Fibromyalgia study on #Pain and the #Brain

Once the pain was applied, however, people with fibromyalgia had increased connectivity between part of the somatosensory cortex and the anterior insula. The somatosensory cortex is the area that receives information about physical sensation, such as pain, from the nerves and spinal cord. The anterior insula deals with autonomic information (the automatic functions of your body) and assigns importance to them, thus telling your brain what to pay attention to.
This suggests that in fibromyalgia, our brains assign higher importance and prominence to pain.

It's not that we're "making a big deal" out of it, as in over-reacting. We're subject to a physiological emphasis in our brains.

Think of it like this: It's the difference between when your toddler calls for you and when he shrieks for you; or the difference between hearing a phone ring in the middle of the afternoon and responding calmly vs. it ringing in the middle of the night, yanking you out of sleep in a panic because something must be horribly wrong for someone to call you at that hour.

I can certainly relate to the difference. My fibromyalgia is in remission, but I'm still in significant pain because I've developed arthritis. I remember how fibromyalgia pain seemed insistent and made it difficult or even impossible to focus on anything else. The pain I have now often hurts just as bad, but it's a lot easier for me to tune out.

Researchers also say this study suggests pain, pain catastrophizing, autonomic dysfunction, and pain amplification in us are all linked to this increased connectivity.About |Health

"Has anyone ever told you it seemed like you were obsessed with your pain? It's a fairly common thing for those of us with fibromyalgia to hear. Doctors use the term catastrophizing, meaning that we treat pain as a"About |Health  Well, no, but the term catastrophizing comes up often with FM and chronic pain. I always wonder about that. Am I doing that? Or is it the nature of pain? Perhaps... it is the nature of FM pain.

It is our brain putting some extreme emphasis on the pain. Feel me. Pay attention to me. Focus on me. In other words FM pain is a very demanding and insistent pain. Not easy to ignore.

Oddly enough I find this to be true with flare ups but not so much with my baseline. I notice it. The pain is always there and I am aware of it. But I find migraines to be more persistent, insistent and demanding pain wise. I have a harder time thinking through them and ignoring them. Of course, that might be because I have FM... and it affects how I feel all pain.

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