Pregnancy can often bring about many symptoms that are similar to fibromyalgia — fatigue, nausea, joint ache and brain fog to name a few — which can compound symptoms of the disease. Although fibromyalgia shouldn’t stop you from starting a family, there are considerations you need to take into account. We’ve put together a list of useful tips based on information from fmpcaware.org.
Be in the best health you can be.
Before trying to conceive, it makes sense to be in the best possible physical condition. Eat sensibly, get plenty of rest, exercise and, if necessary, take pregnancy-friendly supplements. The healthier you are, the easier your pregnancy will be. Keep this regimen up throughout your pregnancy where possible.
Review all medications.
It’s wise to speak to your doctor about your plans to start a family, so they can review the medications you’re taking. Your doctor will ensure that the medications you’re on are safe to continue throughout pregnancy or switch you over to ones that are. You will also need to look at any vitamins and supplements you take as some as not considered safe for pregnant women.
Educate friends and family.
Fibromyalgia causes fatigue at the best of times, as does pregnancy — so combining the two may mean that you feel even more fatigued than usual. It’s important that others understand this so they can help you out more often and demand less of you.
Review your pain management.
Some of the things you do to ease fibro pain may not be suitable during pregnancy, including hot baths and most over-the-counter pain medications. Pregnancy can put a lot of pressure on joints particularly in the pelvis, back and hips so you may experience more pain than usual. There are aids available that may help, such as pressure stockings and maternity belts.
Enlist help after delivery.
When you come home from the hospital, you’ll need someone to help with both your needs and the baby’s needs. This may be too much for your partner alone, so you may need help from friends and family until everyone finds their footing.
Don’t stress about breastfeeding.
The same rules apply for breastfeeding if you have fibromyalgia as for those who don’t have the condition. Don’t feel under any pressure to breastfeed and if you’re having difficulties, consult a professional for advice. Talk to your doctor about the medications you’re on to ensure they’re safe to take while breastfeeding. Accept that breastfeeding is tiring work and not a job you can pass on to someone else, so let other people do as much as possible for you in other areas.
Go with the flow.
No baby is born with an instruction manual and every mother’s experience is different. Ask for advice if you need it, but bear in mind you will get wildly differing opinions on every aspect of raising a child depending who you ask. Trust and have faith in yourself, and do what feels right for you and your family, rather than what others think you should be doing.
Fibromyalgia News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.