10 Natural Ways to Treat Fibromyalgia You Didn’t Know About

If you or a loved one has fibromyalgia, you know all too well the pain it can cause. Alleviate some of the symptoms with these alternative treatments.

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Acupuncture

01_Acupunture_Natural_ways_toistock/GlobalStockAcupuncture is perhaps the oldest pain management treatment. Using tiny needles, the practitioner stimulates specific parts of the body in order to provide pain relief Electroacupuncture, acupuncture combined with the use of an electric current, is an effective, natural way to treat fibromyalgia pain.

Yoga

02_Yoga_Natural_ways_toistock/PeopleImagesIn addition to being an excellent way to reduce stress as well as stretch the muscles, both essential for fibromyalgia sufferers, a 2011 study revealed that yoga is an effective fibromyalgia treatment. It alleviated pain, increased mindfulness, and altered cortisol (stress hormone) levels in the study's participants.

Moist heat

03_Heat_Natural_ways_toistock/sjoemanApplying heat to muscle pain, particularly moist heat, encourages blood flow which relieves stiffness and pain. To treat painful fibromyalgia symptoms, take a hot shower, warm up your clothing in the dryer before putting them on, or use a moist heating pad on the affected area.

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Vitamin D

04_Dog_Natural_ways_toistock/primeimagesAlthough research has failed to definitively connect vitamin D levels with fibromyalgia, people with fibromyalgia have reported an improvement when vitamin D is increased. Supplementation has helped several people with fibromyalgia, so this is worth a try. Many people are vitamin D deficient anyway, so the extra sunshine or supplement can only help.

Massage

05_massage_Natural_ways_toistock/NKS_ImageryMassage therapy promotes relaxation, relieves stress, and loosens tight muscles: all beneficial for fibromyalgia patients. Additionally, massage therapy increases blood flow, which is also helpful for the treatment of fibromyalgia symptoms. The effects of massage are not long-lasting, but regular massage therapy can relieve the pain from fibromyalgia. (Find out conditions you might be mistaking for fibromyalgia.)

Magnesium

06_magnesium_Natural_ways_toistock/Fatman73Some fibromyalgia patients take magnesium supplements since there is some evidence that those with fibromyalgia have magnesium deficiencies. While there is anecdotal support, no studies have proven the effectiveness of magnesium as a fibromyalgia treatment. However, taking magnesium is safe, so it is worth trying.

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Capsaicin

07_cap_Natural_ways_toistock/HandmadePicturesCapsaicin is a naturally occurring compound found in chili peppers and other nightshade plants. Oddly enough, fibromyalgia patients should avoid ingesting nightshade plants as they cause inflammation, but when capsaicin is isolated from the rest of the plant, topical application can reduce joint pain and inflammation. Capsaicin interferes with pain signals and provides relief, usually in the form of a topical ointment.

Biofeedback

08_bio_Natural_ways_toistock/mustafagullNo studies exist as of yet to confirm the effectiveness of biofeedback therapy for treating fibromyalgia pain, but many patients have found it to be an effective alternative treatment. Biofeedback attempts to train the mind to control pain by providing feedback in the form of skin temperature, muscle tension, and other ways.

Melatonin

09_melatonin_Natural_ways_to_istock/marilynaMelatonin is often taken to promote sleep, but many fibromyalgia patients report pain relief from taking melatonin. While there is a link between sleep issues and fibromyalgia, there is no confirmed connection between melatonin deficiency and fibromyalgia pain. Still, trying various supplements that have successfully helped other fibromyalgia sufferers may be beneficial.

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Chiropractic therapy

010_ch_Natural_ways_to_istock/AJ_WattAlthough the National Institutes of Health says there is insufficient evidence to recommend chiropractic therapy as an effective fibromyalgia treatment, many patients enjoy pain relief from a visit to the chiropractor. The practitioner manipulates the spine and works to realign it, which promotes healing and does decrease pain in those areas. Adjustments are completely natural and are beneficial for a wide array of conditions, so visiting a chiropractor to address fibromyalgia is worth trying.

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