ALTERNATIVE TREATMENTS FOR FYBROMYALGIA
From arthritis to tendinitis, there are alternative treatments that offer a natural way of dealing with the condition. Fybromyalgia syndrome is no different. Everyone knows that there are medicines available to combat the overall pain, fatigue, depression, and sleep problems, but many of these drugs come with a price. Often, there are side-effects. Sometimes a patient has an allergic reaction to the medicine. Other times, people who suffer with this condition really prefer a holistic approach to their symptoms. Whatever the reason, there are natural alternatives to assist the fybromyalgic sufferer in their quest for natural relief.
WHY CHOOSE AN ALTERNATIVE TREATMENT?
Of course, many people choose alternative treatments because of bad experiences with conventional medicine. However, others choose these forms based on the belief that the body has the power to heal itself with many techniques that involve the body, mind, and spirit. I will note that before trying any of these techniques, consult with your doctor to formulate a plan that would be beneficial to you. Not all these techniques will work for you. Only you and your physician can determine which ones would prove beneficial.
With acupuncture, a practitioner inserts one of more dry needles into the skin and underlying tissues at specific point. Gently twisting or manipulating the needles causes a release of endorphins into the bloodstream. Also, energy blocks are removed. Furthermore, acupuncture may alter brain chemistry. A small study was conducted using acupuncture on patients suffering from fybromyalgia. The results included a decrease in pain and an increase in quality of life for these trial patients. One treatment in some patients caused decreased pain symptoms that would last for weeks. However, more studies must be done to confirm these results.
How can chiropractic medicine help a fybromyalgic patient? Well, let’s think about what chiropractic treatments do for the body. People use these alternative treatments to treat many forms of pain, back pain, neck pain, pain of pressure points, headache pain, shoulder pain, the list goes on. The reason chiropractic treatments help fybromyalgia patients is because it improves pain levels and increases cervical and lumbar ranges of motion.
Like many alternative treatments, chiropractic medicine is based on the idea that the body is a self-healing organism. In this treatment, a doctor of chiropractic uses spinal adjustments. The goal is to adjust spinal vertebrae that have become stiff, locked, or out of whack. To do this, chiropractors use hand adjustments. Through many gentle movements in an area, or fast-paced thrusts, the adjustments are meant to return the bones to a more normal position in the body. As a result, pain levels go down and better life situations occur.
MASSAGE AND FYBROMYALGIA
Everyone loves a massage now and then. Can you imagine how message helps with fybromyalgia? In Swedish massage, the practitioner applies long strokes, kneading, and friction techniques to the superficial layers of the muscles. Also, the massage is combined with active and passive movements of the joints. Oil is used to enable the stroking and kneading, thereby improving blood circulation. With Swedish massage, the therapist rubs the muscles in the same direction of the blood flow going back to the heart.
Deep-tissue massage is another massage that has great benefits. With this type massage, the therapist uses greater pressure than what is used in Swedish massage. By doing this, they target the deep layers of the muscles. This deeper pressure helps release muscle tension, thus relieving pain.
Neuromuscular massage combines the ancient Oriental treatments like acupuncture, with specific deep-tissue massage. The goal is to reduce chronic muscle pain.
Massage is one of the most widely used alternative treatments for fybromyalgia patients. Results from massage show a reduced level of pain, mood improvement, and overall better quality of life.
BIOFEEDBACK AND FYBROMYALGIA
The use of biofeedback with fybromyalgic patients has been to reduce stress levels. The idea behind biofeedback is if people learn information about their body’s internal processes, they can use that information to control those processes. There have been several studies using biofeedback to alleviate chronic pain in individuals with good success.
With biofeedback, the patient is hooked up to a machine that measures the stress level of the body and lets you and your doctor know when you are physically relaxing the body. The instrument magnifies signals that might have gone unnoticed. As a result, you can use this information to learn how to control certain bodily functions. The real goal is to be able to use this information when you are away from the doctor in real life stressful situations. In recent studies, biofeedback has been shown to reduce point sensitivities and improve overall function of patients with fybromyalgia.
Well, these are just a few of the many alternative treatments available for those who suffer from fybromyalgia. I hope that if you are one of these sufferers, you will give some of these techniques a try. Who knows, you may be able to find relief without all the drug-based treatments.