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Is Fibromyalgia an Autoimmune Disease?

Someone experiencing body pain

If you’ve been struggling with the symptoms linked to fibromyalgia, you certainly at one point or another have asked yourself this question…

Does fibromyalgia count as an autoimmune disease?

Even though we've learned much more about fibromyalgia in the past few years, many healthcare providers still struggle to give their patients a diagnosis of fibromyalgia for a variety of reasons.

With just about everything related to fibromyalgia, that answer is not as straightforward as you would probably like it to be.

Anyone who has had fibromyalgia symptoms probably already knows this.

And they know the enormous amount of time it has taken to be taken seriously.

From doctors and therapists, to even family and friends, those suffering from fibromyalgia struggle to get others to see their disorder as being just as legitimate a disease as an autoimmune one.

The problem is this: fibromyalgia is a complicated and complex disease that affects people differently and presents with varied symptoms, some more severe than others.

And for any fibromyalgia patient that has been living with the chronic disorder for any period of time, you know the frustration this problem brings into your life on a daily basis.

So, let’s talk about your fibromyalgia symptoms and whether or not they classify as an autoimmune disease.

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Why Is No One Taking Fibromyalgia Seriously?

When you are living with a disease like fibromyalgia, sometimes you can feel very alone in your pain and frustration.

There is still so much to learn about this chronic illness and so little research that has still been done.

Part of the reason for this is that healthcare professionals, therapists, and scientists have oftentimes taken the approach that fibromyalgia has less to do with a person’s immune system and more to do with their central nervous system.

What that means is that – even though fibromyalgia affects millions of people in the United States alone – there is still a strong belief that it’s really just a problem “in your head” and the way your body deals with pain and not actual pain itself.

Diagnosing Fibromyalgia

In fact, up until very recently, most of the professional medical advice that patients with fibromyalgia like symptoms would receive is that they don’t actually have anything physically wrong with them.

These patients have been told for years that they must have pain sensing nerves in their brains which makes it likely that they just “feel” like they are in pain, even when they aren’t.

They are told they need to learn to manage pain better, and find perhaps engage in drug and psychological therapies that will help them process pain in a different way.

But this kind of treatment plan often falls short in helping fibromyalgia patients get the relief they are desperately seeking.

Having your doctor or other healthcare provider tell you that you may have increased pain sensitivity, doesn’t help figure out why you have the pain in the first place, now does it?

Living with chronic pain can be exhausting. And having your trusted healthcare providers suggest you may have to just live with it just increases that exhaustion.

But We Think There are Other Options

At Native Formulas, we’ve worked hard to help figure out what causes someone to battle with fibromyalgia symptoms and what can be done to alleviate them.

Living with chronic pain is not the answer. Finding solutions is.

Check out our Restore 3 Fibromyalgia, Candida, and Gut Biofilm Program

Are My Fibromyalgia Symptoms Typical of an Autoimmune Disease?

First, before we talk about what classifies as an autoimmune disease, let’s define the term a bit more clearly.

An autoimmune disease is the body going to war with itself.

Think about it this way…an autoimmune disorder occurs when your body begins to attack itself.

Our bodies are designed to self-regulate and most of the time they do a great job at this, thanks to our immune system being able to know when foreign cells have invaded our body and will work hard to destroy them.

A scientist looking into the microscope

But, sometimes our immune system will think that the healthy cells in our body are actually foreign ones. When this happens, the immune cells (or healthy cells) will be under attack as well.

When immune cells get attacked inside our body, an autoimmune disorder will develop.

Some of the most common autoimmune diseases are rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis and lupus, just to name a few.

Any autoimmune disorder like one of these is likely going to present with some similar symptoms, though each will have its own challenges as well.

How Your Cells Are Involved

One main similarity that autoimmune diseases have is that each autoimmune disorder involves the white blood cells in a person’s body. As the symptom inducing antibodies bind to the healthy cells, this will set off a series of problematic reactions in a person’s body, depending on which autoimmune disorder they are battling.

For some people, their autoimmune disorder can be effectively managed with certain treatment strategies.

For others, there seems to be little to no effective treatment and they experience devastating symptoms that keep them in chronic pain.

Widespread Pain is Common for Most Suffering from an Autoimmune Disorder

Here is one of the most common ways your fibromyalgia symptoms are going to present in a similar manner to an autoimmune disorder.

Widespread pain is one of the first symptoms a person may experience that then leads them to wonder if they have fibromyalgia syndrome. Though the pain can present itself in a vast variety of places on and within your body, the common denominator is that it’s widespread pain and not concentrated to one specific area.

For example, a person who is living with rheumatoid arthritis will usually experience widespread pain in their joints, since their pain sensing nerves in that area are inflamed as a result of their disease.

This type of discomfort will affect their activities, sleep, and ability to function on a day-to-day basis.

Fibromyalgia patients often wonder if they are developing a rheumatic disease when they first start to feel pain since it’s so similar to rheumatoid arthritis.

But whereas a rheumatic disease will cause pain in the joints, fibromyalgia patients tend to experience pain throughout their entire body.

Many people who are suffering from rheumatoid arthritis have turned to supplements to help manage their pain. You can browse some of the items at Native Formulas most widely used for joints and other types of pain.

You can check out our Biome V3 probiotic:

Fatigue is also Common for Most Suffering from an Autoimmune Disorder

Another very common immune response to an autoimmune disease is constant and chronic fatigue.

