Older adults who have fibromyalgia know how intense the pain can be. Here are several different treatment options to ease the pain and other symptoms caused by the condition.
1. Exercise for a Few Minutes Each Day
Exercise can be difficult for aging adults with fibromyalgia, and it can be especially challenging for seniors with limited mobility. However, even mild exercise can help seniors find relief from fibromyalgia symptoms and lessen the side effects of this disorder. Exercising for just a few minutes a day can help with symptoms such as chronic fatigue and general discomfort. Seniors who have fibromyalgia should speak with their doctors about low-impact exercises that are safe for them.
A professional caregiver can help your aging loved one exercise safely. Homecare experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.
2. Naturally Change Sleep Habits
One recent study published in the medical journal Arthritis & Rheumatology found sleep problems can drastically increase an individual’s risk of developing fibromyalgia. Instead of using medication to sleep, seniors should start making changes to their daily habits. This includes not taking naps late in the day, limiting the amount of caffeine they consume, and turning off electronics an hour or two before going to bed.
3. Alter the Diet
There’s no single diet that works for everyone with fibromyalgia, which is why seniors and their caregivers should keep food journals. When a flare-up happens, your loved one can look in the journal to see if any foods might have caused it. Many older adults are deficient in certain vitamins and nutrients, which can cause symptoms to flare up. According to the National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association, some of the ingredients that can cause flare-ups include aspartame, caffeine, processed sugar, gluten, and sodium nitrite. Help your loved one cut out processed foods and include more fresh vegetables and fruits in his or her diet.
If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of elder care Richmond, VA, families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
4. Take Medications
Anti-seizure medication can relieve many of the symptoms associated with fibromyalgia. This medication is so effective it was the first treatment approved by the FDA to manage the side effects of fibromyalgia. Anticonvulsants can also help with other symptoms, such as insomnia. Antidepressants may also be prescribed to regulate brain chemistry and stave off depression and anxiety. Doctors may also prescribe sleep aids, pain relievers, and narcolepsy medications to treat seniors living with fibromyalgia.
5. Start Meditating
Some research now indicates meditation can alter the way an individual perceives pain. Seniors with fibromyalgia could try to focus on their feelings and emotions for a few minutes each day instead of ignoring them. Those who would like to try meditation for therapeutic purposes should speak with their doctors about finding local meditation experts who specialize in helping seniors.
If your loved one has been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and you’re not able to meet his or her needs, consider enlisting the help of a professional home caregiver. Seniors living with serious health conditions often need extensive assistance in and outside the home. Home Care Assistance is a trusted provider of Richmond live-in care. Our caregivers are expertly trained to assist seniors with bathing, grooming, light housekeeping, and various other daily tasks, and we also offer specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care. If you need compassionate professional home care for your loved one, call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (804) 207-4746.