As if living with fibromyalgia isn’t bad enough, this chronic pain syndrome (or disease) has all sorts of unusual signs and symptoms. If you aren’t familiar with fibromyalgia, it’s a rather mysterious condition, because it affects your whole body with all sorts of painful and almost unexplainable symptoms.
“It is scary not being in control of your body as so many different things happen on any given day and 24/7 pain. Not one day is the same as the other, so I go through life one day at a time.”
According an article from to the Mayo Clinic, ‘Fibromyalgia is a disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain, accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues. Researchers believe that fibromyalgia amplifies painful sensations by affecting the way your brain processes pain signals.’
As one fibro sufferer explained online, “It is scary not being in control of your body as so many different things happen on any given day and 24/7 pain. Not one day is the same as the other, so I go through life one day at a time.”
Common Signs of Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia starts with symptoms like widespread achy pain that you can feel on both sides of your body. The onset of this pain usually lasts for three months. Fatigue is another common problem that makes this chronic condition especially hard to live with, because it means even if you get good sleep, you still wake up tired.
#1 – Fibro Fog
The term “fibro fog” is similar to the term pregnant women and new moms use called “pregnancy brain.” It means you have trouble remembering things and your ability to concentrate like you normally do is difficult. Your brain simply feels “foggy.” Fibro fog can make it difficult to follow conversations, do simple math calculations or cause you to misplace things often.
While it may sound odd, it’s a very common and serious complaint from fibromyalgia sufferers. According to an article on WebMD, “Over half of people with fibromyalgia say they have these kinds of problems, and many feel the fog impacts their lives more than the pain, tenderness, and fatigue.”
#2 – Sensitivity to Light & Sound
If you’ve ever had a migraine, you know how much light sensitivity hurts. Unfortunately for people with fibromyalgia, hypersensitivity to their surroundings in another common sign. Things like being bothered by bright lights and loud sounds is a common, yet odd symptom of fibromyalgia.
#3 – Difficulties with Colors & Smells
Fibromyalgia can also impact other senses, like how you see colors and your sense of smell. Some people even report strange smell sensations when there are no odors present. According to an article on Fibromyalgia Treating, “You may have difficulty with driving at night or you may lose the ability to distinguish the difference between colors. Some people are more sensitive to strong odors, which is not the same as being allergic to specific fragrances.”
#4- Uncomfortable Skin Sensations
Another strange sign of fibromyalgia is paresthesia. That’s when you experience uncomfortable sensations like itching, numbness, ‘pins and needles,’ tingling or burning. It can also be the sensation like something is crawling on you. A big problem about paresthesia is not just the sensations themselves, but the heightened anxiety about when the symptoms may happen, since they are unpredictable.
#5 – Chest Pain & Signs of Fibromyalgia
A scary, strange sign of fibromyalgia is chest pain that can you make you think you’re suffering a heart attack. This is quite serious in nature, because it tends to require immediate medical attention. According to New Life Outlook, “The chest is one of the trigger points where fibro patients experience pain.” It usually presents as a sharp pain in the chest with no other symptoms.
#6 – Controlling Body Temperature
As if all of the aforementioned signs aren’t bad enough, another common complaint is excessive sweating. Since fibromyalgia affects the certain parts of the brain, it would make sense that your brain has trouble regulating your body temperature. These are the same receptors that regulate your bowels and other bodily functions.
If you’re suffering from some of these strange signs of fibromyalgia, the good news is you’re not alone. Your concerns, anxiety, pain and discomfort are valid, because thousands of other people are experiencing the same thing. If you’ve spoken to your doctor, but are still struggling to make sense of this chronic condition, you can find many resources online like fibromyalgia support groups and discussion boards to help you better navigate your symptoms.
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I wad diagnosed with fribro in eary 2000 after going through a divorce where my husband then accused me of so many things because just touching me or laying his leg on mine in the bed was exxruciating. I thought I was loosing my mind. I finally left my Mom talk me into seeing a great doctor that retired in 2020 and I so miss him, but after test and test and other doctors theat was the finally dagnosis. There were times I prayed to die but the Father above ketpt me going for my kids. I try now after coming off of pain meds and learning to watch what I do and how much I do and I do try when weather allows to walk but for people that do not experience this they will never know the mental pain as well as the physical. I smell thins that I think sometimes my house is on fire or someone is smoking in my house. My senses or all over the place and I will not lie I still have days I struggle to get throough. My doctor told me I was one of his worst cases. I asked him was he trying to make me feel better because it wasn’t working. I pray for anyone out there that is dealing with this to find a great doctor and help. No you are not crazy and nver let anyone make you feel that way.. Thank you for all the psoting you put up. It still helps when you deal with this to read and know you are not loosing your mind or it is not in your mind. Thank you!
I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 2001. I have always been sensitive to temperature. I am either too hot or too cold. My feet and hands are always cold unless I have them in hot water. I ache all over and some days the simplest task is exhausting. The last few months have been extremely difficult as it is taking me longer to recoup my energy than ever before. It is so frustrating. On the bright side…I am retired so can take each day as it comes.
Shirley I am there with you and I had to give up my job in 2005 because getting up and down stairs , walking and finally one morning I could not get out of bed. That kept happening and my doctor told me now you deal with it. I worked as a letter carrier making really great money and I still had 2 sons in school. I had to get my priorities in line and my kids were the number 1 there. GOD provides and takes care of me. Not what I wanted but I am blessed. My feet and hands are the same and I also have nerve damage in my toes with almost no feeling. You are in my prayers as all who have this still unknown condition.