Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain syndrome that affects between 3 and 9 million adults in the USA. It is not a specific disease – it describes a host of symptoms that occur simultaneously such as body pain, sensitivity and pressure in some body parts. These tender points are sensitive to pressure in people suffering from fibromyalgia unlike other body parts. Furthermore, people suffering from back pain or arthritis don’t find the same spots sensitive.
Science has yet to grasp the cause of fibromyalgia – some patients develop the syndrome after trauma or illness and luckily, it doesn’t progress into a degenerative disorder that may lead to paralysis, memory loss or other losses of body function. Although the cause is still not determined, some headache treatments (antidepressants, tizanidine, aerobic exercise and psychological pain management skills) have been known to relieve the symptoms of fibromyalgia.
Here are the most common symptoms of the syndrome:
- Tender points on the body;
- Morning stiffness;
- Irritable bowel syndrome;
- Concentration problems;
- Numbness and tingling in the arms, hands, feet and legs;
- Pain during urination and a change in the frequency;
- Painful menstrual cramps;
- Sleeping problems.
Are chronic headaches a symptom of fibromyalgia?
Chronic headaches such as tension-type headaches are common in 40% of fibromyalgia patients, and are an additional problem that can significantly affect the sufferer’s ability to cope with the symptoms. The headaches are probably caused by pain in the neck and upper back, as well as by the contraction of neck muscles. They may be caused by tender points on the back of the head and neck as well. Whatever the reason is, headaches are always caused by a medical problem, which is why they need to be properly diagnosed and treated.
According to the National Headache Foundation, more than 29 million Americans suffer from chronic migraines and fibromyalgia, which affect women 3 times more than men. And, although there is no known cure for the condition, recent scientific studies have uncovered a potential treatment.
Daith piercing can relieve fibromyalgia and headaches
The painful headaches can be caused by some foods, fluorescent lightning or everyday tasks and excessive noise. There isn’t a common treatment as different people suffer from different causes, so people are trying to relive the pain with pills or different treatments. And, while some may help some people, others are frustrated with the inability to relieve their headaches. However, there might be something that can help – daith piercing.
The daith piercing is a small ring that pierces the inner cartilage of the ear and runs through a specific pressure point that may relieve headaches and fibromyalgia. This new procedure is performed at tattoo and piercing shops although there’s not much statistics to back it up. Some tattoo artists such as Dave Kurlander from the Tempest Artistic Studios in New York claim that the daith piercing is the way to go. “I’ve had many people come to me looking for migraine relief. It’s a much cheaper alternative to medicine and even acupuncture, and many of their doctors recommend it to them, and if you’re into piercings that’s even better,” he says.
Daith ear cartilage piercing
The process is cheap and takes only 10 minutes of your time. Acupuncture may help some people, but this process is far cheaper and it is a one-time treatment. Like acupuncture, the process hits a pressure point that relieves head pressure. Some professionals like to put a small metal ball in the pressure point that stays in for up to 2 weeks, and can be pushed around whenever you’re feeling stress or headaches.
Kimberly Glatz, 24, has been suffering from fibromyalgia for more than a year. And got the daith piercing last month. “Before I got it done my headaches were really, really bad. Terrible. Just extremely painful,” she said. “Now, I’ve seen some difference, I don’t know if it’s from the piercing or not. I can’t exactly pin point what changed my headaches, but I’ve definitely seen an improvement and it’s worth trying,” Kimberly says.
No one can say that the piercing works for sure, but there are many fibromyalgia patients that have reported great results. Plus, it’ll make you way cooler. “Essentially, it’s the same concept as acupuncture, the piercing hits a pressure point which then relieves the pressure in your head. I recommend getting it done on the ear that corresponds with the side of your head where most of your migraines hit,” Kurlander says. But, if there’s no scientific evidence behind it, how do we know if it works. Well, according to Tammi Bergman, you have to believe in the alternative treatments for fibromyalgia. “Sometimes relief of fibromyalgia and anxiety is psychological, but that’s not a bad thing, it’s a mind-set. Sometimes you really have to believe it for it to work,” she says. It may be a long shot, but hey, is there anything else you can try?
Some of the most common treatments for fibromyalgia include getting proper rest overnight, regular exercise, eating a healthy diet, stress reduction, acupuncture, dietary supplements and massage. Yoga might help as well, and some patients have had success with behavioral therapy and Tai Chi. The FDA recommends 3 prescription medications against fibromyalgia: Lyrica, Cymbalta and Savella.