How does fibromyalgia affect mood?

A patient with fibromyalgia needs professional psychological support to cope with the emotional discomfort generated by the disease. 


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Fibromyalgia is a disease of recent characterization that affects, above all, adults.  It causes fatigue , pain throughout the body and general malaise. In addition to the physical consequences, we will explain how the fibromyalgia affects the mood.

Factors that worsen mood

There are multiple factors that affect the mood of patients with fibromyalgia. In this section we will develop them, on the one hand those related to their daily life and on the other those related to the medical field.

A patient suffering from nonspecific discomfort and pain throughout the body can no longer function as he had been doing all his life. He feels that he can not carry out his tasks, whatever their nature. They suppose much more effort than before and they are much more difficult.

In addition, the cause of its occurrence is unknown , although it is suspected that it has to do with stress or with traumatic events that occurred in the past. It does not have an organic cause (physical and quantifiable), as the vast majority of diseases. For this reason, in the family and social environment, the daily symptoms of the disease tend to be underestimated.

As in any pathology, it is very important that the patient receives encouragement and support from those around him . That a patient is described as a complainant or receives comments like: nothing happens to you, it makes the process of the disease very difficult.

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At the medical level there are also obstacles, in the first instance at the time of diagnosis. The patient is embarrassed to go to the doctor to tell him that he does not know what’s wrong with him , that his whole body hurts. And it’s a blow for him to receive a diagnosis like this.

In the course of the disease, symptoms appear that primary care physicians are not entirely aware of. They do not identify them with anything and propose empirical treatments that are often ineffective .

Patients often resort to natural remedies. This generates a strong feeling of frustration and helplessness.

How does fibromyalgia affect mood?

Depending on various factors (personality, environment, ability to resilience) the affect of mood can occur in different ways:

1. Major depressive disorder

It is a serious and disabling alteration . The sick person is lacking in energy and willingness to do things (this is known as abulia). He feels sad, depressed and tending to cry .

His thinking becomes pessimistic, magnifies negative thoughts and suppresses positive ones . His language and movements slow down. She also presents anhedonia, that is, she is unable to enjoy the activities she used to enjoy. They sometimes tend to isolate themselves from their surroundings.

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2. Adjustment disorder with depressive mood

Depressed woman

The adjustment disorder appears when an adverse event arises (in this case fibromyalgia) that exceeds the capacity of adaptation of the person. It is not able to overcome this negative circumstance and that causes, in this case, depressive mood.

It should be noted that although there are patients diagnosed with dysthymia , not all of them present it.

3. Other affectations

Additionally, it is possible for a patient with fibromyalgia to experience the following:

  • Somatizations: due to the emotional discomfort generated by the disease, various symptoms and nonspecific ailments may occur, such as: headaches, pains in different parts of the body, upset stomach, and so on.
  • Anxiety crisis: in some moments the patient may experience small anxiety crises due to the anguish and discomfort generated by the pain and disability that this can produce.


A patient with fibromyalgia can feel distressed and depressed due to the consequences that pain can have in his daily life, preventing him from living a normal life in many cases. Therefore, it is important that you have professional psychological support to learn to manage negative emotions and thoughts and thus improve your quality of life at an emotional level.


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