Figuring out what works for you may take time, but the earlier you start the earlier you can get into a routine that will keep your pain at low levels. Your doctor will recommend exercise- generally low impact aerobic exercise such as walking, water aerobics, yoga, and perhaps even pilates, though that can be too stressful for some fibro sufferers.
The best of the best is probably water aerobics. If you are under 50, you may be the youngest person in the water aerobics class, but you also may discover after your first few classes, that you are the most out of shape person, too! Water aerobic workouts are real workouts! However, a water aerobics class requires access to a pool, and not everyone is going to have that. If you are fortunate enough to have access to a pool, though, count yourself lucky and do your exercises! They will help you more than anything, and your muscles and joints will thank you.
Walking is free, and only requires shoes, but if your problem joints are your ankles, knees, or hips, you may find yourself purposefully avoiding the exercise because of joint pain. A good pair of gel inserts for your shoes can help mitigate some of the pain, and a good pair of shoes to go with the inserts can mitigate a lot of your pain. Of course, with walking you do have to pay attention to the weather, unless you are fortunate enough to have a treadmill. Still, walking is the best exercise you can do, and it requires little-to-no financial investment at first. Find a friend to walk the neighborhood with, and get started! It will help keep you in good shape, help keep you healthier, and help your fibromyalgia pain to boot.
Of course, walking will do little to help stretch your upper body, where many fibromyalgia sufferers get painful knots. Which is why yoga is highly recommended for all fibro patients. There are several excellent stretches that will help to keep your shoulders, neck, and upper back limber and stretched, and because of yoga's low-impact and gentleness, it is never painful. Indeed, one of the tenets of yoga is that if you feel pain, you are doing it wrong, and should stop the exercise. Doing yoga at least three times a week can help prevent the worst of fibro pain, and even when you are in a flare, doing it gently twice a week can help flare recovery time as well. It's one of the best things you can do for yourself.
Naturally, there will be times when the pain is going to flare up- you can't prevent all pain. When you know you're in a flare, you must rest yourself more, cut back on all activities, but do not stop completely. Staying active at a lower level can help you cut your recovery time, whereas stopping completely can lengthen your recovery time. Using heating pads, sleep, and massage therapy can help as well. If all else fails, though, don't be afraid to call your doctor and ask for help. Medication is there for you- I recommend it as a last resort, but certainly it is there and if the flare hasn't responded to other treatments, hopefully it will to this.
The best way to stop a flare, though, is to prevent it from starting. And hopefully the other tips I've given you will help you do just that.
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Author: By firstname.lastname@example.org (Kara Hash)
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