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Surviving Fibromyalgia

Well-being tips for Fibromyalgia sufferers.

Fibromyalgia is a debilitating chronic illness that often takes many years to diagnose . As it is an “invisible” illness, in that there are no outward signs of illness, sufferers often have difficulty getting support from medical professionals, government agencies and sometimes even family members.

There is no cure for Fibromyalgia at this stage, and no treatment that works for everybody. It is usually a long process of trial and error for each sufferer to find what works best for them. However, there are some simple steps you can take to keep yourself as well as possible and ensure a better quality of life despite the illness:

1. Eat Regularly

Its important enough for anyone, but when you have fibromyalgia you really need to pay attention to your diet and make sure you eat regular, balanced meals. This will help you keep your energy levels up as much as possible. It will also help you to keep your weight to a healthy level – this can be really difficult for many fibromyalgia sufferers as it is hard to get a lot of exercise and often the extra weight starts to creep up which just adds to the pain and discomfort.

2. Keep Moving

When you’re really sore and exhausted and feeling like you’ve been run over by a truck it can be really hard to get motivated to get moving. I’m not talking a jog around the block here, you have to work within your limitations. If all you can manage is a shuffle from your bed to the sofa in the lounge then do that and build up to more as you can. Regular gentle stretching can help keep you flexible and functional and can be easier than more strenuous alternatives. Many sufferers find that while swimming is gentle on the muscles it is extremely exhausting.

Make sure you do something every day. The less you move the harder it gets and it becomes a viscious cycle. Regular gentle stretching can help keep you flexible and functional and can be easier than more strenuous alternatives. Many sufferers find that while swimming is gentle on the muscles it is extremely exhausting .

3. Stay Positive

Its not easy to adjust to the limitations imposed by a chronic illness and the constant pain and exhaustion of fibromyalgia can make it so difficult to stay cheerful. In fact the tiredness and pain of fibromyalgia are also common in suffers of depression. It is especially important for your own wellbeing and quality of life that you do all you can to look on the bright side. If you are depressed get appropriate treatment. Hang out with positive, supportive people. And above all be kind to yourself!!

4. Break tasks down into small achievable chunks

When you are exhausted and in pain even the simplest of tasks can seem overwhelming. Breaking tasks down into manageable stages or chunks of time can really help. For example if you have the dishes to do, work for as long as you can comfortably, then have a rest and go back to it. Sure it takes longer to get things done, but at the end of it the job is done and you will still be able to function!

5. Ask for Help

There will be things you just can’t do. Don’t beat yourself up about it, ask for help. From family, friends, neighbours . . . Its ok to admit you have limitations and are not well. People who love you won’t judge you so don’t judge yourself!!

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