Debs Connell Psychotherapist & Wellbeing Coach

My interest in helping people diagnosed with fibromyalgia is borne from my own experience, having had it from a young age.

I have learned the importance of managing the condition and maintaining a healthy mindset.  I now control ‘it’, instead of ‘it’ controlling me! I will show you the techniques that have proven to work for me and other fibro sufferers.

What is Fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia, also called fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is a chronic condition of widespread pain and profound fatigue.  It can also cause depressed mood, anxiety, restless legs, difficulty sleeping, trouble thinking clearly (fibro fog), headaches and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) amongst other things.

Most people with fibromyalgia are deprived of deep restorative sleep which is not good for general health and wellbeing and can have a huge impact on daily life.

The pain is described as that of arthritis, but fibromyalgia is not a condition that gets worse and it doesn’t cause damage to muscles or bones.

The exact cause of fibromyalgia is unknown, but the most recent research found there is a link with abnormal levels of certain chemicals in the brain and changes in the way the central nervous system processes pain messages carried around the body.

It’s also suggested that some people are more likely to develop fibromyalgia because of genes inherited from their parents. Fibromyalgia can develop after some sort of trauma but then sometimes there is no obvious trigger.

Although anyone can get fibromyalgia, it affects approximately 7 times as many women as men.  The condition typically develops between the ages of 30 and 50, but can occur in people of any age, including children and the elderly.

Sadly, there are many women who have been misdiagnosed with fibromyalgia according to Dr Louise Newson (GP & Menopause specialist) who has found that their menopause or perimenopause had not been considered as being the underlying cause for their symptoms. Given the typical age of diagnosis this makes perfect sense.

Learning to Manage Symptoms

There is no cure as yet for fibromyalgia but it’s not all doom and gloom.  The most successful way of dealing with this painful and frustrating condition is to learn how to manage it (as with many chronic illnesses and the menopause). The art of relaxation is an important technique to practice, as it instantly reduces tension in the mind and body which calms symptoms of many medical disorders.

Psychotherapy is known to be beneficial for chronic conditions such as fibromyalgia because psychological issues can have an impact on physical symptoms and vice versa.

Stress management and coping skills will certainly help as will learning to be mindful.

Please get in touch if you want to learn techniques to manage your symptoms so you can improve your quality of life! 

Further information can be found on the following websites: