Best Fibromyalgia Alternative Treatment: Herbal Supplements and Natural Remedies
Long-term conditions, also known as chronic conditions, can bring a lot of difficulties to a person’s life. One such condition is fibromyalgia, which is characterized by consistent pain in the muscles and bones, often causing sleep and cognitive disturbances.
Women are usually those affected by fibromyalgia, but there are cases where men and children are diagnosed with this condition. Many factors can cause its onset, including genes, infections, stress, or trauma, but healthcare practitioners sometimes can’t determine the exact root of such disorder.
Fibromyalgia can be treated with adequate medications, natural supplements, and Eastern medicine practices. Namely, therapies such as acupuncture and Chinese herbs can significantly help alleviate the pain, mitigate the sleep issues, and bring improvements to both mental and physical health.
This article will provide you with a broader image of the fibromyalgia concept, its symptoms, causes, and the best fibromyalgia treatment options.
Makari Wellness: Fibromyalgia and Acupuncture Do Get Along
One of the most prominent goals of acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine is to help patients recover from a condition that is causing them pain, discomfort, or any emotional or mental inconvenience.
Mike Woodworth from Makari Wellness believes that successful treatment for fibromyalgia rests on the combination of Eastern and Western practices, which deliver the most significant and long-lasting outcomes to a patient’s health – and that’s what he does at his clinic.
Don’t hesitate to call us at (888) 871-8889 and book acupuncture for fibromyalgia.
What is Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition followed by consistent pain all over the body (widespread pain). Apart from the pain, people that have fibromyalgia often have sleep problems, feel fatigued all the time, and are under emotional and mental stress.
Patients often feel a dull ache in different body parts, mostly in the back of the head, upper chest, hips, knees, and outer elbows. The pain may vary from mild to severe, causing almost unbearable discomfort.
As already mentioned, healthcare practitioners can’t often provide explanations about why some people develop fibromyalgia, which makes it difficult to diagnose.
What are the Most Common Fibromyalgia Symptoms?
The most prevalent symptom of fibromyalgia is pain, which is spread all over the body. People who suffer from such a condition are less tolerant to pain, which is why their brain and nerves may misinterpret or overreact to even standard ache signals.
Pain is often located in various muscles and other soft tissues around your body. That said, the most common areas affected by fibromyalgia pain are:
- Chest: Fibromyalgia pain in the chest is often compared to the pain caused by a heart attack. It’s centered in the cartilage that connects your ribs to your breastbone, and it may radiate to your shoulders and arms. It’s often sharp, stabbing, and feels like a burning sensation.
- Back: Back pain is one of the conditions that affect about 80% of Americans. That said, it might not indicate fibromyalgia, but if it’s followed by tiredness and brain fog, it might provide a more precise image of the real condition.
- Legs: Leg pain is another common form of ache patients often feel, and it’s similar to a sensation of muscle soreness. It may also feel like numbness or tingling, leading to restless leg syndrome (RLS). The pain is usually deep, burning, and throbbing.
Apart from the pain, people with fibromyalgia feel consistent tiredness, sleep disorders, headaches, depression, anxiety, trouble focusing and paying attention, and even bladder problems.
One of the symptoms typical for fibromyalgia is the so-called brain fog, which is a term used to describe fuzzy feeling patients often get. Such a fog involves memory lapses, difficulty concentrating, and trouble staying attentive.
It’s essential to know that symptoms are different in men and women. Namely, women are those that go through a more severe phase than men, which means that they have more widespread pain, IBS (irritable bladder syndrome) symptoms, and feel more fatigued.
Which are the Typical Fibromyalgia Causes?
When it comes to fibromyalgia onset, healthcare practitioners aren’t always sure what could be the potential cause of it. Still, recent studies have come up with some conclusions that mark infections, genes, trauma, and stress as some of the most prominent factors that impact the development of fibromyalgia.
Here is how each of them affects our organism:
- Infections: Any severe illness from the past (flu, pneumonia, Salmonella, etc.) could provoke fibromyalgia and make symptoms even worse.
- Genes: Fibromyalgia often runs in families, which is why you might be at risk of developing it if some of your family members have it. Besides, some opinions find certain gene mutations responsible for the condition onset.
- Traumas: People who went through severe physical or emotional trauma are at a higher risk of developing fibromyalgia. Namely, this condition has been linked to PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder).
- Stress: Stress has always been responsible for many disorders, leaving long-lasting consequences to a human’s body. Accordingly, healthcare practitioners tend to “blame” it for fibromyalgia development, claiming that it makes the brain lower the pain threshold and overreact to normal pain signals.
What is the Best Treatment for Fibromyalgia?
Before you start with any fibromyalgia treatment, it’s essential to visit your doctor, who’ll determine where the chronic pain is coming from. After a detailed examination, your doctor must verify that no other condition is causing the ache so that he or she can prescribe the right treatment.
Fibromyalgia can’t be diagnosed via lab tests or imaging scans, which is why it’s often difficult to distinguish it from autoimmune diseases, which show quite similar symptoms.
Still, your doctor may diagnose you with this condition if you’re feeling widespread pain for 3 months or longer, and if it’s followed by the symptoms typical for fibromyalgia.
So, what happens after a diagnosis?
Your healthcare practitioner may suggest various treatments for fibromyalgia, which often involve acupuncture, herbal supplements, pain relief medications, self-care measures, and even some lifestyle and diet changes.
