7 Tips to Manage Fibromyalgia Morning Pains

Anyone is susceptible to fibromyalgia, a common and chronic syndrome that causes bodily pain and mental distress. If fibromyalgia pain is making your mornings difficult, follow these 7 simple strategies for better sleep and more pleasant mornings.

Commonly Known Facts about Fibromyalgia:

  • Fibromyalgia causes widespread pain, fatigue, and other types of discomfort.
  • Symptoms resemble those of arthritis. However, fibromyalgia affects soft tissue rather than the joints.
  • The root of fibromyalgia is unknown. Possible factors include traumatic events, repetitive injuries, rheumatoid arthritis, other autoimmune disorders, and genetics.
  • There is no cure, but medications, exercise, acupuncture, and behavioural therapy can help relieve symptoms and improve sleep quality.
  • Fibromyalgia is more common in women than in men.

People with fibromyalgia suffer from non-restorative sleep. This means they can sleep a full 8 or 9 hours, and wake up feeling as if they haven’t slept at all. In addition, fibromyalgia patients suffer from stiffness and pain in the soft tissues, which makes movement extremely uncomfortable in the morning. Try the following tips to soothe fibromyalgia pain and ease into your morning.

1. Wake up with a Warm Shower or Bath

One of the quickest and easiest ways to lessen morning pain, stiffness, and other symptoms of fibromyalgia is by taking a warm shower or bath. Warm water in the morning will help to relax muscles and offer a decent amount of instant relief. Rheumatologists recommend you stay in the warm water for at least 10 minutes for maximum relaxation.

2. Avoid Caffeine, Alcohol, and Nicotine

Consuming the following substances can disrupt good sleep, which can make pain and morning stiffness even worse. Many experts agree that caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol will exacerbate fibromyalgia symptoms due to their stimulatory effects on the body, especially if consumed just prior to sleep. Therefore, we recommend you avoid or cease the consumption of these substances as soon as possible.

3. Follow Healthy Sleeping Habits

Getting a good amount of quality sleep might be the most important step in minimizing morning pain and stiffness for fibromyalgia patients. In order to achieve longer and better sleep, follow these following tips:

  1. Avoid watching TV or doing work in the bedroom at night
  2. Keep your bedroom temperature at a comfortable level — a room that’s too cold will increase stiffness, and one that’s too warm can cause muscle aches and increased pain. 
  3. Exercise during the day
  4. Avoid sleeping during the day

4. Maintain a Set Sleep Routine

Whether you are suffering from fibromyalgia or not, having a sleep schedule and sticking to it creates a pattern for your biorhythm and can improve sleep quality. However, due to the sleep disruption seen in fibromyalgia, this is not always possible. As a result, some doctors suggest patients to emphasize more on the time they get up in the morning and not so much the time they go to bed. Since the time one gets up in the morning is a strong determiner of one’s next 24-hour circadian rhythm, including the time the person is likely to fall asleep the next night. 

5. Experiment with Melatonin Pills

Many patients with fibromyalgia use this natural supplement to get a good night’s sleep. Melatonin pills are available over-the-counter and have been shown to improve sleep hygiene in those who suffer from chronic syndrome. You can also enhance your natural melatonin production by being outside in sunlight during the daytime and dimming the lights at night a few hours before bedtime. This helps to regulate the normal secretion of melatonin.

6. Start Mornings with a Self-Massage

Gently rubbing your own shoulders, neck, arms, and back immediately upon rising in the morning will help loosen your muscles and ease morning stiffness and pain. Try a self-massage routine after you take a hot shower or bath in the morning for optimal impact on fibromyalgia pain.

7. Practice Tai Chi or Yoga

By incorporating either or both of these ancient stretching exercises into your morning routine, you can reduce morning pain due to fibromyalgia. The general practice of yoga and tai chi helps minimize morning stiffness in the morning due to the physical stretching aspect. These routines are particularly important to adopt as you age.