Fibromyalgia can cause widespread aches and pains, which cause patients to remain inactive — which tends to worsen their stiffness and depression. It's easy to get caught in this cycle of symptoms, and to break free, you really need to start by addressing the pain. Taking over-the-counter pain relievers can help, but it's just one step. Here are some other tactics you can use for pain management.
When you're in pain, the mere idea of exercising may seem overwhelming. However, if you can manage to do some gentle stretches, you will likely find that your pain eases up. Fibromyalgia pain is often linked to tight muscles, and stretching loosens the muscles. You can do some basic stretches from a seated position. Simply sit with your legs in front of you, and reach between your feet. Then, fold one leg under you, and lean to one side and then the other to stretch your sides and back. If you feel a little better after this, then you can stand up and do some more stretching from a standing position. This does not have to be complicated; touch your toes, bend to either side, and twist your back.
Soak in Epsom Salts
This is another good pain management strategy for days when you truly don't feel like doing anything. If you can manage to fill a tub with warm water and stir in about a cup of Epsom salts, then all you need to do is lower yourself into the bath and soak for 20 minutes. You'll emerge from the bath feeling so much looser and more relaxed. The magnesium in the Epsom salts helps relax your muscles, stop spasms in their tracks, and also reset your mood — and resetting your mood often eases the pain.
You may also benefit from making a weekly or monthly appointment with an acupuncturist. This type of practitioner will insert tiny needles into your skin. You'll barely feel a thing when they go in, but they will work to re-direct and stop certain nerve impulses related to pain. Make sure you tell your acupuncturist that you have fibromyalgia and explain where your pain is the most serious. This will help guide them towards the best places to put the needles.
Fibromyalgia pain often demands a multi-faceted management approach. Through stretching, Epsom salt baths, and a few visits to an acupuncturist, you can stay more comfortable and break through the uncomfortable cycle of symptoms.