Shandra Smith, photo taken by Laryn Gilmour

West Kelowna woman speaks on how fibromyalgia changed her life

May 12 is fibromyalgia awareness day

A West Kelowna mother is speaking out about her daily struggle with fibromyalgia, just ahead of World Fibromyalgia Awareness Day this Sunday.

“I deal with a chronic pain condition, a lot of people don’t know about because it is an invisible condition that causes pain in your muscles, stiffness and pain in your joints,” said Shandra Smith. “I’m an artist, mother and wife and some days I have very limited energy to do the things I need to do and others I will be okay.”

READ MORE: Major grant bolsters Penticton doctors research on pain

Smith said researchers think it is something in the brain that amplifies the pain signal in the brain. She said it can be difficult to open doors and walking up stairs.

“I have had a few instances where people didn’t understand and got angry with me for walking slow or having to press the button to open the door because I couldn’t myself. This is an invisible disease so most people don’t know what’s wrong and that is why I want to draw awareness of fibromyalgia,” Smith said.

READ MORE: Kelowna woman turns tough situation into business opportunity

Fibromyalgia syndrome affects the muscles and soft tissue. Some of the symptoms chronic muscle pain, fatigue, sleep problems, and painful tender points or trigger points, which can be relieved through medications, lifestyle changes and stress management.

Smith said she is on Lyrica for the pain, but she tries to stick with natural pain relievers and changes to her lifestyle to deal with the aches.


@LarynGilmour
laryn.gilmour@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

PPC party discredits its former Kelowna-Lake Country president’s past accusations of racism

Daniel Joseph left the party in March and is now an independent candidate in the riding

Vipers get past Penticton Vees in overtime

After a slow start to the season the Vipers are now on a four-game win streak

Vernon’s best in business awarded for excellence

The Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce announced winners of this year’s Business Excellence Awards

Vernon students to sell breakfast bags for dry grad

W.L. Seaton’s dry grad breakfast fundraiser takes place next Wednesday morning at 4512 27 Street

Proposal for 30 affordable housing units in Vernon moves ahead

Vernon city council approved an early stage in the CMHA’s proposal at ther last meeting on Oct. 15

ELECTION 2019: It’s so close, it could come down to who turns out to vote

Black Press Media’s polling analyst on the origins of predictive seat modelling in Canada

Hundreds turn out for Singh, NDP candidate rally in Penticton

The messaging was clear, NDP “chooses you”

Summerland holds multiple events to launch festive season

Festival of Lights, Light Up the Vines and Sip ’n’ Shop will be held in late November and December

PET OF THE WEEK: Moose still needs a home

Critteraid cat wants a nice, quiet environment

Jack’s Devils beat Quinn’s Canucks 1-0 in NHL brother battle

New Jersey youngster scores first career goal against Vancouver

Penticton Vees to host 2021 Centennial Cup

It’s the first time Penticton has hosted the tournament which decides the country’s Junior A champions

Two charged after owner’s wild ride through Kamloops in his stolen truck

Crystal Rae Dorrington, 37, and Derrick Ronald Pearson, 32, facing multiple charges

Judge orders credit union’s bank records for Kelowna social worker facing theft allegations

The man is accused of negligence, breach of contract, fraud and a conspiracy with Interior Savings

Leaders pour it on with rallies, boosts for candidates as campaign reaches peak

The federal election campaign has reached a crescendo

Most Read