I have since learned this sensitivity to touch is called Allodynia. Allodynia is a heightened sensitivity to touch, which results in pain from things that normally would not cause discomfort. I simply have said that "my skin hurts."
Some mornings I would wake up with such muscle pain that I could hardly move. I wondered what I did in my sleep that caused this severe achy sharp pain. My new doctor did a rash of tests, ruling out such things as rheumatoid arthritis. He then spent time pushing on specific pressure points to see if I had pain. When I screamed out with one spot, he said, "Yep, it's fibromyalgia."
As you can see, diagnosing this condition is difficult. There are no specific blood tests that go Oh Yeah! This is it! It is mostly a process of elimination. When first diagnosed, I was just so happy to know what this all was I said I didn't need ay medication to help with it. Extra ibuprofen was good enough. But in the years since, the pain has increased and other symptoms have become more troublesome.
Besides the pain--a widespread deep or burning pain above and below your waist and on the right and left sides of your body. Pain is more common in the trunk, neck, low back, hips, and shoulders. It usually gets worse gradually and can interfere with even simple daily activities--I experience these symptoms (some I didn't know were associated with fibro until recently). What I experience is personal; others might experience other things:
- Sleep problems, such as trouble falling asleep or staying asleep, or waking up feeling tired.
- Foggy thinking--called "fibro fog"--clouds my thinking, especially when I am having a flare-up. Some of the common signs of fibro fog include a difficulty with word finding or substitution, loss of short-term memory, and occasionally even episodic disorientation that lasts for about 30 to 60 seconds. I have been driving and momentarily forget where I am and why I am there. For example, I was at a T-intersection with my blinker signaling left. I had no idea why I wanted to turn left, but I trusted that I knew where I was going so I turned left. Then TaDa! I remembered why and where.
- Exhaustion and depression. I don't want to move. First it is often so painful to actually move and secondly because it seems like just too much work. I have to say the pup loves these days :) She just sits on my lap, snoozing in lap-slut heaven.
- Excess sweating. I have been experiencing night sweats again and when I am in any type of heat, I sweat like a pig (except pigs don't sweat...like a...very sweaty person :) ). I keep saying "I have become a woman who sweats." But just recently I have learned that this is an odd symptom of fibromyalgia.
For years it was thought to be all in our heads, especially since women are seven times greater to have fibromyalgia than men. Women's health issues have long been thought of as "psychological" or imagination. Today it is being diagnosed much sooner with different drugs and treatments helping people with the pain management and severity. Yay!