Herbal Remedies for Fibromyalgia
Long before modern-day medication and doctors and scientists, people used what they could find in nature to alleviate aches and pains. Herbs were the main source for pain relief. Just because modern science has brought in a plethora of treatment options, doesn’t mean that the benefits or effectiveness of those natural remedies have changed in any way. When struggling with debilitating pain caused by fibromyalgia, you want to be able to find the most effective treatment option for your specific needs. Fibromyalgia often causes severe fatigue, so you must be careful when selecting a treatment option to ensure that it doesn’t exacerbate fatigue symptoms. Fibromyalgia can also be accompanied by a number of other symptoms such as: muscle spasms, insomnia, difficulty concentrating, jaw stiffness, headaches or migraines, sensitivities to light, sound or even smells, irritable bowel syndrome, incontinence, and swelling. The use of herbal remedies can be utilized to alleviate many of these discomforts in an effort to make your day more manageable.
When considering the use of herbs for your treatment of fibromyalgia pain, it is important to know that herbal remedies do work at a slower rate than prescription-strength medication, so results will take time to be seen. Even though herbs are natural, you should consider them a drug and take them according to package instructions. Natural treatments can still result in adverse side effects and discomfort, if not taken appropriately. Additionally, it is important to know that the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate the process or making of supplements, so you need to be sure to select a well-known brand to ensure that what you are buying is actually what you are getting. In addition to adding the herbal supplements listed below to your routine, it is important to maintain a well-balanced diet in an effort to meet all of your nutritional needs. The old adage is true, “You are what you eat!” You can’t bring about pain relief if you aren’t providing your body with the tools it needs to stay strong. Below are a few herbal remedies that have been found to successfully treat fibromyalgia and many of its accompanying symptoms.
Chamomile: is a calming herb that can help the body relax and achieve a deeper and more restful night’s sleep. It is also a wonderful immune booster.
Cayenne: is used to alleviate headaches and can also be used for muscle pain when made into an ointment.
Ginger: is a wonderful support for calming an upset stomach. It is also believed to have anti-inflammatory properties.
Goldenseal: reduces inflammation and used to detoxify the body. Not intended for long term use, do not use any longer than one month.
Lavender: wonderful aromatherapy benefits. Helps alleviate sleep issues, depression and calm headaches. Scent is simply inhaled for maximum benefit.
Pine Bark: improves circulation and reduces inflammation
Passionflower: helps reduce symptoms of insomnia, stress, and anxiety
St John’s Wort: Used for treating mild depression and reducing mood swings with little to no side effects. You must be careful to not spend significant amount of time in the sun, as there is an increased risk of skin damage when taking St John’s Wort. Do not take St John’s Wort if you are already taking any type of antidepressant medication.
Ginseng: has been found to improve energy levels and reduce stress. Ginseng can reduce the effectiveness of other medication, so be sure to consult your physician before using. Additionally, purchase a Panax Ginseng with ginsenocides of about 10%, this will ensure that it is a good quality supplement and that it will be adequately absorbed into the body.
Proceed With Caution
If you are considering the use of herbal remedies, talk with your doctor before making any changes to your current treatment plan. Some supplements, even herbs, can create harmful side effects when interacting with prescription medication. Some herbs are considered unsafe if you have certain health conditions. Herbs differ from drugs, as little to no research has been done regarding their effectiveness or potential side effects. Proceed with caution and with the support and direction of your physician. If your current physician is not comfortable with the use of herbal remedies, you might want to seek the support of another physician that is well-versed in herbal treatments.