Thursday, February 16, 2012

What and Why: The role of complimentary therapies for improving fibromyalgia symptoms

Fibromyalgia is a centralization disorder, which means it begins in the central nervous system which has become easily over stimulated. We also know from many studies that what we think does affect the way our brain processes information. There are many good techniques that teach you how to calm our mind, and thereby lower blood pressure, heart rate, and the release of cortisol. Also important is addressing myofascial pain syndrome (AKA chronic myofascial pain) which is now known to be a common comorbid condition.

Addressing centralization, changing the way the brain thinks.

Anyone who has practiced biofeedback understands how our thoughts have the ability to change the way our body reacts. Because cortisol is already altered in FM, stressful emotional, mental, spiritual, or even physical events put us at higher risk for an upset in cellular metabolism putting micro-healing in jeopardy.

Mindfulness, creative visualization, guided meditation, biofeedback, Qi Gong, Yoga, and T’ai Chi (discussed in length in Chapter 5 of our book “The Power of Mind, Body, and Spirit”) are all good ways of learning how to turn down the volume on your stress meter. Identify known stressors and try to particularly avoid them when you are having a flare in symptoms.

The role of the myofascial and what can be done about it

If you have MPS/CMP, and most FM patients do, you have knotted up pieces of muscle fiber that shorten the muscle, radiate pain and cause dysfunction of the muscle. The only thing that will treat a myofascial trigger point (MTP) is direct stimulation. Bodywork in the form of MTP injections, specific MTP pressure therapy, active release therapy, and myofascial release are indicated. Some find TEN’s units effective in blocking the pain impulse from these significant peripheral pain stimulators.

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This blog is based on the question “What alternative therapies help with physical symptoms of fibromyalgia?” Visit my profile as expert, where you will find answers to many questions.

All blogs, posts and answers are based on the work in Integrative Therapies for Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and Myofascial Pain: The Mind-Body Connection by Celeste Cooper, RN, and Jeff Miller, PhD. 2010, Vermont: Healing Arts press and are not meant to replace medical advice.

Author of Chapter Five, Living with and Coping Effectively Through Fibromyalgia: Detecting Barriers, Understanding the Clues, in Fibromyalgia Insider Secrets: 10 Top Experts, 2nd Ed. Ebook complied by Deirdre Rawlings, ND, PhD

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