Formication and Fibromyalgia – Causes & Treatment

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What’s the most annoying thing about fibromyalgia? Is it the constant pain? Or the exhaustion that makes it unfeasible to do even the most essential responsibilities? Maybe it’s the fibro-fog that leaves you forgetting where you left your keys every morning. Fibromyalgia has a seemingly endless supply of those little knock-on symptoms that all compete for the title of “worst element of the disease.”  

But despite the consequences of which one you come to a decision on, you have to confess that formication is a strong candidate for that label. Formication is found among people with Fibromyalgia, especially for people who are female, 50-59 old, take medication Lyrica and have Pain. Formication is the sensation of insects crawling across or beneath your skin. The name comes from the Latin word “formica,” which means ant.

Formication is often reported in people with mental health or substance misuse problems (predominantly methamphetamine users). So obviously, there’s something going on with the brain. But obviously, you don’t have to use drugs to experience it since formication is what’s called a tactile hallucination and can affect almost anyone.

Formication and fibromyalgia

Formication is known as a type of paresthesia. Paresthesia happens when you feel sensations on your skin that don’t have a physical cause. Paresthesia can take many forms. These can include burning, tingling, or numbness. Formication is also called a tactile hallucination.

This means that you’re feeling a sensation that has no physical cause. This delusion or phantasm that ants or other insects are creeping on or beneath the skin is a widespread side effect of extensive use of cocaine, amphetamines (“amphetamines”), or crystal meth. Formication is also a side effect of many prescription drugs. But still if you’re renowned with the symptoms of formication, may be you are not familiar with its actual name before.

You likely know what it is though: bugs under the skin. It’s a feeling like there is something crawling under your skin that you can’t scratch away. So what accurately causes it, why is it so frequent in people with fibromyalgia, and what can you do to take care of it? But what we do know is that formication can be a very serious problem.

People who undergo it habitually scrape or pick at their skin while trying to find some aid from the infuriating feeling of having bugs crawling beneath their skin. This results in horrible scarring or infections from open wounds. And the feeling can make it hard to sleep, which results in all the common fitness problems caused by sleep deficiency from diabetes to high blood pressure. Formication can be a symptom of both prescription and recreational drug use. Withdrawal after stopping use of certain drugs can also cause formication.

In many situations, formication is mainly frequent at night. Formication symptoms are similar to those of scabies. This condition happens when tiny mites burrow into your skin and lay eggs. It’s vital for your doctor to recognize symptoms that may show that no real insects are causing your symptoms.

Fibromyalgia sufferers often deal with other nervous system problems like irritable bowel syndrome or chronic itching. So with an obvious connection between all of these diverse nerve system disorders and fibromyalgia, it seems like the pain of fibromyalgia might in fact be fixed in the nerves. Usually, your nervous system sends signals to the brain, which in turn interprets these signals.

For example, if you feel a hot oven your nerves fire a signal that your finger tips are being overcooked which your brain then interprets as pain and registers as happening in your fingertips. So it seems likely that the fact that people with fibromyalgia deal with sympathetic nervous system disorders like formication so often is due to these malfunctions in the nervous system.

We don’t yet know for certain that this is true, and won’t until we understand what causes fibromyalgia or even just what causes formication, but this seems like a fairly solid explanation at the moment based on what we do know.

Treatment

Treatment for formication depends on the cause. A long-term treatment plan may be necessary for fibromyalgia, diabetes, or Parkinson’s disease to manage symptoms and complications. Radiation treatment may be effectual for treating formication occurred by skin cancer.

Rehabilitation treatment can help you address addiction to drugs like cocaine or meth. Rehabilitation can also help you manage formication as a withdrawal symptom during your recovery from drug use. Many support groups for drug addiction exist.

These can provide you with a community to share your experiences with as you cease drug use. If formication is caused by using prescription or recreational drugs, quitting that drug may help stop the sensation completely. However, don’t stop using a prescription drug without first consulting your doctor. They may recommend an alternative medication that doesn’t cause formication in case you need that type of medication for another condition.

Complications

Complications from untreated conditions that cause formication, such as diabetic neuropathy or Lyme disease and fibromyalgia include cuts and wounds that heal slowly, loss of sensation, ulcers and abscesses, meningitis and kidney disease. Formication caused by neurological conditions or the use of psychoactive substances like ecstasy can lead to delusional parasitosis. This occurs when you consider that real insects are crawling on you.

Also Read:

Skin Issues related to Fibromyalgia

References:

  • Formication and Fibromyalgia: Bugs Under Your Skin by Wyat Redd via Fibromyalgia Treating
  • What is formication and what causes it? via Quora

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