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Fibromyalgia Treatments

While there is no known cure for FMS, there are many different treatments for fibromyalgia that can help you to be more active and comfortable, and minimize your pain.

Treatment for fibromyalgia will generally focus on reducing muscle pain and improving your sleep pattern. Exercise and physical therapy may also be helpful in reducing muscle pain and tension. Your doctor will work with you to develop a specific treatment plan, tailored to your condition and the severity of your symptoms of fibromyalgia. This may include a combination of medication, exercise, and physical therapy.

Drugs used for Fibromyalgia Treatments

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are generally not very helpful in treating the muscle pain associated with fibromyalgia. Small amounts of aspirin or ibuprofen may help to alleviate some of your muscle pain, however.

Because sleep is often affected and lack of sleep aggravates the neuromuscular symptoms of FMS, drugs may be given to promote deeper sleep, so that you can get as much rest as possible. These include amitriptyline, or elavil, and cyclobenzaprine, or flexeril. These are used in larger doses to treat depression, but your doctor will use them here to help you sleep and to help reduce some of your pain. These drugs can have unpleasant side effects, such as sometimes actually acting as stimulants, rather than promoting sleep. You should inform your doctor about any such side effects.

Certain classes of antidepressant medications are sometimes prescribed for the disorder. Studies show that antidepressants in low doses can decrease depression, relax craniofacial and skeletal muscles, improve sleep quality, and release pain-killing endorphins.

Exercise and Fibromyalgia Treatments

Exercise can be helpful in reducing muscle soreness. In addition to improving strength and circulation, exercise can help increase your range of motion. It is important to stretch thoroughly, both before and after exercise to keep your muscles loose. Generally, low-impact exercise, such as water aerobics or walking are recommended for patients with fibromyalgia.

Physical therapy modalities also can be helpful in alleviating your symptoms. Physical therapists may use massage, heat or cold, ultrasound, electrical stimulation, or any combination of the above, to help reduce your muscle soreness. In addition, physical or occupational therapists may work on your posture or gait to help improve your ongoing symptoms.

Exercise is important in the treatment of FMS. While you may be feeling run down and not up to exercising, moderate regular aerobic activity can be helpful in raising your energy level and reducing discomfort. It is important that you work with your doctor or physical therapist to develop an exercise program that is appropriate to your condition. Be sure to always warm up and stretch before and after exercise. This will help to protect your muscles from injury. Try to exercise in the afternoon or early evening, but not before bedtime, as this can interfere with sleep. It is probably best if you can set aside time daily for exercise, even if you have to start with only five minutes per day. You can work slowly up to more time.

Natural Fibromyalgia treatment options

Eating a well-balanced diet, and avoiding caffeine may help with problems sleeping, and may help reduce the severity of the symptoms. Lifestyle measures to improve the quality of sleep can be effective for fibromyalgia.

Some reports indicate that fish oil, magnesium/malic acid combinations, or vitamins may be effective. Reducing stress and improving coping skills may also help reduce painful symptoms.

Many fibromyalgia patients find supplements such as Cetyl Myristoleate and SAM-E helpful.

Massage therapy can be helpful, especially when a family member is instructed on specific massage techniques to manage episodes of increased symptoms.

Treating Fibromyalgia through life style changes

You should take care to avoid taking any other medications that may interfere with sleep, including alcohol and caffeine. Other forms of therapy such as massage or relaxation techniques are also helpful for some people suffering from FMS.

Because some patients with fibromyalgia also have problems with depression or anxiety, treatment with a combination of drugs and therapy may be recommended. Your doctor may refer you to a psychiatrist or psychologist to help you deal with these symptoms.

For more severe cases of fibromyalgia, patients may need to make significant adjustments to their work or other daily activities. In some cases, patients may need to receive some kind of disability assistance, though this is often difficult to obtain. As with any chronic condition, it is important to be educated about your condition and to keep a positive attitude throughout your treatment program. You and your doctor should work together to try and make living with FMS more bearable.



This web site is intended for your own informational purposes only. No person or entity associated with this web site purports to be engaging in the practice of medicine through this medium. The information you receive is not intended as a substitute for the advice of a physician or other health care professional. If you have an illness or medical problem, contact your health care provider.


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