Chronic illnesses, such as fibromyalgia, are often related to emotional difficulties. For some people, living with frequent and seemingly endless pain and other symptoms can cause emotional distress, manifesting as depression or anxiety. Additionally, some chronic illnesses can be almost invisible, leading to further feelings of isolation and fear of not being taken seriously. It can be important to talk to someone who does take these symptoms seriously, and to be able to explore the impact which illness has on daily life.
There is lots of evidence that emotional distress can also cause chronic physical illness. From infancy, the experiences which we have set up chemical responses in our bodies. For example, the sudden fear we might feel at a dog barking at us causes a surge of adrenalin, which is vital if we need to run away from danger. The problems occur when those chemical responses carry on long after the events which triggered them, leaving us constantly stressed, unable to relax and exhausted. In this situation the chemicals which were vital when we were in danger can become toxic, ultimately causing physical illness. Sometimes resolving emotional distress can help to change these patterns and relieve physical symptoms.
If you are suffering with fibromyalgia or other chronic illness, feel free to contact me to talk more about how psychotherapy might help.