Monday, March 28, 2011

Fibromyalgia Management: An Introduction

Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain disorder characterized by musculoskeletal pain, stiffness, general fatigue, soft tissue tenderness, and sleeping problems. The most affected areas include the neck, back, shoulders, pelvis, and hands. Patients suffering from fibromyalgia also experience a range of symptoms of varying intensities that increase and wane over time.

While the underlying causes of fibromyalgia still remain a mystery, new studies continue to bring information on the basic mechanisms of the disorder. Most researchers agree that fibromyalgia is a disorder of the central nervous system with neuro-endocrine and neurotransmitter dysfunction. Neurotransmitters of pain are in abundance while those that increase pain tolerance become dangerously low to be able to stave off the onset of pain.

Due to the variation of its symptoms, managing fibromyalgia requires a multidisciplinary approach. Physical rehabilitation and therapy, pain medications, and treatment for underlying injuries and illnesses are often prescribed for patients suffering from the disorder. Since chronic pain can also induce depression, psychological counseling and guidance are also recommended. The use of prescription medication, both for the chronic pain and psychological problems must also be strictly supervised since using them without a proper prescription can cause untoward side effects.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Jaw Pain

Jaw pain is a common ailment and has many causes. Injury, bruxism, or even tooth pain can all trigger jaw pain. To relieve jaw pain, do the following:

1. Apply moist heat or cold packs.
Apply a moist heat or cold pack on the side of your face. A warm washcloth applied to the side of your face can stimulate blood flow and soothe the nerves on your jaw. The warm heat can also relax the muscles on your face to ease the pain. On the other hand, ice packs numb the area so you do not feel the pain in your jaw.

2. Go on a liquid or soft diet.
By going on a soft but nutritious diet, you limit the chewing process. You can also make eating easier by cutting your food up in smaller pieces.

3. Wear splints or night guards.
Splints and night guards are plastic mouthpieces that fit over the upper and lower teeth. They keep the upper and lower teeth from coming together, hence, lessening the effects of clenching or grinding the teeth. They also correct the bite by positioning the teeth in their most correct and least traumatic position.

By: Kristine Gonzaga