Are you looking for some everyday tips for for Coping with Fibromyalgia symptoms? You’re not alone! Learning how to self-manage your chronic pain symptoms with exercise and other lifestyle habits is vital to improve your mood, improve your sleep, and get relief from pain. For instance, many people with Fibro are often caring for others, either by parenting or care giving for an older loved one. Yet they allow little time to take care of their own health and well-being. In today’s rushed society it can feel almost impossible to find the time to take care of yourself. I know that for myself personally it takes a great deal of time, energy, and scheduling just to find the time to get a twenty minute jog in for the day. When you add in careers, children, friends, and family and mix that up with fibromyalgia, it can seem impossible on the best days. This is a problem because this chronic disease comes with a whole set of limitations. Those limitations stem from Fibromyalgia tender points, chronic fatigue, and ongoing pain and stiffness. This alone makes it difficult to find the motivation needed to begin changing your lifestyle in order to become pain free! The limitations of your chronic pain can be lessened if you get the facts. Learn more about the disease and how it’s treated. Seek the latest information on fibromyalgia and lifestyle habits. Get answers to your questions and take proactive steps to focus on your health. With increased support, you can get your life and priorities in order. Here are some simple strategies you can use in coping with chronic pain associated with fibro:
1. Take care of yourself FIRST
In my clinical experience with Fibro patients, many of you are loving and caring people, in fact, too loving and too caring. You put other’s needs before yours, and you make sure everyone else is taken care off before you take care of yourself. You overwork yourself to a point where you’re wiped out just to make sure everyone’s needs are fulfilled, and many time you neglect your own health because you are just too busy… stop!!! You need to learn to start saying NO! You need to learn to set a limit for yourself, you need to setup boundariesso that others know when they need to give you rest and stop bothering you.
2. ASK for help
Stop being too proud. Stop thinking you can do this by yourself. Chronic pain is a very difficult condition to live with, so don’t try to handle everything yourself. It’s ok to tell people what you need help with. Just be honest with them and let them you what you can and cannot do. Never feel ashamed of asking for help from friends or family. Sometimes you just cannot do everything, and asking for some assistance here and there is usually well understood.
3. Don’t “own” your Fibro
You don’t usually hear people say “I’m in pain or tired because of my cancer”. People just say “I’m in pain because of cancer” or “I’m tired because of cancer”. But too many times I’ve heard patient say “I’m having a bad day today because of MY fibromyalgia.” Stop saying that!!! When you say “my fibromyalgia”, you are treating it as if it’s something that belongs to you that you carry around in your purse or briefcase. Yes, you have fibro, and it’s alright to tell people when you have a flare up. Just say “I’m having a bad day because of fibromyalgia”. Words are POWERFUL. When you keep referring to your condition as “my fibromyalgia”, you are telling yourself you own it and it will never goes away. There is the old expression that goes “if you say it enough times it becomes true”. This is a mental adjustment that many people have to make. Do not let fibro define who you are. You define that! Not this horrible disease!
4. Get a good doctor that gives a damn
This is a hard one. Too many of my colleagues are still baffled by this condition. Some of them actually still don’t believe that fibro exists. In my opinion, that shows they are either not listening to their patients carefully enough, or they lack the ability keep themselves updated with the latest research available. There’s absolutely no question that fibromyalgia is real and it can be successfully managed as long as both the doctor and the patients are willing to put in the effort! The good news is that there are still many competent and compassionate doctors out there, who do not treat their patients like numbers and are willing to spend the time to listen to you and investigate what is going on. It’s important for you to find them. Look for these doctors and don’t stop until you find one. They are out there and you deserve to have them help you in this journey.
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