Examining the Link Between Fibromyalgia and Suicide

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Fibromyalgia and suicide. It’s one of the main ways that fibromyalgia is fatal, as depression and anxiety are often present in fibromyalgia patients.

Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain condition that affects the muscles and tissues of the body, causing them to ache and become stiff. This pain can range from moderate to severe, and can cause pain and aches all over the body. This pain can be debilitating, and can cause people to become lonely, anxious and depressed. People with fibromyalgia suffer from pain that can be so bad, they do not want to leave their bed or even get dressed in the morning.  This is terribly sad, as people often begin to feel despair and loneliness. Which means there can be a higher coincidence of fibromyalgia and suicide, as in some cases, people with fibromyalgia lose the will to live, as their depression becomes more and more severe.

Fibromyalgia and suicide

Although pain of fibromyalgia may bring great suffering to people- both mentally and physically- people need to work hard to maintain optimism and positive outlook. It is important to maintain as regular a schedule as possible, even if this schedule only takes place in the house and in the front or backyard of a person’s home.

This routine could be simple, including beginning the morning with a warm bath to loosen muscles, eating healthy meals, spending some time outside, and taking time to socialize with others. Maintaining a routine can take some of the exhaustion out of the day, as surprises and activities can be overwhelming for those who have fibromyalgia and are in a great amount of pain. People can have flare-ups that occur at any time, and therefore need to be prepared for their course of action if a flare-up should occur.  Maintaining a regular schedule as much as possible can help reduce fatigue.

Extreme fatigue is a symptom of fibromyalgia that can be debilitating.  This fatigue gets worse as sleeping gets more difficult due to pain. People who are very tired and not rested will have a difficult time waking up in the morning and carrying on with their day.

But this is why maintaining a schedule is so important- because tiredness is hard to kick. Waking up and going to bed at the same time can help, as can taking multiple breaks throughout the day to relax and recharge.

There are many different ways people choose to relax- they may listen to music, create art, play with a pet, or others. It is only important that a person identifies what relaxes them and brings them joy- and then do that activity as much as possible. It is important to maintain interests and hobbies, especially those that can be done at home or close to home.

Some people are naturally more social than others, and for these very social beings, it can be extremely difficult to deal with the pains of fibromyalgia and still maintain their very active social life.

But just because it is more difficult does not at all mean it is impossible.  People who are naturally social need to maintain social activities in order to keep their spirits up. Being around others is energizing for social people and cutting others off because of pain will be more harmful in the end. Having social activities nearby one’s house can be very beneficial.

If there is a restaurant nearby that a person enjoys, they should try to go there once or more a month, just to be in the world and around others, in an energetic environment. The same is true of people who love music, and enjoy seeing concerts and other live events.

Even though it may seem like the pain is too much to bear, it can be even worse to stay home in bed alone for days, weeks, and months on end. This is when depression strikes, and this is definitely not a place anyone wants to end up. It can be difficult to gain any energy to get out and participate in activities, but it is definitely possible and very beneficial.

If getting out of the house seems overwhelming, it is just as fair to invite a close friend over to the house for an hour or two, just to catch up and chat.

Speaking with friends and family, and maintaining regular positive contact is not only beneficial for those dealing with chronic pain, but is also necessary. It can be difficult to stay positive when experiencing so much pain, but people need to focus on maintaining positivity in their lives in whatever brings them happiness and joy.

Some people may enjoy socializing, while others may enjoy cooking, reading, listening to music, or millions of other things.  The most important thing to do is to continuously bring joyful activities into one’s life.

What are you suggestions for preventing incidents of fibromyalgia and suicide? Let us know your thoughts on fibromyalgia and suicide in the comments.

Comments

comments

  • Leslie Snipes

    Every time I see an article that says “maintain a regular schedule”, I debate whether to blow my own brains out or hunt down the author and shoot them instead. I swear, “maintain a regular schedule” (meaning set bedtime, set wake time, set meal times, etc.), was and is the WORST, bar none, Fibro advice I have ever seen. Maybe it works for some but, for me, what works is being flexible and adapting to what my body is up for on a day to day basis instead of forcing it past its breaking point each and every day “maintaining a regular schedule”.

