Fibromyalgia and Body Work
So the last part of this series in how to treat fibromyalgia and chronic pain naturally is Body Work, which basically encompasses massage, reflexology and acupuncture.
Massage and how it helps:
• reduces pain levels
• increases circulation of blood carrying oxygen and nutrients to cells
• increases sleep time at night
• improves mood
Types of massage that might be beneficial:
• Swedish: based on Western medical concepts of anatomy; it utilises long, smooth strokes, as well as kneading, rolling, circular and kneading motions.
• Shiatsu: incorporates acupressure points from traditional Chinese medicine. Stimulating acupressure points restores the flor of qi [life energy], improving your health.
• Deep tissue: focuses on knots or adhesions in the deeper layer of muscles which often are associated with chronic pain or injury. Techniques include deliberate strokes or friction across the grain of muscle.
• Myofacial release: focuses on muscles and fascia-the connective tissue membrane that encompasses your muscles like a sheath. Therapists use techniques to lengthen and restore elasticity using stretching and manual pressure.
• Trigger Point: Also known as Pressure Point massage, applies deep, focused pressure on knots that can form in the muscle.
• Hot Stone: uses smooth, water-heated stones at key points on the body.
• Armoatherapy: uses fragrant oils extracted from herbs, flowers and fruits to naturally enhance the benefits of massage.
• Lymphatic: a gentle technique frocused on improving the lymphatic fluid movement through the body.
• Reflexology: massage therapists rub, squeeze and press on pressure points on the feet or hands that are thought to correspond to specific areas of the body.
Research Shows Massage Can:
• Relax and normalize soft tissue. (Muscle, connective tissue, tendons and ligaments)
• Release nerves and deep connective tissues.
• Increases blood and lymph circulation.
• Helps bring a “relaxation response.”
• Heart and breathing rates slow.
• Stress hormone production decreases.
• Lowers blood pressure.
Massage Can Help With:
• Chronic back pain
• Chronic pain: can help ease pain if massage can be tolerated. Be sure to speak with the massage therapist about their experience with patients who have chronic pain and may be sensitive to touch. This is actually something I have not been able to tolerate. However, I can massage certain areas myself, so you might look up self-massage techniques, as it might help.
• Chronic migraine
• Rheumatoid arthritis pain
Reflexology Can Help With:
IBS: by putting pressure on specific areas of the hands and feet. The bowels get the pressure that they need and IBS subsides.
Trigger Points: there are just some spots you can’t touch or move without ending up with shooting pain all over. By using reflexology a specialist can actually make it so those trigger spots loosen up a bit. This means the same sore spots won’t react as poorly next time they are touched and so it will help increase pain tolerance and make it so your body will react less to those stimuli.
It is just one member of the family of Chinese Medicine. It is widely known in Western medicine for its ability to assist in pain management, though it has been used for thousands of years to heal all sorts of diseases. Modern research has proven its efficacy for a multitude of conditions. [infographicjournal.stfi.re]
Some Things Acupuncture Can Help With:
Balances Moods: calms anxiety by calming sympathetic nervous system.
Better Sleep: helps treat insomnia patients, who are typically able to sleep 3+ hours at a time after acupuncture.
Chronic Pain Management: studies show that acupuncture can help reduce chronic pain from auto accidents, migraines, tension headaches, osteoarthritis/.knee pain, fibromyalgia and even women’s issues like menstrual cramps and pain from endometriosis.
Improves Immune System: helps boost the activity of immune cells that seek out to destroy infection.
Reduce Stress: helps lower stress related high blood pressure, which helps your heart work less.
GERD: Helps with gastroesophageal reflux disease; 10 regular sessions can help reduce reflux disease and soothe heartburn.
Reducing Allergies: Can help with managing allerfy symptoms- specific treatment plans are determined on a case-by-case basis.
This closes out my series on Holistic Treatment for Fibromyalgia, but stay tuned. There is more writing to do, more things to share and remember I am working on a nutrition plan to put into motion at the beginning of October. However, I am making progress on my nutrition plan and also an exercise plan that I think will work for me, so I may put everything into motion before the end of September. I hope you will stick with me in the mean-time, as I have some interesting blog posts planned. Before I go, remember You are Amazing!