Are any of the "symptoms" of fibro familiar to you? Then sadly, you know what this is like for me. I wouldn't wish what I experience daily on anyone and I'm sure you wouldn't either.
But this is our life now and it's the only one we're going to have.
We may live with fibro but there are things we can do to help ourselves and lessen it's impact on our lives. When experiencing your symptoms what do you do to help yourself?
Let's take a look at some of the fibro symptoms and see if we can come up with a few solutions....
- practice mindful meditation and relaxation exercises to calm the mind and settle the body's responses
- close your eyes and focus on your breathing...deep breaths in and slow breaths out...count to 10 during your breaths
- soothe your senses with things that calm you...a scented candle, a fuzzy blanket, sounds of nature
- find a quiet place to relax and calm your thoughts and body
- be mindful of your personal pain behaviours when feeling overwhelmed - we can often respond by over-reacting to what is going on around us
- be mindful of your self-abusive behaviours (drug use, alcohol use, self-harm, verbal/physical aggression towards)
- know your triggers and what causes the swings for you...have a plan in place to deal with them
Fatigue, Non Refreshing Sleep, Night Sweats & Insomnia
- you may wish to speak with your doctor and/or pharmacist about a prescription or over the counter (OTC) medication to help you sleep
- go to bed and wake up at the same time each day - set a regular bedtime routine
- avoid caffeine two hours before bed
- avoid use of stimulants two hours before bed
- get plenty of exercise
- avoid having a nap but lay down resting if you need
- sleep in a cool room with light blankets to avoid sweaty nights - fans are also a good aid
- wear light clothing to bed or even nothing at all
Poor Balance & Co-ordination
- take your time getting up from a seated position - hold on to something for support like a cane if you need
- upon standing wait till the dizziness has passed...then walk slowly
- use hand railings when on the stairs
- do not care anything that is heavy or awkward for you during this time
- avoid or take care when operating a motor vehicle with co-ordination problems
- use adaptive devices such as a walker, cane, or scooter...there are also handrails, and wall supports getting in and out of the bath
Sciatica, Muscle Twitches, Abdominal Cramps, Pelvic Pain, Morning Stiffness & Wide Spread Pain
- try a heating pad or hot water bottle
- soak in a hot tub or shower
- speak with your doctor and/or pharmacist - some find OTC medications like Tylenol or Aleve to help and there are other prescription medication you may find of benefit
- get some exercise...even when hurting it's still important that you keep your body moving to avoid de-conditioning
- lay down using pillows to support the areas hurting...raise legs or torso with pillows to alleviate pelvic pain and sciatica
- gentle massage to the area if tolerable
- visit a chiropractor
- do some stretching exercises while in bed loosening your body gently
Depression & Anxiety
- speak with your doctor or healthcare professional if your feelings of depression and anxiety become life controlling or you're having thoughts of self-harm or suicide
- remember that episodes of depression and anxiety will pass in time, they are "episodic" and will end.
- take care to surround yourself with the things that are positive in your life...life is more than just the bad that has happened
- be gentle with yourself in your thoughts and in your behaviours - self harm is higher when feeling depressed and/or anxious
- have things that are portable to carry with you that help to soothe you when feeling anxious
- have positive calming statements you can say to yourself when feeling depressed or anxious
- keep a diary of your thoughts when feeling depressed and/or anxious - when you are out of this episode re-read your entries - can you gain further understanding to why you felt this way?
- speak to friends, family, or trusted others when feeling depressed and/or anxious - talk therapy has its benefits - if you cannot speak with family or friends, there are also confidential crisis lines you can call for support
There are many many symptoms to fibro and not all are listed in the pic nor are all addressed here, and what will work for you may not work for others...BUT...there are things we can do to manage our fibro symptoms. Learn what works best for you and keep finding ways to help you keep on top of your pain. You may find what works one day may not work the next so it's best to have options you can turn to.
You may experience something totally different from fibro and what is causing your pain will be different again. We are unique and what hurts will be too. Learn about what is hurting you...education is key...find what soothes you too okay?
take good care of you eh?