Is there connection between fibromyalgia and Mold?

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Hidden allergies can play a significant role in chronic health complications. Mold is one of the most common ecological issues that disturbs people’s health and causes allergies. Toxic mold exposure has been linked to chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, lupus, asthma and other conditions. Mold can have a toxic effect on the human body as it yields harmful chemicals such as mycotoxin. The side effects of being exposed to toxic mold can range from circulatory damage to respiratory illnesses, and black mold is a common indoor air pollution issue. Patients report a variety of symptoms that comprise irritation, allergies, aches, pain, chronic illnesses, respiratory issues, and cognitive problems. We are sometimes asked if there is a link between fibromyalgia and mold. It is not a simple question and there is no simple answer. FM is a complicated condition and doctors do not all approve on its cause or on whether it is associated to mold. Let’s start by talking about the nature of FM.

What Is Fibromyalgia?

You may think that would be an easy question to answer, but it is not. It is a disorder considered by extensive muscle and joint pain along with chronic fatigue. Examiners think it is caused by changes in the way the brain develops pain signals, essentially intensifying painful sensations. Chemical changes in the brain also occur in people with the disorder. In addition to chronic pain and fatigue, the National FM and Chronic Pain Association says that symptoms of FM might comprise sleep headaches, disorders or migraines, trouble focused, dizziness, poor short-term memory, restless leg syndrome, depression and irritable bladder and bowel. Symptoms vary from person to person and may wax and wane. Doctors aren’t sure why some people develop fibromyalgia or what causes the condition. It’s believed there is a genetic component, since it seems to run in families. The onset of the disorder often seems to be triggered by illness, infection, or physical or emotional trauma. In this way it may be similar to a condition like cancer, in which there is a genetic predisposition to the illness but exposure to something like cigarette smoke can cause it to develop in those with the genetic predisposition. The condition can be quite debilitating. Some sufferers are unable to maintain employment and have to go on disability. Others may be able to work but might have to take frequent sick days. Fibromyalgia affects relationships and the ability to engage in social and leisure activities, too. About ten million Americans have FM. It affects more women than men, with about eighty percent of victims being female. It affects people of all ages, including children. There is no cure for fibromyalgia. It can be treated with medications that reduce the harshness of symptoms but symptoms can still be present and “flare ups” still happen.

Fibromyalgia and Mold Connection

Doctors don’t all approve the answer to this question. Most do agree that illness or infection occasionally seems to activate the onset of fibromyalgia. This may be most likely to happen when a genetic tendency to the situation already exists. A mold-related infection could be the activating illness. In people already analyzed with FM, a mold-related illness could make symptoms worse or cause a “flare up.” Some doctors feel the link is greater and ask all FM patients about likely exposure to mold, but not all agree. Those most likely to be seriously affected by exposure to mold include:

  • Elderly people
  • People with pre-existing respiratory disorders, such as asthma
  • Infants and small children
  • People taking medicines or undergoing medical procedures that can suppress the immune system, like those undergoing chemotherapy or those who have had an organ transplant
  • People with disorders affecting the immune system, like HIV or AIDS

What Should You Do If You have Been Exposed to Fibromyalgia and Mold Symptoms Develop or Worsen?

If you have FM and find mold in your home, you have to be aware that exposure to mold may make your symptoms worse. It will be best to have the mold removed from your home immediately. We propose arranging for someone else to do the work for you in order to stop increased exposure to mold that may worsen your symptoms. If you do develop symptoms of mold-related illness, see your physician immediately. Your internist or primary care physician can treat most mold-related infections and can refer you to a professional, for instance a pulmonologist or a contagious disease specialist, if necessary. If you experience an increase in FM symptoms, see your rheumatologist or other physician that is handling you for that condition. If you have not been diagnosed with FM in the past but begin to develop symptoms of the disorder, see your doctor. Start with your internist or primary care physician, but you may be referred to a specialist, usually a rheumatologist, to confirm the analysis and treat the situation. There are no tests, like blood tests or x-rays, to analyze fibromyalgia and it can take some time to define the cause of your symptoms. Other situations with similar symptoms must be ruled out. Numerous medications have been accepted by the Food and Drug Administration for the cure of FM but it can take some time for those to reach a therapeutic level and begin to offer relief. Pain medications may also be required. Other treatments like massage therapy, physical therapy and acupuncture may provide further relief. Image result for Is there connection between fibromyalgia and Mold?

Restricting Exposure to Mold

Clearly, it is to your advantage to limit your exposure to mold as much as possible. Exposure to mold is not healthy for anyone, whether or not they have FM. If you do have FM, though, exposure to mold might be particularly harmful to you. If you have found mold in your home, you’ll need to have it removed immediately. References: Mold Health Problem via Mold Answers. Mold Exposure is linked with fibromyalgia via Emax Health  

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