If you have fibromyalgia, you know how difficult it can be to deal with. Fibromyalgia symptoms such as chronic pain and fatigue often make it difficult to go on with your daily routine. These symptoms can sometimes have disastrous effects on your mood, leaving you feeling hopeless or even depressed. If you are feeling especially stressed out by your fibromyalgia, you may find that meditation can help you restore calmness and vitality to your life.
What is Meditation?
Meditation techniques are increasingly being used by those with fibromyalgia to manage their fibromyalgia symptoms and lift their mood. Through meditation, people can quiet their minds, reduce stress, and eliminate worries from their life, at least for a short amount of time. Meditation usually consists of focusing on the breath or a certain word, sound, or object in order to enter into an altered state of consciousness. Meditation produces feelings of relaxation and rest, and can help people learn how to focus their minds on things other than the trials and tribulations of daily life.
Meditation has been used for thousands of years by many different cultures. It is not known exactly where meditation began, though early practices can be traced to India and the Eastern World. There are numerous different types of meditation, including mindfulness meditation, concentration meditation, and transcendental meditation. Most types of meditation have the same goal – to allow a person to achieve mental clarity and a state of extreme calm. Meditation is sometimes used to promote spiritual healing.
Benefits of Meditation
When practiced regularly, all types of meditation can offer numerous physical and mental benefits. Physical benefits include:
- Reduced heart rate
- Decreased pulse
- Lowered blood pressure
- Reduced nervous system activity
Mental benefits of meditation include:
- Fewer mood swings
- Decreased feelings of depression
- Feelings of vigor and vitality
- Increased memory
- Decreased levels of anxiety
How Meditation Helps Fibromyalgia Sufferers
Meditation has recently been shown to be very effective in reducing the stress levels and symptoms associated with fibromyalgia syndrome. If you have fibromyalgia, techniques of meditation can help to improve your sleep patterns and reduce your fatigue. Meditation techniques can also help to reduce your pain levels, as it decreases the levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, in your body.
In a 1993 study involving 77 fibromyalgia patients, it was found that daily meditation improved most fibromyalgia symptoms. 51% of participants reported moderate to marked improvement in their symptoms. In 1998, a study on meditation and fibromyalgia found that meditative practices lessened the achiness, sleeplessness, muscle pain, and depression experienced by fibromyalgia patients.