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Living With Fibromyalgia

Clip Number: 5 of 5
Presentation: Fibromyalgia
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Reviewed By: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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Successful treatment for fibromyalgia goes beyond medicine. It involves learning strategies for dealing with the condition.
Exercise can decrease pain, calm the mind, and help with sleep (which is crucial for those with fibromyalgia). Exercise doesn't have to be intense to be helpful. Anything from simple stretching and moving to aerobic exercise will do. Listen to your body, and adjust the type and amount of exercise as needed.
Lack of sleep can increase symptoms of fibromyalgia. Practice good sleep hygiene by going to bed at the same time every day. Also, avoid caffeine and alcohol after noon, and try to limit daytime napping to one hour.
Stress and anxiety can worsen fibromyalgia symptoms. Try to be mindful of your stress level and give yourself permission to take a mental break when you need it. Meditation, exercise, and talking to a friend are all great ways to decompress.
With fibromyalgia, projects can seem overwhelming -- breaking tasks down into small steps can make it easier to complete them.
Finally, it's important to remember that fibromyalgia is a chronic condition. You'll have good days and you'll have bad days. Being mindful of your limits and asking for help when you need it can go a long way toward improving your health and reducing frustration.

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