Because there is no simple cure for fibromyalgia, the most effective way to treat it is through a combination of prescription drugs, low-impact exercise and neurological care. Relief may also be found through stress reduction remedies such as acupuncture and meditation.
There are several common prescription medications that were designed to treat other conditions but have also been proven to alleviate the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Medications include:
Anti-epileptics or anticonvulsants are a group of medications used to treat epileptic seizures. They have also proven to be effective in the treatment of fibromyalgia as one of the causes of fibromyalgia is a problem with the central nervous system, which can also lead to epilepsy.
Another core cause of fibromyalgia may be due to a complication with the neurotransmitters and pain receptors in the brain. This has some similarities to the causes of depression and anxiety. Additionally, fibromyalgia has been known to lead to mood problems so it is common for health care providers to prescribe antidepressants as part of a fibromyalgia treatment plan.
Pain and Fatigue Medications
Pain and fatigue medication may also be prescribed to directly treat the symptoms of fibromyalgia. These medications are used to reduce inflammation, minimize muscular aches and improve sleep quality. Be sure to talk with your doctor to avoid any side effects from combining medication.
Exercise and physical activity can be effective ways to treat the symptoms of fibromyalgia, combating tiredness and improving energy levels. Exercise can also increase the brain’s production of endorphins and reduce depression.
Working with a physical therapist is a good way to get started, gradually increasing exercise and learning healthy techniques.
Yoga can also be an effective remedy to improve mood and relieve pain and fatigue. Because the practice involves meditation and breathing exercises, patients have found success in increasing muscular strength, improving mood through meditation and learning relaxation techniques.
Acupuncture may also be a healthy remedy to the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Acupuncture offers natural self-healing, increased blood flow, treatment for chronic pain and healthy changes to the levels of neurotransmitters - all of which align well with the symptoms of fibromyalgia.
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) can also be effective in the treatment of fibromyalgia. Through CBT, patients work to identify dysfunctional thought patterns and develop skills to manage negative thoughts. Teaching patients to better cope with stressors may reduce the impact of the symptoms of fibromyalgia and the perception of pain and discomfort.
Banner Health can work with you to develop and maintain unique care plans for the treatment of your fibromyalgia symptoms. Through a care plan, you’ll find comfort and ease the painful effects of fibromyalgia.