Tips for Fibromyalgia Management and Everyday Life
Fibromyalgia was long thought to be a psychosomatic condition that is not treatable with any known conventional therapies. However, recent medical advancement has proven not only the existence of the chronic pain disorder, but that it affects millions more people worldwide than doctors could have anticipated. If you are diagnosed with fibromyalgia, it isn't the end of life as you know it. There are several things you can do to ensure you are able to live a full active, pain-free lifestyle.
Experts recently polled people suffering with fibromyalgia from around the country to see what advice they could give to other people coping with this disorder. Here are the top tips for fibromyalgia management.
Get a Good Night's Rest
One of the top pieces of advice they had to give was the importance of getting a good night's rest. This can be difficult when symptoms tend to be at their worst at night, but sleep is when the body's hormones level out.
Rather than avoiding sleep at night, try to make the best of it. Resist napping in the middle of the day as this can lower the quality of your night time sleep. Make sure the temperature in your bedroom is at optimal levels for sleep, around 65 degrees. This may seem chilly, but studies have shown that the human body gets the best quality of sleep at this temperature.
Be Sure to Exercise
Exercise topped every person's list of fibromyalgia remedies as well. The chronic pain of the disorder keeps people from exercising; however, by moving your muscles and joints, you can ensure ease of movement, which usually provides a significant lessening of chronic pain over time.
Exercise will also help you stay trim. Obesity can worsen fibromyalgia's symptoms, so managing a healthy weight can help keep the pain at low levels. People who reduce or eliminate physical activity from their lifestyle experience a loss of mobility which leads to intense joint pain.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Eating a healthy diet may seem like a no-brainer, but it takes truly clean eating to lessen the pain of chronic pain disorders. Chemicals in artificial sweeteners, flavor enhancers, and preservatives have been linked to fibromyalgia-like symptoms.
Eating low-fat, high protein foods can promote elevated energy levels. It takes a strong will to truly eat for health, but the difference in your pain levels over time can be drastic enough to justify such a strict diet.
Another popular piece of advice for coping with chronic pain is to pace yourself. If you are accustomed to a high energy lifestyle, it can be hard to accept your new limitations when you are given a diagnosis of fibromyalgia. You will over exert yourself physically and pay dearly for it in joint and muscle pain later down the road.
Be honest with yourself about your new limits and take physical activity slow and easy to start out. You can gradually increase your activity levels to lead a life similar to the one you lead before your chronic pain, but only if you take it easy when needed.
Don't Give Up
Most importantly, don't give up after every bad day. There will be times when your pain is off the charts no matter what precautions you take. This does not mean that sleep, eating right and exercising are not working — it means you have a condition that has its ups and downs.
Find a way to cope with your chronic pain in a positive way. There are fibromyalgia support groups you can attend, or online forums to learn more about your condition. Use your family and friends for the help you need. Living with chronic pain requires a few modifications from what used to be 'normal' but you can still live a complete life.