By: Dr Alex Robber
Do you think he’s cold? Try feeling fibromyalgia! The cold goes down straight into our bones, and it takes much longer to get warm. The cold causes our joints to ache and become rigid and our muscles to throw painfully. For most people living with fibromyalgia winter is the hardest time.
One of the most common complaints from people with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome is how frightening cold weather can be. The cold seems to be slipping into our bones and making it all tighten up and ache. At the same time, many of us are heat sensitive and some are heat-and cold tolerant.
Which makes it difficult to handle regardless of the weather or climate in which you live. It takes care of your surroundings and how it impacts the body to handle the symptom and think ahead for those moments when you know you’re going to deal with extremes. The cold can cause injury to our skin and it can be absurdly difficult to warm up when we get frozen.
For many people, winter can be a difficult time due to the cold weather, limited sunshine and shorter days. But what’s interesting is that for people with fibromyalgia, weather that’s a little on the cold side can be somewhat soothing. Most will say the warm and humid months are bad for their pain Cold weather is less likely to make us sweat and may have beneficial effects on the brain’s pain centers.
On the other hand, if you have ache and other symptoms of fibromyalgia, you can experience unenthusiastic effects during winter in areas of extreme cold, or when the temperature fluctuates a lot. “It will be forced into shortening by a cold breeze blowing across an already energy-deficient muscle, and shortened muscles are the main and crucial cause of pain. When, in the winter, you believe your symptoms of fibromyalgia are severe, you are not unaccompanied.
Here are few suggestions of Fibromyalgia Community:
- Nimor: Heated body wrap and Heating Pads.
- Fammy: Liquid collagen
- Debbie: Strong will & resolve to survive it! Along with a good support group to vent & learn from (like this one). A close one who believes in u & your pain. These are going to give u a good mindset. Not to forget, along with Fleece, Aspercreme & Heated Blanket, Pain Meds (if they’ll give them to u). To me most of all, remember to say my prayers every night and know that God still has a plan and purpose for my life.
- Warm ankle boot slippers – Loren
- Beki and Zara: Pains layer and heat packs. it’s by M.C.C (motorbikes cosmetic company) all the products are natural and were made for fibro pain. It really helps sooth the aches and pains and can be used in so many ways. I have pot by my bed, one downstairs and small pot in my bag.
- Kristi: Tiger balm, heat pads, lots of layers of clothing, try to eliminate Christmas stress by getting prepared early oh and stock up on food because if it’s too cold to move you have food in your belly
- Judy: Hot cammomille tea (warm and ease stomach).
- Paula: Lots of blankets. Pain meds. Hot tea. Heated blankets. “Heat32 degrees” undergarments
- Laura: Got a new car with heated seats and steering wheel. It is bliss.
- Elizabeth added Me too! Whoever invented heated seats and steering wheels are saints!
- Ann also added Oh my, just got car with heated seats. Must drive for my job, helps so much!
- Beth: Wheat bags galore, some very warm socks, and lots of cups of tea xxx
- Laveta: Hot tub twice a day for 20 minutes
- Heidi: A heated mattress pad. A remote car starter. A warm office and home. Very little time outside in the cold. A lot of positive self-talk
- Kendra: Epsom salt and Aleve
- Kathy: Voltarine cream (Diclofenac Sodium Gel). my doctor prescribes it for me. I swear by it, it’s my miracle pain relief especially before and after work.
- Debra: Vitamin D, Vitamin B6, Fish Oil, Magnesium, Calcium Citrate Malate, Vitamin C. Thrive, Frankincense, Lemongrass, Lavender, Lime, Copabia, Oregano, Thyme And Peppermint Pure Essential Oils. As little stress as possible, but that’s hard when it comes to your 62 and having to work until I’m 67 to retire as I’m alone and single. I feel like this and the Drs said I must stop working. How is it that one pays the rent without not working? I depend on my faith to get me through every day, every minute. When I can get in and out of the hot tub. Comfy lightweight pj’s and socks and my fascia blaster for my sciatica problems, a memory foam topper for my at least 4 “dept mattress is a must for the hips. Drama free friendships.
- Patricia: My favorite item to survive the winter is my bean socks. I take knee socks fill them with dried beans. Heat them in microwave 2-3 minutes. They conform to my body and I can put them on different spots.
