Bowen therapy is effective at relieving the pain associated with fibromyalgia because it works gently throught the nervous system rather than kneading muscle tissue or manipulating the skeletal system. This works well for fibromyalgia to reduce the immediate pain as well as reducing the frequency and severity of pain in future. Although not a cure for fibromyalgia, it is a very effective tool in managing the condition with relatively few treatments.
Although it afflicts between six and nine percent of the population, fibromyalgia is a medical condition that is not well understood. It is characterized by chronic pain throughout the body, weakness, and fatigue; and it most affects women. People with fibromyalgia are often treated with allopathic medication, but bowen therapy shows promise in dealing with this chronic health condition.
There is compelling research that bowen therapy may also be effective in relieving the painful symptoms of fibromyalgia:
In a study of twenty patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia, almost all participants experienced various degrees of relief which lasted from a few days to several weeks. Most reported immediate relief following a bowen treatment. For some, repeated bowen therapy maintained complete clinical remission. The results were statistically significant and correlated with improvement of clinical well-being.
Fibromyalgia Pilot Study
A second pilot study was undertaken to determine the effect of bowen treatments on fibromyalgia sufferers. All participants experienced improvement, including better sleep, ease in walking, cessation of vertigo, eased neck pain, improved balance and less exhaustion.
FIBROMYALGIA - A TESTIMONIAL
I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 2008, after suffering for 2 years with chronic pain and fatigue. Anyone with Fibro understands how difficult it is to find a treatment that works for most of the symptoms on a long terms basis. I had been for massages, which hurt so much afterwards and only really helped for about a week before the pain returned. I had tried yoga and lots of other things were supposed to help. One day I learned about something called Bowen, I looked it up when I returned home and although I was a little sceptical it sounded perfect. On my first appointment the therapist asked me questions about my health and the list of problems was long……I sounded like a helpless case! I didn’t know what to expect, but my first treatment was so relaxing. I was a little unsure how effective it would be as it was so gentle and I wasn’t sure it would help. I remember walking out of the clinic like a zombie.At first I was having treatments every week, then every two, then less frequently, I now go about 6 weeks between treatments. After the first few weeks I was amazed that my levels of pain had dropped by about 50%, at first I thought it was maybe a coincidence, and maybe I was just going through a good spell, but almost 10 months later, I swear by it. My initial list of problems has been drastically reduced, and the pain, although still niggling is not as harsh and severe as it was before Bowen. I have taken leaflets to my doctor’s office for them to recommend it to other sufferers, and tell everyone how amazing it is. It doesn’t cure fibromyalgia, I don’t think anything will, but it makes your body the best it can be. My testimonial could go on forever as I think it is a wonderful treatment, but my best advice to anyone would be to just try it for themselves.
Resetting the Nervous and Musculoskeletal Systems with Bowen Therapy
The treatment addresses the relationship between the muscles and the nervous system, a key aspect in fibromyalgia, by challenging the muscle at the point where the nerves connect with it. The practitioner makes a movement perpendicular to the fibers of the muscle, and then pauses to allow the movement to be processed by the nervous system. This allows the brain to respond to the muscle with a message to return to its “default” position; for example, if the muscle has been contracted, the message from the brain will instruct the muscle to relax. By causing the muscle to relax, the movement releases any nerves that have been under pressure, in turn relieving pain. Then, the treatment continues with movements along the middle and upper back, the shoulders, and the neck. These movements cover most of the 18 tender points used in diagnosing fibromyalgia.
What is Fibromyalgia?
People who are eventually diagnosed with fibromyalgia may have spent years visiting doctors and undergoing inconclusive tests. The most effective test for diagnosing the condition involves pressing 18 points on the body and determining how much pain the pressure causes. In an average person, the pressure will be slight and the pain, if any, will be mild. In a person with fibromyalgia, however, the application of pressure to these points causes intense pain. The traditional diagnosis of fibromyalgia required that a person should exhibit pain in at least 11 of the 18 points and have experienced widespread pain for at least three months for a diagnosis of fibromyalgia to be made. However, many people have been diagnosed based on less than 11 points as long as they have other symptoms, such as sleep problems, fatigue, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), headaches, temporomandibular pain (pain in the jaw joint known as TMJ), and cognitive or memory impairments. Many fibromyalgia sufferers report being more sensitive to light, sound, touch, and smell than non-sufferers.Although long thought to be an inflammatory illness like arthritis, fibromyalgia has recently been recognized as a neurological condition that involves the body’s inability to process pain correctly. People with fibromyalgia have three or four times more of a particular pain neurotransmitter (Substance P) than non-sufferers do.The combination of chronic, all-over pain and fatigue often leads to depression. As a result, some fibromyalgia patients are treated with allopathic antidepressant medications, such as Cymbalta. Lyrica (pregabalin), which is also prescribed for shingles, seizures, and pain from damaged nerves, has been effective for some fibromyalgia patients, but it causes a variety of side effects, including blurry vision, edema, and sperm damage. It is the first medication approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of fibromyalgia. People of all ages and both sexes can suffer from fibromyalgia, although more women experience the condition than men. People with relatives who have fibromyalgia may be more likely to develop it. It manifests in early to middle adulthood, but it has also been found in children. People with rheumatic diseases, such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis, are more likely to develop fibromyalgia than are people who do not.
Bowen therapy can be quite effective in alleviating the symptoms of fibromyalgia and improving sleep and mood.
University Pain Clinic
& Wellness Centre
Fibromyalgia Treatment Specialists
Kitchener Waterloo Cambridge