Fibromyalgia Sufferers Can Just Say No
Fibromyalgia is chronic disorder that affects one in every fifty people. Majority of those affected are females of child bearing age. The symptoms of fibromyalgia include:
- Chronic fatigue
- Sleep disorders
- Unexplained widespread pain throughout the muscles
- Achy joints with no signs of swelling
- Skin rashes
- Memory problem
- Inability to focus
- Pelvic pain
Experts are still learning about this condition so treatment options are very experimental at best. The use of prescription drugs on a trial and error basis is often an undesirable option to people with FMS. Prescription drugs that have been used to treat fibromyalgia symptoms have been from the antidepressant/anti-anxiety category or those in the pain killer category. The mounting side effects can be quite risky and some of the drugs used to treat fibromyalgia can be habit forming and extremely difficult to come off if they are determined to be ineffective. These are not the type of drugs you want to just “try and see if they work”. There is good news for those diagnosed with fibromyalgia wishing to stay away from prescription medications. There are plenty of natural alternatives available that do not run the same risks.
Natural Anxiety Fighters
There are herbal supplements that have little to no side effects available for those who suffer with this difficult symptom. Take valerian for instance. Valerian root is an herb that has been used for centuries to treat anxiety, insomnia and digestive problems. Valerian has a sedative effect and can help fight anxiety but ideally should be taken before bed due to its strength. Another herb that successfully treats anxiety, but does not cause drowsiness, is passionflower. Passionflower helps in mood stability and protects the body from emotional highs and lows. It takes the edge off of stressful situations helping you feel well balanced. Kava Kava is an herb used to treat depression and insomnia. It is very powerful sedative so you should not drive or operate heavy machinery when using it. Although these are natural alternatives that are not addictive, they can interact with medication so it is important to discuss them with your doctor before taking them.
“Fibrofog” is the term used to describe the extreme fatigue, poor memory, and lack of focus that comes with fibromyalgia. There are natural ways to give your energy a boost without the negative impacts that caffeine and sugar bring. Caffeine and sugar should be avoided for those with fibromyalgia. Caffeine induces the “fight or flight” response and drains the adrenals leaving them depleted which is where the caffeine crash comes from. As people feel that crash they reach for more caffeine and it is this cycle that becomes harmful to fibromyalgia. Low energy levels can be dealt with through healthy food choices and the use of herbs. Herbal supplements like Siberian Ginseng, Ashwaganda, and Gotu Kola are all beneficial energizing herbs that can be purchased in capsule or tea form at most local health food stores. For mental clarity and help with focusing, it is good to eat foods that have plenty of Omega 3 Fatty Acids. Omega 3 is brain food and can be found in fish, flax seed, radishes, and nuts. Adding these foods to your diet can help shake those pesky cob webs that come with fibrofog. If these foods do not sound appealing you can easily find omega 3 supplements in virtually any grocery or drug store.
Simple Ways To Reduce Pain
Achy joints, stiffness and muscle pain comes with the territory when dealing with fibromyalgia. Often times these symptoms make it difficult to even get out of bed in the morning. Some helpful ways to reduce muscle aches and stiffness is to incorporate morning and night time stretching to your routine. Take 15 minutes both in the a.m. and p.m. to stretch the muscles. This will release tension that builds up rather quickly for those who have fibromyalgia. Take frequent baths if possible to keep the muscles loose. Eating foods that are rich in magnesium, or supplementing magnesium, will help ease muscle pain as well. There has been extensive research on the use of magnesium to treat nerve and muscles pain and doctors use magnesium in certain medical treatments. Magnesium has been used to treat migraines, premature labor, and muscle spasms. Cayenne pepper is a wonderful spice to add to your meals for its anti-inflammatory qualities. Other herbs that have pain reducing properties are; turmeric, ginger, and guggul. All of these have been used successfully to treat pain with fibromyalgia. The list of fibromyalgia symptoms is long but you can fight back naturally and avoid the harmful effects that prescription drugs have on the body.