t prescribing strong opioids for fibromyalgia pain, they are prescribing [SSRI] and [SNRI] antidepressants.
Even in low doses antidepressants can induce dizziness, nausea, fatigue, hypertension, inflammation, cognitive impairment, and even suicidal thoughts. The thing is that these drugs become inefficient and tolerated in a short amount of time, leading to needing higher doses to manage chronic pain. Post-marketing clinical trials have reported sexual dysfunction rates as high as 75% in those who take antidepressants. Another big risk with antidepressants and many other drugs is that if combined with the wrong medications they can be deadly. Studies even suggest that discontinuation of SSRIs causes withdrawal symptoms.
Multiple scientific studies have proven the potential of medical marijuana. [Phytocannabinoids] derived from cannabis bind with endogenous [receptors] within our bodies helping to regulate various systems of homeostatic health and wellness. In a systematic overview of the effectiveness of [cannabinoids] in the management of chronic pain, researchers found that cannabinoids were able to reduce the pain of patients who couldn’t get relief from traditional [analgesics].
This study supports anecdotal reports from FM and arthritis patients who find relief with medical marijuana. The National Pain Foundation and National Pain Report conducted a survey of over 1,300 fibromyalgia patients. They found that 60% of patients said that the FDA approved drugs didn’t help their pain at all. Only a third of the surveyed patients had tried medical marijuana, but in that group, more than 60% reported cannabis to be very effective in treating their FM symptoms. Interestingly, the survey also found that nearly half of patients felt that their physician isn’t knowledgeable about their disorder, and a third felt their physician doesn’t take the condition seriously.
Medical marijuana can help save lives of children with debilitating diseases, improve the quality of life for millions with chronic physical and mental conditions, and help reduce the need and dependency of dangerous opioids and prescription medications. Healthcare professionals and scientists around the world are gathering in consensus on the need to further research on cannabis-derived medicines. Consult with a physician and medical marijuana professional about using cannabis and consider the following strains linked below that have been reported to relieve symptoms associated with fibromyalgia.
· [[Afghan Bull Rider]]
· [[Afghan Diesel]]
· [[Afghan Haze]]
· [[Afghani Bullrider]]
· [[Alien Candy]]
· [[Alien Kush]]
· [[Alien Rock Candy]]
· [[Alokai Hawaiian]]
· [[American Kush]]
· [[Atomic Goat]]
· [[Aurora Indica]]
· [[AutoNight Queen]]
· [[Banana Candy]]
· [[BC Sweet Tooth]]
· [[Berry OG]]
Boychuk, Darrel G. (2015) ResearchGate. The Effectiveness of Cannabinoids in the Management of Chronic Nonmalignant Neuropathic Pain: A Systematic Review