(F M .A. N I) is a registered charity organisation dedicated to providing help and support to Fibromyalgia sufferers and those who care for them.
Our mission is to provide an organisation where those with Fibromyalgia can find understanding, knowledge, support and practical help in coping with this disease.
FM.A.NI receives NO council or government funding for our charity & depend on donations to raise the funds it needs to continue, we hope you will find this site useful and informative.
FM.A.NI was set up to raise awareness of Fibromyalgia especially in Northern Ireland.
Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain illness that can affect a person from head to toe.
There is no cure, and it includes a wide range of symptoms that affects everyone differently.
Chronic means this illness is for life. Yes there are good days, but for a person living with Fibromyalgia even a good day equals pain. They require living hour by hour, and not knowing what the day ahead will bring, or when the next flare up could happen.
We really want people to help us spread awareness of this debilitating illness, so that the people who are affected with Fibro can live in a more supportive world.
It is hard enough living with chronic pain and all the other nasty symptoms
without being judged because there illness is invisible.
We want to give those affected by (FMS) Fibromyalgia Syndrome a voice.
We want to make Fibromyalgia VISIBLE!
Fibromyalgia is an epidemic happening across our modern-day culture. It’s more common in women, but can happen in men as well. It’s a condition that involves long term widespread musculoskeletal pain that is often accompanied by fatigue, problems with sleep, as well as mood and memory problems. Symptoms usually start after major trauma or infection, surgery, or extreme psychological distress. Unfortunately, there is no cure for fibromyalgia, but there are ways to treat symptoms and reduce its affect on one’s life, mood and memory. Fibro Fog is the term used to describe the negative effects on cognition fibromyalgia creates. Symptoms of this cognitive dysfunction in fibromyalgia patients range from inability to concentrate to having a hard time finding words to having a decline in memory. Studies have shown that more than half of the patients with fibromyalgia suffer from this fibro fog and that these cognitive changes are similar to 20 years worth of aging.
Losing your memory, realizing you can’t express the words you can clearly see in your mind, or just feeling like you’re unable to focus at all can be frightening and disconcerting, but keeping a positive outlook will go a long way. There are ways of reversing and treating the effects of fibro fog, but you must completely understand what it is and why it’s happening first.
Main Symptoms of Fibro Fog
Difficulty finding words or verbalizing thoughts
Inability or difficulty performing mental tasks
Difficulty with concentration and focus.
Fibromyalgia Symptoms that Affect Cognition
There are three main symptoms of fibromyalgia that researchers believe play a big part in cognitive decline and dysfunction in patients. If these symptoms can be treated first and foremost, the patient will find their cognition significantly improved.
Pain: The pain for fibromyalgia is extreme and can be consuming. Most patients spend much of their time trying to battle the chronic pain associated with fibromyalgia. Physicians and researchers believe that because of the mental effort it takes to deal with the pain, the brain power is diverted from other parts of the mind that are used for focus, concentration, and memory.
Fatigue and Difficulties Sleeping: Going too long with loss of sleep can cause major health issues up to and including hallucinations and even death. The brain is unable to retain information and create memories when you’re overtired and fatigued. It’s impossible to concentrate when you’re exhausted. Unfortunately, many fibromyalgia patients suffer from sleep disturbance because of discomfort and pain. Anxiety and Depression: These are common psychological disorders that accompany fibromyalgia. It is likely because being in pain is absolutely miserable and not having a cure for fibromyalgia makes it very difficult to cope with the diagnosis. Nervousness, anxiety, and depression negatively affect the chemistry in the brain, which in turn hurts thought processes and cognition.
Assessment of Cognition in Fibromyalgia Patients
If you find yourself having any of the above symptoms of fibro fog, then it is imperative you have your mental function tested by a professional. They will look at memory (episodic and semantic), and tests that look at your focus and concentration levels. This is recommended for all patients who have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, but should be tested regularly after initial diagnosis. Cognitive symptoms sometimes take years to develop, and sometimes they can occur much more rapidly. It depends on several factors such as genetics, environment, and even your diet and exercise routine. Paying attention to your memory and cognitive abilities will be vitally important at the onset of the fibromyalgia diagnosis. This will help you better understand the condition and take steps to treat it and even prevent it.
How to Treat Fibro Fog
There are some natural things you can do to treat fibro fog. You do not always need to rely on medication or pharmaceuticals. Making lifestyle changes and treating the symptoms that cause cognitive dysfunction will go a long way to helping you get your mind back. Go for the pain first. Treat the pain as adequately as you can. Use herbal remedies, Yoga, acupuncture, physical therapy, and a wholesome organic vitamin-rich diet to assist with pain control. More severe cases may need pharmaceutical medication, but try not to overload the system. Sometimes, drugs can actually make things worse because they mess with the chemistry of the body and the brain. If you have to take medication, use those that don’t have too much affect on the brain function, such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen and naproxen. Getting the pain under control is of utmost importance. It is the main player in fibromyalgia and once the pain is controlled, it will be much easier to focus on the other major symptoms.Once pain is relatively well-controlled, work on fixing sleeping disturbance and depression/anxiety symptoms. These can be remedied through proper exercise with yoga and/or Pilates, as well as eating foods and using herbs that have anti-inflammatory properties. People are often very surprised by how much regular exercise (30 minutes a day) can make a difference on mentality. When people think about exercise, they think of physical appearance, but most of the benefits happen internally and mentally. Other things you can do to help cognition and memory is to read more often, work on logic and other kinds of puzzles, play word games like Scrabble, and do memory-building exercises like learning mnemonics. Focus on one thing at a time so as not to get overwhelmed and discouraged. Do all this while listening to classic or soft soothing music. Getting symptoms of fibromyalgia under control is a slow and steady process, and treating the fibro fog is no different.
At the end of the day remember to stay positive and keep using your mind to fix the issue. Remember the brain is like a muscle…if each section is not used, it will atrophy.
Sourced From : http://www.healthmatterstoday.net/effects-of-fibromyalgia-on-brain-function/