By: Lily James
Fibromyalgia can be an incredibly painful disease, and if you deal with it, you may know that there are sometimes some very embarrassing consequences that come along with having it.
The most frustrating side effects, by far, are the ones that deal with the urinary tract and the pelvic area. What sort of symptoms are we talking about here? What do we have to live with, and how can we cope with them? In this article, we’re going to explore those questions and more.
What Urinary Tract Symptoms Are Associated with Fibromyalgia?
When you have fibromyalgia, there are a lot of symptoms that may show up, and the ones in the urinary tract can be incredibly uncomfortable if we don’t get them taken care of. As you may expect, incontinence is probably the number one issue that people with fibromyalgia deal with.
If you don’t know what incontinence is, in layman’s terms, it’s when your body can’t actually hold the urine in for an extended period of time. You may leak urine in between bathroom trips, or you may even be unable to hold it for an extended period of time.
Another issue is the frequency in which people with fibromyalgia have to urinate. If you’re suffering from the disorder, you may notice that you are going to the bathroom a lot more often than you used to. You may feel as if you have this sudden urge to go to the restroom, even if you just urinated a few minutes earlier.
In some cases, people may feel embarrassed to leave the house or they may be unable to attend events where they may not have easy access to a restroom. Another common problem that can occur with fibromyalgia is a burning sensation when you urinate, known as dysuria. This is often alongside other issues like abdominal pain and bloating.
What Pelvic Symptoms Are Associated with Fibromyalgia?
There are a number of pelvic and abdominal symptoms that you may also deal with as symptoms of your fibromyalgia. One of the most common abdominal symptoms that you will cope with as part of your fibromyalgia is abdominal pain.
You may feel sharp pains in your stomach or you may feel like you have to double over in order to get the pain to at least subside somewhat. This is usually accompanied by bloating, gas, and a variety of other issues that can come up in the pelvic region. Of course, you have the other issues that may occur as well. Constipation is common, especially if you aren’t taking care of your diet properly.
Another unfortunate side effect that happens in the pelvic region is known as Dyspareunia. Dyspareunia is a disorder where women (sorry ladies – this doesn’t occur in men very often, but it can happen) feel uncomfortable while they are having sex, and sometimes will have a lot of pain during the process of having sex.
It makes it so that sex is no longer enjoyable, and it can also cause women a lot of embarrassment and depression. The pain can be pretty much anywhere, whether it’s in the vagina, the labia, and even the clitoris. It just hurts somewhere in the vaginal region, which makes it uncomfortable (and in the worst cases, impossible) to have sex.
It some cases, it can make the relationship strained, especially if the woman doesn’t look for help with her Dyspareunia. No one actually knows where it comes from, since intercourse pain is usually related to STD’s, but it does happen and it can be frustrating.
How Do We Cope with These Symptoms?
So, as always, we come to the important question. How do we deal with the symptoms that we are suffering from on a regular basis? First off, even though they can be embarrassing to talk about, you want to make sure that you talk to your specialist about them.
They are there to help you, whether you’re dealing with incontinence or Dyspareunia. We know that it can be difficult to deal with, but the first step to getting the help you need is talking to the specialists that you are working with.
Many times, people with urinary and pelvic issues will have to have some sort of therapy in order to deal with them better. Physical therapy is common, and basically what happens is that you have to learn how to retrain your bladder.
There are all sorts of exercises that you can do in order to help your bladder get stronger, and that can teach your body to react properly to different stimuli. It may take a while for you to get your body back into the shape that it used to be in before the incontinence started.
Last but not least, make sure that you’re taking care of yourself. Communicate with your loved ones about what is going on so that you don’t strain the relationships that you are in. Make sure that you are exercising as much as you can (it’s hard with the pain, we understand), and that you’re getting a full night’s sleep. Your diet is also important. As with any disorder, someone with fibromyalgia has to put their own self care as a huge priority – if you don’t, it will just make your life a lot more difficult than it needs to be.
Living with fibromyalgia can be incredibly difficult, and it’s hard to explain to others what the daily pain even feels like. It’s very stressful, and these sorts of symptoms can just make it more difficult to deal with. With the help of your doctor and by being vigilant, you can prevent a lot of these issues.
If they seem to come up and you don’t know how to take care of them properly, contact your specialist as soon as possible – they will be able to give you the resources and treatment you need in order to live a normal life.
Urinary and Pelvic Symptoms in Fibromyalgia www.fibromyalgia-symptoms.org/fibromyalgia_urinary.html
The Multidisciplinary Approach to Defining the Urologic Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndromes