If you are suffering from fibromyalgia syndrome, then you are probably sick and tired of all the pain. From backaches to chronic headaches, fibromyalgia symptoms can really take their toll on you. To make matters worse, certain environmental, emotional, and physical factors can trigger symptoms or exacerbate existing symptoms. Be sure to find out which factors triggers your fibromyalgia symptoms and work to avoid them.
It can be hard to know when to stop sometimes, particularly if you are suffering from fibromyalgia syndrome. What you were once able to do easily may now be quite difficult to undertake. In particular, exercise and physical activity may be quite tiring. You may also find that if you overexert yourself, you are in for quite a symptom flareup.
Many fibromyalgia sufferers report an increase in their pain and suffering after exercise or other forms of physical activity. In particular, overexertion tends to increase the severity of muscle pain and fatigue. Overexertion may cause an increase in substance P, which may be responsible for causing pain in fibromaylgia patients.
In order to prevent flareups caused by overexertion, plan your activities carefully. Limit your exercise to five or ten minutes a day, until you feel strong enough to increase the length or intensity of your workouts. Reschedule unnecessary appointments and try to reduce your workload, so that you don’t overdo it.
Stress is often a good thing in our lives. After all, without a little bit of stress we wouldn’t get anything done at all: our work would sit abandoned on our desks, our dishes would be left dirty in the sink, and we wouldn’t ever take the dog out for his daily walk. But sometimes stress levels can rise and become unhealthy for us. And if you are suffering from fibromyalgia, you should be especially careful about the amount of stress you are experiencing.
It appears that stress plays a big role in triggering fibromyalgia symptoms. Episodes of emotional stress and anxiety can bring on muscle pain and headaches, or even cause anxiety attacks.
Even external stressors, such as loud noises or bright lights, can trigger these fibromyalgia symptoms. No one is really sure why fibromyalgia sufferers react so badly to stress.
It may be because stress can cause our bodies to release certain hormones. These hormones can interfere with pain perception in fibromyalgia sufferers. Others believe that stress increases muscle tension and soreness.
Tips to limit stress
In order to keep your fibromyalgia symptoms in check, work to limit the stress in your life. Here’s how:
- Take regular breaks from work and home life
- Reduce your workload
- Practice meditation
- Get regular exercise to help deal with excess energy or stressful situations.
Everyone loves it when it’s sunny and bright outside. The sun feels good on your skin, bones, and muscles, and a bright sky can really lift your spirits. Few of us look forward to the rain or snow, or having to dealing with rapid changes in weather.
But weather changes can be even worse for fibromyagia sufferers, triggering painful symptoms and worsening headaches, muscle aches, and depression.
There is no real proof that weather can actually affect the symptoms of fibromyalgia, but the majority of fibromyalgia sufferers identify weather changes as a major trigger for their pain.
In a 1981 study, over 90% of participants identified weather as a major contributor to their symptoms. In particular, cold, damp, or humid weather seemed to make fibromyalgia symptoms worse. Increases in barometric pressure have also been linked to fibromyalgia symptom flares.
In order to reduce the effect that weather changes have on your symptoms, be prepared! Dress warmly and avoid drafty corners and rooms. If possible, install bright lights in your home to help “trick” your body into thinking that it’s sunny.
If the weather is really taking it’s toll on you, you may consider moving to a warm, dry climate.
Many of us are addicted to nicotine. Whether it’s in the form of cigars or cigarettes, it is equally detrimental to our health. Smoking increases the chances of developing lung and other cancers, and can also contribute to blood pressure problems. And if you have fibromyalgia, smoking will only make matters worse.
Many fibromyalgia smokers find that inhaling nicotine actually triggers symptom flare ups and can even make symptoms worse than usual. This may be due to the fact that nicotine impairs the function of your muscles.
Nicotine enters your blood stream, reducing the amount of oxygen circulating around your body. As a result, your muscles don’t get vital oxygen and are unable to repair themselves, causing you pain. Nicotine has also been linked to muscle contractions, which could lead to sleep disorders, like restless leg syndrome.
Try to kick the habit
Do your best to cut nicotine out of your lifestyle. You might have heard about those vaporizers for sale, which is becoming a trend now because of its health benefits, you can go ahead and try them. Ask your physician about a smoking cessation aid or join a support group to help you make the transition.
We are all guilty of it. And if you are suffering from fibromyalgia it could really impact your symptom frequency and severity. Many fibromyalgia suffers attempt to reduce muscle and joint pain by walking differently or holding their bodies differently.
This change in posture, though, may actually be doing more harm then good. Compensating for body pain often throws the whole skeleton out of whack, increasing your muscle pain and fatigue.
In order to avoid the pitfalls of poor posture, speak with your health care provider about other ways in which you can reduce your pain. Try visiting with a physiotherapist who can help you to perform special exercises to improve your posture.