CBD against fibromyalgia
What is fibromyalgia?
The word fibromyalgia itself comes from the Greek, and by breaking it down and translating it, we can quickly understand what fibromyalgia is (algia – pain, my – muscles, fibro – connective tissues). Patients most often experience pain in muscles, tendons or ligaments. There are other symptoms associated with it, which is why we often encounter the term fibromyalgia syndrome. It is a persistent (chronic) disease, but unlike arthritis, we do not see joint inflammation.
This musculoskeletal syndrome results in stiffness of the musculoskeletal system or widespread pain. Although it is not a rheumatic disease, rheumatology is the field that deals with the disease. You may think that this is an unknown health problem or a generational novelty, but the opposite is true. This pain syndrome occurs in people quite often. After all, up to 6% of the population encounters it (together with untreated cases up to 10%). The prevalence does not depend on social status, place where one lives or race. However, it should be added that it is much more common in women (up to 6 times more often), especially around the age of 50, then between 60-80 years of age.
Symptoms of fibromyalgia
The most common symptoms of the disease are fatigue and pain in various parts of the body. Chronic pain also often occurs. Usually several parts of the body are in pain. The diagnosis of firbomyalgia is thus determined quite often, since the patient is accustomed to claim that the whole body hurts him/her. Head, neck and back pain are the most commonly mentioned. The intensity varies from day to day, in more severe cases we register deep muscle pain. Symptoms are negatively affected by stress, for example. The aforementioned fatigue can make it impossible for a person to perform even normal activities; moreover, depression or lack of sleep can occur because of it.
Most problems occur after waking up or in the evening. General fatigue (occurring in up to 90% of cases) is already evident in the morning and can last all day. The latter results in tension or migraine headaches. From a psychiatric point of view, the patient suffers from anxiety or rapid mood changes. Depression or anxiety can also be triggers for this disease. Among cognitive disorders, problems with solving regular situations, memory problems or lack of concentration are well known. Brain fog is also an occasional brain fog that leads to poor results at school or work. This can then manifest itself in sleeping problems. A less common symptom is a panic attack.
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Vesicouteral syndrome
- Sensitivity to weather changes
- Whistling sounds and tinnitus in the ears
- Loss of concentration
- Anxiety and depression
- Sleep disorders
- Memory disorders
- Chronic fatigue
- Stiffness and area pain
- Various somatic symptoms
Frequently asked questions about CBD
Causes of fibromyalgia
The exact causes of fibromyalgia are not yet scientifically known, as the American Society of Rheumatology has maintained since 1990, when it gave its official definition. However, several scientific studies have shown significant changes in the levels of certain chemicals in the central nervous system and brain. This is where changes in the levels of neurotransmitters, the chemicals used to transport oxygen from the brain to the muscles and back, occur. The disease also negatively affects the ability of neurotransmitters to transmit signals between brain cells or nerves. Patients experience an increase in the level of substance P (a chemical compound) in the cerebrospinal fluid, which in turn increases the level of pain in the body.
Fibromyalgia can also be triggered by the psyche, i.e. stress, various traumas or depression. In some cases, this disease appears as an accompanying phenomenon of viral infections or rheumatic diseases. However, it is not arthritis, nor are cancers associated with it.
Forms of fibromyalgia
This disease can have several manifestations. Fibromyalgia is not defined as an autoimmune disease. Although in the past it was ranked among rheumatology problems, this is not the case now. Rather, autoimmune problems may occur alongside it. Rheumatism and fibromyalgia have similar symptoms, but they are different diseases. Blood values in fibromyalgia often indicate low lymphocyte counts. The most common symptom of fibromyalgia is headache, but more serious complications, such as heart problems, also occur.
Doctors have also recently encountered a familial form, which may be due to genetic predisposition. However, associations with specific gene polymorphisms for the dopaminergic, catecholaminergic and serotoninergic systems have been found. Another specific process is central sensitization, which involves an amplified response of the central nervous system to peripheral stimulation. The latter results in the persistence and development of painful conditions. Fibromyalgia also develops dysregulation of the descending inhibitory pathway, in which there is a lack of pain modulation. A special form of the disease is one that is caused by metabolic or biochemical changes, or by infections, physical injuries or other traumas.
Treatment of fibromyalgia
The treatment of fibromyalgia is not based on conventional drugs, which do not yet exist to such an extent that they can defeat the disease. This is a complex syndrome that is accompanied by a large number of symptoms. Therefore, we need to take a multidisciplinary approach to treatment. Initially, non-pharmaceutical steps are recommended, followed by pharmacological treatment (sleep disorders, severe pain), psychotherapy (depression, anxiety, other psychological problems) or complex rehabilitation (severe disability and deconditioning).
Clinical studies have confirmed that a number of cases experience symptom relief with appropriate exercise. These are mainly aerobic exercises such as cycling, swimming or walking. Various stretches, such as yoga, can also help. A special method is a bath in a heated pool (balneotherapy). If you are inclined to do so, seek advice from a physiotherapist or doctor. If it is not available to you, just soak in your own tub of warm water for about 30 minutes.
However, there is still medication that can help, but this depends on the overall condition of the patient. Their effect is often short-lived and its aim is more to reduce the release of facilitatory neurotransmitters or to increase the activity of inhibitory neurotransmitters. Doctors prescribe special medications for sleep disorders or severe pain. But many of them address only one health issue, are prescription-only and often carry risks of side effects. To eliminate these drawbacks, try CBD-containing products. This is a very popular step at the moment when asking what helps with fibromyalgia.
The connection between CBD and fibromyalgia works thanks to several positive effects of this substance. Most often, patients opt for CBD oil for fibryolmyalgia. First and foremost, cannabidiol is a great pain reliever. And it is chronic pain that is one of the main symptoms of the disease. It prevents the formation of spasms and also solves muscle spasms. CBD helps to suppress inflammation of tendons and joints, which appears in almost every patient. Preclinical studies have shown an interaction between ECS and CBD when examining painful joints, confirming the analgesic properties of the substance.
CBD oil for fibromyalgia is also effective in the case of sleep disorders, as it has antidepressant and calming effects. Stress, lack of sleep or chronic fatigue are common reasons for the body’s more severe pain manifestations. In fact, CBD also interacts with the activity of astrocytes found in the brain, which control the regulation of inflammation and synaptic activity.
Thanks to these preparations, patients are also able to resolve problems associated with post-traumatic syndrome, anxiety or depression. Fibromyalgia often appears after a specific crisis stress situation. Cannabidiol helps to buffer excessive stress effectively by, for example, removing the underlying inflammation in the brain.