What is a flare?
A few people with fibromyalgia may tend to face a few symptoms more regularly than the other patients. The aggravation that is associated with fibromyalgia varies and may exacerbate. An individual with fibromyalgia is expected to experience a few mild symptoms on a routine basis; however, when the symptoms exacerbate or become more regular for a timeframe, is said to be a flare. Flare could be defined as an ephemeral rise in the extent or potency of the symptoms. A flare is the aggravation of pre-existing mild symptoms, and the exact time frame for any symptom worsening to be referred to as a flare is relative, nonetheless, for various fibromyalgia patients, the period lasts from several days or weeks of exacerbating symptoms.
The most remarkable characteristic of flare-up is that it visits unannounced, which means that patients are likely to experience a flare without any prior caution, almost immediately if the fibromyalgia sufferer is distressed or anxious. It can take up to a few days to several weeks for the flare to get normal. However, anything shorter than the aforementioned timeframe could easily be thought of as the usual fading and reappearing routine of the fibromyalgia symptoms.
Normal symptoms of Fibromyalgia
The normal symptoms of fibromyalgia comprise:
- Extreme muscle ache
- Muscle and bone constraint particularly in the morning or in low-activity periods
- Issues with sleep, like longer periods required to properly fall asleep, and constant tiredness even after sleeping.
- Emotional problems, like anxiety, or depression
- Problems with cognition especially with memory, focus, and planning, known as fibro fog
- Fatigue accompanied by exhaustion makes it impossible to complete daily activities.
How to tell the flares apart from the normal symptoms
Now let’s be clear that these symptoms are the usual ones for fibromyalgia patients, the flares each of them experiences differently. This phenomenon is often explained by the researchers as the “relative-trigger concept”, which means every single fibromyalgia patient has a particular triggering point or a stimulus, which worsens their symptoms and hence results in their flares. This must also be made clear that the time frame extent or severity of the symptoms during a flare also varies with time. The most striking feature about fibromyalgia flares is that a sufferer who once had severe headaches as their highest flare point can now have to aggravate back discomfort as his new flare point, indicating that the pain tends to move in fibromyalgia patients with time.
Triggers for a flare-up of fibromyalgia
The best possible way to steer clear of a flare is to identify the agent that causes it, and then avoiding that particular stimulus. The flare-up triggers for fibromyalgia may differ from person to person; however, the commonest ones include:
- Physical stress
- Variation in the temperature
- Variation in the hormonal levels
- Physiological stress
- Any change in the daily routine or normal schedule
- Alteration in the treatment strategies
- Change in nutrition
- Lack of sleep or a proper sleep cycle
Individuals with fibromyalgia may encounter dizziness, hot or cold flushes, numbness or tingling sensations, clumsiness, discomforting instances, and restless leg syndrome. Routine pains and irregular sleeping patterns might also result in discomfort at work and even at home. Experts claim that stress, be it physical, mental, physiological, or even immunological or pathological, which is known to interfere with the body’s normal functioning is bound to cause a flare. The flaring stimuli may range from a stressful event in life, or anxiety to something as serious as a motor vehicle accident or surgery. It must also be kept in mind that flares could conveniently be triggered by irregular routine practices, like improper sleep patterns, complete lack of physical activity, or excess exercise. Individuals with fibromyalgia may encounter dizziness, hot or cold flushes, numbness or tingling sensations, clumsiness, discomforting instances, and restless leg syndrome. Routine pains and irregular sleeping patterns might also result in discomfort at work and even at home.
Treatment of Fibromyalgia Flare:
Even after the best precautions are taken, the fibromyalgia symptoms do flare-up. The patients would want to grab a medicine that will alleviate their symptoms and the flare, sadly there isn’t any proper treatment for flaring fibromyalgia. The researchers claim that their efforts have been more successful in preventing the flares to happen rather than at their treatment. Unfortunately, there isn’t any magic drug for the cure of fibromyalgia flares, as the already approved medicines take some time before they start working, and opioids don’t settle with a lot of patients. In the absence of an astonishingly effective drug, it is better to observe one’s health practices and behaviors, and start a healthier life routine, the absence of which will affect your symptoms and trigger a flare. Many fibromyalgia sufferers tend to appease their condition by excessive physical activity when they’re feeling better, and this pays back when their fibromyalgia flares up. Quite obviously the addition of new regimens to your daily routine sounds exhausting especially with fibromyalgia, body-mind interventions could be an excellent discomfort reliever. Fibromyalgia sufferers must-try activities like yoga, meditation, and deep breathing exercises.
Tips for the management of the flares
Some flares are inevitable, and various triggering stimuli are beyond our control. What the patients however can try is the detection of the triggering factor which worsens their symptoms and exacerbates the fibromyalgia, by keeping a proper record of the daily practices, like sleeping cycles, eating habits, and the interrelation of these routines with your symptoms. Registering these daily activities for a few months or weeks will greatly help you in observing a pattern. This pattern in turn will come in handy for the management and control of these factors which might flare the fibromyalgia.
There are a few stimuli that are under control and vigilant management of these triggers can help in better control of the disease. The following tips might come in handy for appeasing the unbearable symptoms:
- Recording the triggers
- Easing the stress and giving yourself some time to relax.
- Having a proper sleeping pattern with enough hours of sleep.
- Doing regular exercises like stretching, walking, swimming, and yoga.
- Not overexerting yourself
- Maintaining a healthy diet