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Is fibromyalgia a psychological problem?

Dawn Marcus
Neurology
Any chronic health problem like fibromyalgia can make you feel frustrated, irritable, and moody. If you're sleeping poorly and feeling exhausted, your mood will likely be worse. Some people are reluctant to mention mood problems to their doctor, perhaps because they think it's normal or because they expect to feel anxious and depressed if they have pain and sleep problems. Maybe you're embarrassed that you snap at your children and cry easily. Perhaps you're afraid that if you tell your doctor you're in a bad mood, your fibromyalgia symptoms will be blamed on depression.

You are not alone. One in three people with fibromyalgia experiences significant depression or anxiety. It's important for you to know, however, that fibromyalgia is definitely not a psychiatric, psychological, or mental health problem. Indeed, research shows that pain and mood problems are not directly related to each other in people with fibromyalgia. They are separate symptoms that do not go hand-in-hand -- your pain won't automatically get better just because your mood improves, and vice versa. Mood problems are just one of the many sets of symptoms that often occur in people with fibromyalgia.
The Woman's Fibromyalgia Toolkit: Manage Your Symptoms and Take Control of Your Life

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The Woman's Fibromyalgia Toolkit: Manage Your Symptoms and Take Control of Your Life

The Woman's Fibromyalgia Toolkit tells readers what they need to know to take control of fibromyalgia symptoms. It includes step-by-step instructions for using effective non-drug treatments,...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.