Fibromyalgia and Sex

by Dr. Steven Yen

The link between Fibromyalgia and sex is important because if you have fibromyalgia, you may also be having problems with your sex life or relationships. You could be experiencing loss of libido with fibromyalgia or have difficulty with sexual performance. It’s also possible your libido is healthy, but deep muscle pain, inflammation and stiffness may keep you from enjoying sex the way you used to.

One of the reason people have decreased libido, in both males and females, is because your adrenal glands are not functioning at the level they’re suppose to be. You adrenal glands are two walnut like structures sitting right above your two kidneys and they are your “stress glands”. If they are not working properly, your body will not be able to produce enough testosterone, and more often then not, you will not be “in the mood”.

Fibromyalgia and sex do not need to be mutually exclusive. Physical intimacy is an important part of any relationship, and the inability to have sex can be a major stressor in your life, making your Fibro worse. I’m sure some of you can’t remember when the last time you had sex was, partly because you just don’t feel like it but partly because you are worried about the pain during and afterward.

Some fibromyalgia patients give up romantic aspirations for fear of further injury and pain BUT being intimate with your partner is still possible! With Fibro pain and tender points, you need to work WITH your partner to find the most comfortable position during sexual intercourse. For instance, if you have fibromyalgia with low back pain, you may find that having your partner on top or lying on his or her side is most comfortable for you. Or, if you’re a woman who has Fibro and hip pain, you might use a pillow between your knees to stabilize your body during sexual intercourse.

Moist heat, including soaking in a warm bath, can help ease fibromyalgia pain and may allow you to enjoy sexual intercourse – or any exercise – without added pain. Heat increases blood flow to the site and decreases stiffness, important because, along with pain, stiffness is a key symptom of fibromyalgia. Regular moist heat applications or warm baths may help temporarily to alleviate muscle pain or tender point pain, reduce muscle spasms, and decrease inflammation.

When using moist heat, make sure it is not TOO warm or you can burn your skin! You might soak in a warm bath for at least 15 minutes before sexual intercourse or other physical activity to get the full benefit. You may also soak in a warm bath after sexual intercourse or other physical activity. Other popular types of moist heat include a warm shower (sit on a chair, if needed), warm whirlpool or hot tub, heated swimming pool, and a moist heating pad.

Talk to your partner to find a position that’s comfortable for both of you, and make sure you are in control at all times, so you can stop right away if the pain become unbearable.

A healthy sex life is important for many reasons. Not only does sex strengthen an intimate relationship, but sexual intercourse boosts endorphins. Those are the body’s natural opioids that help decrease pain and increase well-being. Talking openly with your doctor and following a few practical tips can help you resolve problems associated with Fibro, pain, and sex. Then you can begin to enjoy this aspect of your life again.  And let us not forget that sex is a GREAT exercise!

Most importantly, have sex with someone you love and deeply committed with. It will make it much more enjoyable. Now go and have yourself a good time. :)

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About Steven Yen

As a former member of the teaching faculty of the prestigious Trigenics Institute, Steven Yen has been treating Fibromyalgia naturally, without the use of drugs or surgery for patients in his private practice since 2002. He is also founder of the world's most popular Facebook page for managing Fibro naturally.

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