Fibromyalgia Treatment Strategies
The most effective treatment approaches for fibromyalgia symptoms use a combination of medications, nondrug therapies, and self-help strategies. The three FDA-approved fibromyalgia medications are not the only treatments available for patients; there are other over-the-counter meds, physical and body movement therapies, and alternative medicine options. You can also improve your quality of life by learning about your options, making changes and applying self-help strategies.
Doctors generally prescribe medications aimed at reducing pain and daytime fatigue and improving sleep. Patient responses to medications vary widely, and although the FDA has approved Lyrica, Cymbalta and Savella for fibromyalgia pain, your options should not be restricted to these drugs. There are many others on the market that could help ease your symptoms but have not been specifically approved for fibromyalgia.
Nondrug and Alternative Therapies
Medications have the downside of side effects, which may limit what you can handle or the dose you can tolerate. Nondrug therapies are used to complement to your medication. Consider trying hands-on approaches (massage), movement therapies (Tai Chi), trigger point treatments (stretching sore muscles with heat), and nutritional supplements such as magnesium with malic acid and various anti-oxidants to protect your tissues.
You don’t have to rely upon a doctor or healthcare provider to feel better. There are many strategies you can use to ease your fibromyalgia symptoms that are inexpensive with few (or no) side effects. They can aid with managing muscle tension, reducing painful knots in your muscles (i.e., myofascial trigger points), conserving energy, and improving sleep. If you use a variety of self-help approaches on an everyday basis, it will reduce your symptoms and give you a sense of control over your fibromyalgia.
If you are like most fibromyalgia patients, current treatments just do not provide you with enough pain relief. Or are you expecting too much from a single medication or treatment?
Interested in finding out what other patients think of their treatment plan, or how many medications or treatments they receive? Have you had fibromyalgia longer than most? Do you have both fibro and chronic fatigue syndrome? And are your top five most troublesome symptoms the same a most fibro patients?
Take our survey and see how your treatment plan stacks up against other fibromyalgia patients. After taking the short survey, you will be able to view immediate results from more than 4,000 patients.
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