Does Menstruation Make Women's Fibromyalgia Pain Worse?

fibromyalgia triggers

Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain syndrome that affects more or less 10 million Americans, 80-90% of whom are women. But what causes fibromyalgia, and why do women tend to experience it more severely than men? Here we'll enumerate some of the most common fibromyalgia triggers and explore why women have it worse, as well as an effective care regimen you can pursue to manage fibromyalgia. If you're living with fibromyalgia, knowledge is powerunderstanding what sets your pain off, first and foremost, can help you manage it more effectively. 


Common Fibromyalgia Triggers

Fibromyalgia patients know their symptoms, but understanding what sets them off is vital to getting the proper care. One of the best methods to dodge or at least minimize the frequency of your flares is determining your triggers; this is helpful as, up to now, experts cannot pinpoint a single reason why fibromyalgia occurs. 

Triggers may vary per person. Some are unavoidable, while some may even be beyond your control. You can try to track what triggers or aggravates your symptoms by keeping a log of your activities, diet, sleep patterns, the weather, and other notable events that you feel contribute to your symptoms. Keeping an updated list of these possible triggers can help you see a pattern that will help you better manage your condition in the future. Pay attention to the following as they might be connected to your fibromyalgia flares:

  • Physical stress, including trauma or injury
  • Psychological stress
  • Weather and temperature changes
  • Changes in hormonal levels
  • Travel or change in schedule
  • Treatment
  • Diet
  • Poor sleep quality


Why Women Have It Worse

Let's first set things straight, fibromyalgia can happen to anyone at any age. However, this disorder has logged more cases and diagnoses in women, particularly middle-aged ones from 35 to 45 years old. This illness is also quite challenging to diagnose. Patients may also experience anxiety and depression down the line, which can be harmful and contribute to more attacks. So how come fibromyalgia is worse in women? We believe three significant factors contribute to this.

1. Tender Points 

Women are believed to have more tender points than their male counterparts. Patients with fibromyalgia may experience widespread tenderness. These uncomfortable symptoms may disappear once in a while and flare up one moment before the next. If you have fibromyalgia, you may experience how this pain and tenderness interfere with your day-to-day routine and tasks since movement is guaranteed to be painful.

Women tend to experience fibromyalgia symptoms more, sometimes even longer, because they have more tender points than men and are hypersensitive to pain and tenderness.

If you've been exploring relief options for fibromyalgia, your doctor may have mentioned the 18 points or areas in your body that experience the brunt of pain when touched. Some of these tender points are located in the joints and the pelvic area. Women who usually experience tenderness in their pelvic region may have chronic pelvic pain and dysfunction (CPPD).

fibromyalgia triggers






2. Bowel and Bladder Problems

CPPD can bring about other conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and painful bladder syndrome (PBS), which women are more vulnerable to experience.

IBS is linked to bowel issues beyond diarrhea, constipation, abdominal pain, and gas. On the other hand, PBS is a condition affecting your bladder and urination. This can lead to pain while urinating, bladder pressure, and cramps. Women with PBS may also experience painful and uncomfortable intercourse. 

3. Menstruation

More women struggle every month during their menstrual cycles. The hormonal changes during this period sometimes accompany several health concerns such as pain, migraines, and more. These hormonal changes experienced every month are unique to a woman. This is also a known fibromyalgia trigger that intensifies the menstrual cramps and pain women experience during their period. Apart from the usual cramps, you may also notice muscle soreness, irritability, and anxiety during your period.


Natural Care for Fibromyalgia

Patients usually look for effective ways to manage their symptoms and reduce discomfort, usually linked to specific fibromyalgia triggers. You may want to explore some or all these options:

  • Modify your diet
  • Stay hydrated
  • Incorporate stress-relieving activities in your daily routine
  • Engage in movement and exercise
  • Seek Upper Cervical Chiropractic care


It’s About Time to Give Upper Cervical Chiropractic a Try

Some natural care options we mentioned are self-explanatory, so we'd like to focus more on Upper Cervical Chiropractic care. Despite the complications surrounding fibromyalgia, it's been proven that this is a neurological disorder. This means this condition impacts your central nervous system (CNS). If your CNS malfunctions, it can bring out different conditions, such as fibromyalgia, by affecting your sensory processing system. 

Unknown to many, a misalignment in the upper cervical spine puts unnecessary stress and pressure on your brainstem, which interferes with the smooth coordination of your CNS. Any physical trauma that involves your neck and head, even those from some time ago, can affect the alignment of your upper cervical spine, eventually contributing to the development of your symptoms linked to fibromyalgia.

Only Upper Cervical Chiropractic Doctors are certified to assess and correct misalignments in the neck safely. Correcting the misalignment can relieve the pressure off your brainstem, help your body heal naturally, and let your CNS function normally again. Once your brain and spine communicate without interference again, you might notice that your pain, discomfort, and other symptoms related to fibromyalgia may start disappearing. 

You may use our directory to find a reliable Chiropractic Doctor near you and narrow your search by putting your location. There are specially designed techniques such as NUCCA, Blair, Orthospinology, Knee Chest, and Upper Cervical Care that your Chiropractic Doctor practice that is designed to help with your condition. The whole process is unique and will be customized based on your needs to ensure you get lasting relief.


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The content and materials provided in this web site are for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to supplement or comprise a medical diagnosis or other professional opinion, or to be used in lieu of a consultation with a physician or competent health care professional for medical diagnosis and/or treatment. All content and materials including research papers, case studies and testimonials summarizing patients' responses to care are intended for educational purposes only and do not imply a guarantee of benefit. Individual results may vary, depending upon several factors including age of the patient, severity of the condition, severity of the spinal injury, and duration of time the condition has been present.