The best results often come from the combination of these treatment solutions, since each of them is aimed at improving a particular aspect of your condition. Let’s see some further explanations.
Acupuncture for Fibromyalgia
Acupuncture originates from Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), and it has been used as a treatment for about 5.000 years. Although it’s rooted in ancient philosophy and approaches, it’s practiced for healing many different diseases nowadays.
It’s characterized by the use of small, thin, sterile, and stainless-steel needles that are inserted into your skin, targeting specific acupoints found all over your body. By stimulating such points, your body releases the energy and impacts the blood circulation, reducing pain, anxiety, and other inconveniences you might be feeling.
It’s exceptionally efficient in treating chronic and severe pain, as well as in bringing improvements to other symptoms typical for fibromyalgia, such as sleeping disorders, emotional issues, stiffness, and more.
People are generally skeptical about the entire procedure, mainly because it involves needles. However, when a certified acupuncture practitioner performs it, you won’t need to worry – your therapy will be implemented with the highest level of safety and efficiency.
Acupuncture fibromyalgia treatment is even more beneficial when it’s combined with Chinese herbs, exercises, and natural remedies. Still, one of its major advantages lies in the fact that it’s a drug-free therapy, which is why it’s way more recommended than antidepressants and other medications that include chemical substances.
A recent study has shown remarkable improvements that acupuncture has brought to patients with fibromyalgia. Namely, they started to feel reduced pain and improved sleeping habits after 30-minute sessions held twice a week for 12 weeks.
Specific fibromyalgia acupuncture points have played a significant role in the treatment. Their stimulation was crucial for achieving the best results, especially since they were stimulated in the same sequence. Such acupoints are:
- GV 14 (Governing Vessel 14)
- UB 23 (Urinary Bladder 23)
- GV 4 (Governing Vessel 4)
- UB 20 (Urinary Bladder 20)
- CV 6 (Conception Vessel 6)
- SP 10 (Spleen 10)
- UB 13 (Urinary Bladder 13)
- UB 17 (Urinary Bladder 17)
The improvements came as a result of the combination of acupuncture and moxibustion – a treatment that involves the burning of dried mugwort in order to stimulate acupoints. When combined with acupuncture, it’s often used to warm the needles and help patients retrieve their energy and well-being.
The power of fibromyalgia acupuncture lies in its ability to correct neuroendocrine dysfunctions by stimulating endorphins in the midbrain. Endorphins have beneficial effects on a human’s organism, especially because it eliminates pain, improves mood, and enhances a patient’s overall health.
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Dry Needling and Fibromyalgia
Dry needling is a therapy that could be considered a specific style of acupuncture focussed on orthopedics and not guided by the differential diagnosis of acupuncture for internal conditions.
Unlike acupuncture, which is rooted in Eastern medicine, dry needling rests on the ideas of modern Western practices. It uses needles similar to those utilized by acupuncturists, and it’s quite beneficial for treating different kinds of pain, no matter whether it’s caused by an injury or due to some other factors.
That said, dry needling treatment for fibromyalgia can bring significant improvements to patients who feel consistent pain. Namely, one of the primary goals of needling therapy is “deactivating” trigger points that come as a result of a particular condition or something else.
People with fibromyalgia often feel pain in the back of the head, tops of the shoulders, upper chest, knees, hips, and outer elbows, which may be seen as trigger points that need to be treated in order to eliminate the ache.
Dry needling will relax the trigger points and muscles that may be responsible for the pain. Additionally, it impacts the blood flow and oxygenation, making sure the body is supplied with enough resources that prevent the discomfort.
Like acupuncture, orthopedic needling is more efficient when combined with exercises, herbs, and dietary supplements.
Herbal Treatment for Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia herbal treatment is another method for mitigating the symptoms of this condition successfully.
The group of herbs that brings the most benefits is Chinese herbs. It is believed to bring improvements to people who’re dealing with chronic pain and stress, providing better results than most pharmaceutical products.
Natural remedies for fibromyalgia that involve the use of Chinese herbs are mostly based on hypericum, which is good for depression, American ginseng for lethargy, and valerian root for insomnia. Such herbs mostly come in the form of pills or powder.
Since acupuncture eliminates the pain and impacts the blood flow, its combination with Chinese herbs could be the best treatment for fibromyalgia. Your practitioner will recommend the best formula that could improve your condition, making sure you receive the most efficient therapy.
Dietary Supplements for Fibromyalgia
Most patients start to feel better after they’ve made some critical changes to their lifestyle. An unhealthy diet and bad habits are often responsible for the onset of different conditions, which is why it’s essential to balance your nutrition and get rid of the things that keep ruining your lifestyle.
After you’ve been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, you should try to eat healthier and become as active as possible. Although such habits won’t cure your condition, they will improve your symptoms and make you feel much better.
Therefore, consider the following tips:
- Enrich your food diet with fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein
- Drink a lot of water
- Reduce sugar intake
- Exercise as often as you can
- Maintain your healthy weight
Making significant changes to your life isn’t always the easiest task you need to complete, but it sure has positive and long-lasting effects on your lifestyle. If you choose acupuncture as your fibromyalgia treatment, you’ll become more aware of the importance of maintaining healthy life habits, and you’ll give your best to become the best version of yourself.
Other fibromyalgia natural treatment solutions you’re advised to try are:
- Physical therapy
- Tai Chi
- Massage therapy