One issue that many of us with fibromyalgia have is learning how to relax. Anxiety is always quite high, which makes it difficult for us to deal with our symptoms.
That being said, relaxation therapy has become incredibly popular among fibromyalgia sufferers. What is relaxation therapy?
And what does it do in order to help us deal with our symptoms more readily? Let’s take a quick look at all of those questions and more here.
What is Relaxation Therapy?
Relaxation therapy is a type of therapy that focuses on relaxing both the body and the mind, as the name suggests.
This type of therapy basically goes on the premise that all of the body is connected, and if you can’t get a grip on what is going on with your body, it’s going to make it more difficult for you to cope with symptoms of different disorders.
Conversely, if you can learn how to relax and loosen up your body, you will find that you are a lot better off and you will feel better.
So, what do you do in relaxation therapy? There are a lot of different types of exercises that you can do during a therapy session, but it’s going to vary based on what you need and what your therapist is planning on doing with you.
Because relaxation therapy is so varied, it’s hard to really pinpoint exactly what your therapist is going to do in order to ensure that you will feel better and get the help that you need for all of your different symptoms.
First off, you may try something known as a breathing exercise. These exercises force you to sit down and focus on your breathing. You may sit and practice deep breathing, or you may just meditate and breathe regularly.
You can do them while you’re sitting down or standing up, and it usually only takes about 5 to 10 minutes to go through a set of it. Meditation is more about focusing your mind to relax, but it’s still about your breathing as well.
The points of these sorts of exercises are to keep your blood pressure down and to allow your anxiety to decrease.
In turn, you will also discover that your muscles and your mind are a lot more relaxed than they would have been prior to the exercise. If you’re struggling with chronic pain, it can also help to reduce that in the long run.
Yoga, which is related to meditation in some ways, but also adds the element of stretching the body, can be considered relaxation therapy as well.
Now, yoga has started to be used a lot with fibromyalgia because it allows for a number of different benefits.
Stretching has been shown to help with flexibility, which can make it so that you are less stiff and, therefore, feel less pain, especially during the morning hours.
Then, you get the other benefits that we discussed above as well, making it so you feel a lot more relaxed, reducing your anxiety, and more.
More advanced types of relaxation therapy should be done with the guidance of a professional or specialist, specifically when you’re just learning how to do them.
Other types of relaxation therapy include progressive muscle relaxation, deeper breathing techniques, and more. You need to find what ones work for you and your purposes, thus allowing you to function better.
How Does Relaxation Therapy Assist with Fibromyalgia Symptoms?
We mentioned this a bit above, but there are a number of different ways that allow you to get everything under control with your fibromyalgia symptoms.
Here are some of the most prominent benefits when it comes to using relaxation therapy as part of a full therapeutic plan that you have set up with your specialist team.
As mentioned, anxiety is often a huge part of what is going on with your fibromyalgia. Mental health is a big problem for several reasons, including the unpredictability of your pain and flare-ups, and the fact that you can’t be sure as to whether or not other health issues are coming up with your initial diagnosis. Relaxation therapy can help you to clear your mind and your muscles won’t be as tense.
Speaking of tense muscles; that’s something that happens when you’re dealing with chronic pain. Imagine when you’re dealing with a sprained ankle or you have pain from carpal tunnel.
Your muscles tense up in order to try and deal with the pain. With fibromyalgia, your muscles are always tense, so you want to make sure that you do everything that you can in order to ensure that you are able to move better.
On top of that, you can also have an easier time exercising, allowing you to keep your weight down, thus reducing pain.
Last but not least, sleep and fibro fog are two other issues that can really be kept at bay when you’re doing relaxation therapy as a part of your overall therapy program. If you are exercising and relaxing more, you’re going to sleep better at night and you’re going to be able to think more clearly overall.
Your concentration will improve and you will have a much easier time remembering tasks and other information that you need in order to function.
Relaxation therapy could be one of the answers that you are looking for when it comes to dealing with your symptoms.
It’s so hard to try and sleep and relax with the disorder, so anything that can help us to get a better grip on those things can be a big deal.
Muscle pain can also be reduced by therapy. Relaxation therapy should be used with other types of therapy at the same time, so you need to make sure that you’ve got a complete plan going on before you get started with it.
Talk to your physical therapist or another specialist in order to see how it may be able to benefit you.