Patients will often state that – no matter how much sleep they get – they spend the majority of their days feeling exhausted.

Sometimes the exhaustion is so severe that a sufferer of an autoimmune disorder will struggle to do daily activities, hold down a job, or even care for their family or themselves.

This type of chronic, at times debilitating, fatigue is also a top symptom that people present with when they are later found to have fibromyalgia syndrome.

Why is No One Taking My Chronic Fatigue Seriously?

Devastating symptoms like exhaustion should never be taken lightly but – again – it’s easy for people in the medical field to sometimes dismiss a person having these symptoms if they can’t prove they are being caused by an autoimmune disorder.

A lady experiencing stomach issues

Giving a patient a clinical investigation of fatigue is not very tangible. Trying to “prove” your fatigue is more than just not getting enough sleep can be a challenge, and many doctors will offer their professional medical advice by saying that you just need to make sleep a bigger priority.

This kind of advice can make a fibromyalgia sufferer even more exhausted. Not being able to prove that their fatigue is more than how many hours of sleep they’re getting can be frustrating for the patient who feels as though no one believes them.

Digestive Issues are Another Common Symptom of Most Autoimmune Diseases

Like chronic pain and chronic fatigue, digestive issues are often seen in people who are experiencing fibromyalgia and autoimmune disorders, though they can present differently for different conditions.

Digestive issues are anything that takes place inside your digestive tract and can include things like acid reflux, chronic cramping, indigestion, and diarrhea.

For many sufferers of digestive issues, many medical professionals will prescribe medications that can provide some relief but won’t necessarily solve the problem indefinitely.

In order to make a difference in your long-term gut health, it’s important to look at multiple factors outside of just prescription drugs to alleviate the discomfort but not solve the actual problem.

And for those with fibromyalgia, getting treatment strategies for gut pain is hard enough…getting treatment strategies for gut solutions is even tougher.

An emotionally distressed person

Fibromyalgia can cause emotional distress as well.

If you have an autoimmune disease, healthcare professionals know that chronic pain, chronic fatigue, and digestive issues are all symptoms and side effects of your autoimmune disorder.

But for someone suffering from fibromyalgia syndrome, it’s much harder to convince professionals that your chronic pain and chronic fatigue are legitimate.

And… oftentimes those healthcare professionals don’t want to prescribe medications to you that they normally would prescribe to a patient suffering from an autoimmune disease, because they don’t see fibromyalgia syndrome as being one.

If you are in the unfortunate position of being a person who is suffering from fibromyalgia syndrome but can’t seem to get a proper diagnosis or prescription for relief from your symptoms, you may want to take a look at some of the products Native Formulas can offer you.

Our products have proven to be effective for thousands of people struggling with the lack of support from others in the healthcare industry.

Check out our Restore 3 Fibromyalgia, Candida, and Gut Biofilm Program

Even if Fibromyalgia Isn’t an Autoimmune Disease, You Still Don’t Need to Suffer in Silence

Though there is much controversy around whether or not fibromyalgia should be considered an autoimmune disorder, we at Native Formulas don’t think it should matter.

Your symptoms are your symptoms.

Your pain is your pain.

But trying to find medical professionals who support and understand that is going to be a struggle that you are going to have to endure until the medical community is able to recognize fibromyalgia for what it is and begin treating it as a serious medical condition.

Foot massage

And… until those same medical professionals begin to admit that fibromyalgia is not just “in your head” but is part of your immune system, and how it affects everything from muscle weakness to sleep disorders to emotional distress, then fibromyalgia patients will have to continue to seek relief on their own.

There is an enormous unmet clinical need for more fibromyalgia support. And further research must be done to bring more answers to patients who are suffering from it.

Where is the Best Place to Turn for My Fibromyalgia Relief?

Anytime you are experiencing chronic pain, excessive fatigue, or digestive issues, the first place you should start for help is your medical provider’s office.

After a physical exam (and perhaps a series of tests) your healthcare provider will hopefully be able to rule out some of the potential diseases that could be causing your exhaustion and pain.

But, just because your doctor can rule out what isn’t causing your discomfort, doesn’t mean he or she will give you a clear fibromyalgia diagnosis what is causing it.

In fact, many fibromyalgia patients leave their physician’s offices feeling as if they have more questions than they did when they entered.

Though there is no cure for fibromyalgia, there are ways to relieve it.

And if you can’t find that relief in your doctor’s office, you need to advocate for yourself and see if you can find it somewhere else.

Many of the products that are currently available will treat your fibromyalgia the same way they treat autoimmune diseases but knowing where to start can feel overwhelming and intimidating to many who have been told that their symptoms are more in their head than in their actual body.

There are some great support sites, groups, and literature to help you navigate through living with fibromyalgia syndrome and the symptoms associated with it.

One place to start would be to download a copy of The Biofilm Buster Action Plan.

Not only is it a free download, it can help you on your path to finding the way to not just live with your fibromyalgia symptoms, but actually start to alleviate them and find your path back to the life you deserve.

A life without chronic pain, constant fatigue and digestive issues that keep you from doing the things you used to love to do.

Though research suggests that fibromyalgia is not a legitimate autoimmune disorder, those who have suffered from it know that it still deserves to be treated like one. And there are some novel treatment strategies out there that can do just that.

Remember… fibromyalgia can be an incredibly isolating disease, but it doesn’t have to be. There are people who know what you are living with and can help you find some ways to your relief.

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