    By being flexible, I can have MUCH more in my life and accomplish more. The ONLY time it becomes difficult is when scheduling medical appointments because the medical “professionals” are the ones who absolutely refuse to accommodate our disability by showing a wee bit of understanding and flexibility. Oh, no, they insist we “maintain a regular schedule” that matches their work schedule so that we can be available when they are ready instead of them being available when needed.

    We’ll still miss appointments on our bad days and we’ll have more bad days when we take this kind of bad advice from them but, hey, what they heck, then they can blame us. Oh, well, they were going to do that anyway. So I choose to ignore their ignorant advice when my 20 years of living with Fibro advises me they are WRONG. Of course, they have good reason to give us poor advice. It keeps us ill, more ill than we need be.

  • Teresa Hoeschen

    How can I share this in Facebook?

  • MS

    I agree with Leslie. I feel like telling everyone, including my husband, “Don’t tell me how I feel! You don’t know…you don’t want to know….” Whenever I express how I am feeling…everyone thinks they know how I’m feeling and want to over ride it. And when I keep the pain to myself, everyone wants to step all over me. It’s a no win situation. They don’t seem to get the message, “Leave me alone! I’m in pain! Believe me! I’m in pain!” Don’t they get it? I’m in so much pain that I want to die! It is yet again another night of waking due to excruciating pain. It is 3:50 a.m. I am contemplating again if I should just kill myself already. No matter how often I tell the doctors of my pain and wanting some other help besides those I’m taking…they ignore my plea…I am not a drug seeking lunatic! I wouldn’t be asking if I didn’t need it! When I die, I vow to haunt everyone who ridiculed me when I was in pain and was asking for help.

    • Malina

      Please don’t kill yourself I’m a fibro sufferer too and also have myalgic encephalomyelitis, so I really do understand what you’re going through and I’ve been thinking to “do it” many times… To be completely honest, I don’t know what to say to convince you. I’m in pain right now and my tiredness is so heavy I feel like I’m suffocating and all I can think about is that I’m not gonna make it till tomorrow.. I’m not in a good mood, but still I want to be hopeful. I want to believe that we can all be strong enough to hold on till we finally win this battle against those f****** doctors, against society, against all the people that judged us and underestimated our pain and our everyday life struggle. Hold on MS I know how hard it is and that most of the time it doesn’t make any sense to keep going on. But hold on…

