Sunday, May 8, 2011

May is Fibromyalgia Awareness month

Every month is chock full of awareness dates, but this May, fibromyalgia awareness has more meaning to me. For years, I've been having issues that had me visiting doctors, trying to figure out what was wrong. The biggest problem was that all my tests all came back negative, normal. On paper, I was as healthy as could be. In person, not so much. Recently, one doctor actually sat down and listened to all my complaints - not just one or two specific to a specialty in medicine. He came out and said I had fibromyalgia.

Now, to be perfectly honest, that was not what I wanted to hear, but it was what I expected to hear. I would have preferred to hear that I was  hypothyroid or something like that - allowing me to have something that can be identified and specifically treated. But, no such luck. However, it is nice - for me - to have a name to what has been plaguing me all these years. I no longer feel like I'm lazy or worthless because I am too sleepy to get through the day without at least one nap, if not two. I no longer think I'm a wimp because something that causes moderate discomfort to one person is extremely painful to me. I no longer think I have some terrible illness because of the pain I have, because I know it's "normal" for me to have it.

There are many websites that discuss fibromyalgia and there is a lot of misinformation out there. So if you are trying to learn more, I urge you to be sure you go to legitimate places, not sites that promise you cures if you send them money. I'm not saying there aren't some things that can help manage fibro, I just don't want people falling for snake oil cures.

How can you be sure the site is on the up and up? Look at the "about us" section and see who is backing the site and where the information is coming from. How long has the site been in existence? Do other sites link to it? What sites do they link to? Do they say anything that looks too good to be true?

Be careful, do your due diligence. It's bad enough having a syndrome that isn't understood, you don't want to be scammed either, right?