I began to teach Yoga for Fibromyalgia a few years ago with the intention to spread mind and body peace to practitioners. This intention caused me to research and learn what is the latest and greatest information we have to support the benefits of Yoga for Fibromyalgia. According to WebMD “Fibromyalgia is the most common musculoskeletal condition after osteoarthritis. Still, it is often misdiagnosed and misunderstood. Its characteristics include widespread muscle and joint pain and fatigue, as well as other symptoms. Fibromyalgia can lead to depression and social isolation.”
It seems that for a large majority of those who suffer from Fibromyalgia there is quite often trauma in their lives that they experienced in their childhood or from a traumatic event. There are many types and categories of childhood trauma and there is a scale that you can find for your Adverse Childhood Events (ACE) score. I found that in addition to the biological, genetic and adverse childhood events one faces our current lifestyle is so stressful and we are stimulating our internal fight/flight stress mode, which is being stimulated much more than our bodies were designed to handle.
“Fibromyalgia is believed to be a nervous system condition of over active nerves. Nerves send pain signals to your brain. … But many believe that the pain of fibromyalgia comes from “central sensitization.” This means that the problem might be a result of overactive nerves in the central nervous system (CNS), which can cause a more intense response to pain. According to FibroCenter.com.
One of the benefits of Yoga is to use physical poses, breath work and meditation to help stimulate the rest and digest response in the parasympathetic nervous system to allow the body to heal internally. I believe it is truly a multimodality approach to move toward internal homeostasis and optimal or even functional health. Yoga can be one of the layers of care to help learn to notice the triggers of stress and to implement techniques to keep the body from going down that path of fight/flight or overactive nerves.