The management of muscle and joint pain is important for fibromyalgia patients. In addition to medications, there are various physical therapies that patients can try to help ease the pain and other symptoms of the disease.
We’ve put together a list of seven different physical therapies which can be used to help fibromyalgia patients using information from practicalpainmanagement.com.
Hydrotherapy is the practice of using water to relieve aching muscles. Simply soak in a tub full of warm water (not hot as it can cause your blood pressure to drop). You can add essential oils or Epsom salts to help relieve pain. A warm bath before bed may also improve your sleep.
Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (also known as TENS) is something you may associate with childbirth, but a TENS machine can also be used for fibromyalgia patients to help ease muscle pain and spasms. It stops the pain signals from reaching the spinal cord, while also triggering the release of endorphins which naturally relieve pain.
Deep Tissue Massage
A trained massage therapist will apply intense pressure when massaging to ensure they’re reaching the deep tissue and connecting tissue. This helps to lessen the tension in the muscles and decrease spasms.
Using heat is an excellent way to help relax muscles and encourage blood flow to areas that are particularly painful. This can easily be done at home using dry or damp hot towels. Simply hold the towel against the affected area until you feel relief.
An ultrasound uses sound waves to produce heat which improves blood flow to deep muscle tissue. It can be used to relieve pain, stiffness, spasms, and inflammation.
Low-Impact Aerobic Exercise
Any low-impact exercise that doesn’t put additional pressure on the joints is good for helping with pain relief. Aqua aerobics, walking, swimming, and cycling are all low-impact exercises that may benefit fibromyalgia patients.
Strength and Flexibility Exercise
Exercises that target strength and flexibility help to strengthen muscles and relieve pain. These include weight-lifting, yoga, pilates and resistance training.
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