  • http://treatingfibromyalgia Joy Dvenport

    my name is Joy. It is hard to do what is asked of me. I live in Pa. and there is a health campus for those who suffer with fibro, chronic pain, plus another muscle pain syndrome.
    Been there, it gave me some tips I haven’t been able to implement. I went after I was revived after a serious attempt at suicide. How serious. After 9 year of about twenty two surgeries on my back, shoulder, hysterectomy, 2 eye surgeries and other proceedures, plus the fibro and other things I mentioned above my body was wracked with pain.
    So on the 28th of January this year I took a massive overdose. The pain i had been experiencing was over 15 on the chart of 1-10. My loving husband who has been devoted to me for thirty eight years found me.
    The medics told him I was dead, the first hospital did also, so did the second. My families trauma was probably more traumatic then I will ever know. After 12 hours God raised me up literally. Do I still have pain. You bet ya. But God who has been faithful all of my life to me, outdid Himself for me on that day. Twelve hours after I took a full bottle of xanax and 3/4 of a bottle of a vicoden.
    I spent ten days in a mental facility, which made me very grateful for what gifts God has given me. My pillow, bed, own shower and food. Peacefulness, quietness, my family, grandchildren. To be able to move around freely. Music, oh for these things, and so many others I am grateful for. I also as an agreement of my release see a psychologist.
    I am learning myself all over again. I have to learn to trust myself. After all I did this to myself. It’s a road I am learning to travel through the grace of God.
    As for meds. My husband has to be in control of the percocet I take occasionallyou doctors orders. No xanax, no vicoden, in the last six days I’ve come off of all sleeping meds. Ambien. Which my husband had to be in control of.
    I still have to take some things because of my thyroid, Lyrica for fibromyalgia and the other issues that ithe helps, plus an antidepressant. The point is, it is limited.
    My diet is not the best, I walk when I can, take some supplements, belive I’m here for a purpose greater then myself. Maybe just so some person or people read this and don’t do what I did.
    It is very rare when those who choose the path I did to be raised from the dead.
    Do I struggle with frustration , pain and when to push through of course.
    Today was extremely had for me to get out of bed, but I did. If that is the only thing I accomplish for today, so be it.
    I’ve learned to listen to that inner voice of God’s Spirit better.
    how hard is it for someone to be very social, in full time ministry, a singer of a praise team, active intimacy with my husband, an OCD person when it came to our home, my apperance, plus anumber avid gardener. Get the picture. I have struggled and still do, but depression, discourage feelings of defeat and a death wish are far from me.
    Instead I really only Jesus, kno wing that no matter what I’ve been through He went through more then me and I can talk to Him and He understands. Besides I can still move around, it’s not something that has immobIized me, I don’t have MS, CANCER. I have been given back my mind etc.
    You get the point by now I’m sure.
    don’t let your pride keep you from asking for help. Find the doctor that understands. Mine does. There out there. Keep looking until you find the help you need. Family and friends will help, so does your church family. If you don’t have one, find one. See if there is a fibromyalgia meeting for support in your area.. They get it. I also recommend the recovery bible, I think it’s a Niv. Check it out.
    I have empathy for all of you, and pray for the Strength of God to lift you, help you sleep and remember I get it. Blessings Joy

    • http://www.fibromyalgiatreating.com/fibromyalgia-and-suicide/ Sue

      Hi Joy!
      Sorry for all you have been through. May I ask where the clinic is in Pennsylvania? I had no idea one existed. Sue

    • Brenda

      Joy, thank you. Your name is my favorite word, but lately I do not feel joyful. I am the person you described. I, too, am in ministry and sing on praise team and the whole 9 yards…Fibromyalgia has taken the one place I love to be, church. I am too afraid to take my own life, but I have seizures that I don’t remember things I do or say and am frightened that I may do something hurtful to myself. I don’t take any drugs because my body is too sensitive an they make me ill. I am glad you are a survivor and that you have this story to tell. I feel less alone today because I read about myself in you. Thank you for sharing. Prayers will be lifted for you, I added you to my prayer list.

  • Patty T

    “Maybe just so some person or people read this and don’t do what I did” All I can say is someone did. Thank you Joy.

  • trace

    I understand everything you all are going through. Hard to get through day by day. This messes with your mind and body so much. I take nothing for it. No one wants to help. But i struggle thru it. You are all not alone

  • http://www.lymenet.org Robin

    Hi everyone – I went through fibro suffering and despair too for 25 years, and now I have an answer, hopefully for many others as well here – my fibromyalgia turned out to be Lyme disease, a bacterial infection I got from a tick bite in my foot just before my symptoms started. When I found out what it was, I took clindamycin antibiotics around the clock for a week and the pain went to ZERO! I continued taking it at lower dose for a couple more years and now take other anti-inflams like turmeric, etc. There are other antibiotics that people can take, too. Point being, no more suicidal feeings when we have some control back – ie when we know what we’re dealing with and can try remedies to see what works for us.

  • shan

    I deal with fibromyalgia pain everyday. When it feels like my bones are being crushed, or I feel like I am on fire, or I feel like I am being stabbed, I still push on. I try to go past my limits everyday. And there is plenty of days where I feel exhausted as hell. I don’t let fibromyalgia get me down physically or mentally. I push through it. I hope this gives inspiration to fibromyalgia suffers to be stronger and tougher than the rest.