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What Are the Fibromyalgia Tender Points? A Simple Guide

    More than 50 million adults live with chronic pain in the U.S. Some of the most common causes include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and multiple sclerosis.

    Another possibility is fibromyalgia. According to the ACPA, it affects up to 4% of the population—that’s over 12 million people!

    A disorder that affects the nervous system, it causes pain and tenderness in certain areas of the body called “tender points.” Where are they? How can you treat them?

    Keep reading to find out—we’ll be going over everything that you need to know about fibromyalgia tender points below.

    What is Fibromyalgia?

    Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition that’s characterized by widespread pain. Other symptoms include fatigue, tenderness, and difficulty sleeping.

    Depending on the severity, an individual may find it difficult to perform everyday activities such as walking or climbing stairs. In some cases, they may also experience “brain fog.”

    What Are Fibromyalgia Tender Points?

    Tender points are areas of pain that are located in clusters around the shoulder, neck, chest, hips, elbows, and knees. Generally speaking, they’re about the size of a penny.

    Located on both sides of the body, they’ll produce pain if you press down on them with your finger. In fact, that’s how the condition is diagnosed—a doctor will press down on various areas to test for tenderness.

    Treating Painful Trigger Points

    There are various fibromyalgia treatment options available. Here are some of them.


    Trigger point injections can be effective at reducing pain. Basically, a doctor will inject medication such as a local anesthetic or corticosteroid directly into the tender points.

    While most people will experience immediate pain relief, some may have to wait several days for their pain to improve.

    Acupuncture Therapy

    Acupuncture can help those who are suffering from fibromyalgia. How does it work?

    An acupuncturist will insert very fine needles into different points of your body. From there, they’ll be left in for 20-30 minutes before being removed.

    In most cases, symptoms will begin to improve within a few weeks.

    Massage Therapy

    Massage therapy is an effective treatment for fibromyalgia. For example, a connective tissue massage can help to lessen pain and increase an individual’s pain threshold.

    Manual lymph drainage therapy can also help by moving fluid away from blocked or damaged lymph vessels.

    Keep in mind, however, that not all massages are the same. Instead of going to your local spa, consider asking your doctor for recommendations.

    Home Remedies For Tender Point Pain

    There are a few things that you can do at home to help ease the pain. For example, you can put moist heat on your muscles—that will bring down any pain and stiffness.

    Getting enough sleep is important as well; you want to rest your body so that it’ll be able to repair itself.

    Understanding Fibromyalgia

    Now you know all about fibromyalgia tender points! While there’s no cure, there are ways to treat the pain—you just have to find out what works for you.

    For more health-related articles, check out the rest of our website!