The correlation between vitamin D and fibromyalgia is one that has been noted if not yet fully understood. Many physicians recognize that vitamin D deficiency can be a contributing factor to fibromyalgia, but not all of them understand whether the replenishing of vitamin D levels in the body can significantly improve a patient's symptoms of the condition. Despite this, research suggests that a link exists between vitamin D and fibromyalgia and that the restoration of adequate vitamin D levels in the body might lead to a reduction in pain, a decreased need for pain medications and improved overall health.
Research has indicated that there is a link between vitamin D and fibromyalgia. Low vitamin D levels have been correlated with the pain resulting from fibromyalgia and other associated chronic pain conditions. Findings suggest that many people who suffer from chronic pain take more pain medication than is necessary, because of their low vitamin D levels — in fact, patients who had good vitamin D levels required almost half the amount of pain medication compared to those who had low vitamin D levels. The research also proposed that patients who had less than optimal vitamin D levels were more likely to report worse physical functioning. These same patients reported a lower sense of general well-being than their vitamin D-optimized counterparts.
A good vitamin D level can improve the strength of the muscles and bones. A deficiency, however, can produce numerous health ailments in patients. Pain and problems with neuromuscular functioning, two possible symptoms of fibromyalgia, can result from a vitamin D deficiency.
Patients can benefit from seeing physicians who recognize a possible link between vitamin D and fibromyalgia. A physician who is willing to address deficiencies before prescribing pain medication might be able to naturally alleviate some of the symptoms associated with fibromyalgia. Patients can also avoid the risk of physical dependency on narcotic pain relievers if vitamin D replacement is successful.
Patients who are overweight are more at risk for diminishing vitamin D levels. These patients and those who are clinically obese can experience more pain, as with fibromyalgia, and pain in several different areas. Individuals who have dark skin and who are not regularly exposed to sunshine can also find themselves more susceptible to vitamin D deficiencies and fibromyalgia-like symptoms.
After a blood test has proved that there is a vitamin D deficiency, there are several ways that patients can increase their vitamin D levels. One method involves spending time outside, in the sunlight, either in the morning or in early afternoon. Fifteen minutes of sun exposure a day can be enough to kick-start vitamin D production in the body. Another method includes supplementation with vitamin D3, which is called cholecalciferol.