- Nicolette: Rice bags, heating pad, warm gloves, space heater (with a remote). Hoping to get a remote car starter next month.
- Amie: Plenty of minerals, especially magnesium malate. It helps heal the nerves and tissues and relaxes the muscles. Also using probiotics and greens helps with digestion. If the pain is bad and pain meds unavailable or not working, Kratom works well and is safer than many other things. Turmeric and ginger are also very helpful. Other than that, staying warm and comfy with heating pads and blankets and comfy pajamas. Soft, warm clothes are a must. And have uplifting music and faith and you can get through anything. God bless everyone
- Jacquiline: Create a box with all your favorite things that you need to help u through winter…. Mines is… Your medication, bottle of water, a book or magazines, paper n pen, heat products, cozy PJ’s, nice cuddly throw, cozy sox/gloves, iPad or tablet, Aromatherapy oils, box of tissues, a relaxing candle and lastly a big box of your favorite chocolates
- Deede: Has anyone ever heard of and tried drinking water Hester with Thyme? Maybe add some honey for flavor? Is this good for inflammation? I’ve never been diagnosed with fibromyalgia but pretty sure I have it. I fit right in with all the pains and symptoms
- Michelle: Epsom salt soaks .. I don’t know what makes these soaks feel so good, but I love them.
- Kerrie Added Nice hot Epsom salt bath always helps me in the winter, unfortunately just moved to a house with a super shallow bath tub. So, a hot tub may be on my Christmas wish list this year.
- Heather Added Epsom salt for a warm bath to relax sore muscles. Vitamins D and magnesium. A good heating pads. Lotion like working man’s hand cream.
- Charlette: Hot water bottles. The more the better. One each for your feet, back, tummy and sides.
- Jessica: Compression clothes (i-e socks, leggings, sleeves etc.)
- Shannon: Heated mattress pad. It’s like a giant heating pad for your whole body! It’s the best idea I’ve ever had. I have RA also and it makes my mornings way less stiff and I get moving faster. You can buy them at Walmart, amazon or even directly from vendors. I googled them and found a cheap one. Duel controls is nice though because my husband doesn’t always want heat.
- Connie: Love my large deep heat pad, horse lineament (yes, real horse lineament for my muscular pain), Advil, I own lots of different pajamas so I can feel as comfortable as possible. I stay in my pajamas, basically. I’m currently taking tea pills of Plum Flower “The Great Mender” for pain and mobility help. Wouldn’t even want to be without them. They really seemed to help my back pain and left me with a lot of knee pain and moderate muscle pain. Have only been taking them for a month but have already noticed some relief in those areas of my body and I was able to do more things until a change of weather causes a flare.
Could sound crazy but for better sleep I sleep with a selenite crystal and it helps me. After removing myself from prescribed medications, I tried many things because the side effects made me worse rather than better and the list of prescribed medicines continued to grow while my brain function continued to decline. I still have fibro-fog but at least I don’t wonder if I am developing dementia / Alzheimer’s anymore. I find that sometimes I’m at a loss for words (finding the right words to express myself can be a challenge) but I’ve been diagnosed with ADHD inattention so maybe that’s why this happens. My humidifier and lavender oil are another thing I wouldn’t want to be without. This helps with dry mouth, dried up nostrils, and calming m is the lavender oil.
I’m grateful that I live in Florida and don’t have to contend with the extreme cold, but any changes in weather can and often affect my fibromyalgia pain levels to some degree every day, so every day is different and I’m learning to take my depression every day because it’s too simple. Living this way for 19 years has caused and does cause anxiety and depression… I take pure root Kava on my worst days to help relieve that. I take omega 3 fish oil, glycinate magnesium and multivitamin too. That’s all my must haves I suppose.
Dress to match the weather
Taut clothing can often be a problem for people with symptoms of fibromyalgia, so go for loose-fitting and lukewarm clothes. Dressing in layers will allow you to live toasty and adjust quickly if you get too warm, by removing a coat. Make sure to have the correct clothing, such as gloves, hats, scarves and waterproof boots, to help fight the cold when you also must go outside. Long undergarments under your clothing can also have a big impact on reducing the discomfort, as well as therapy help. For people with fibromyalgia, wearing t-shirts, night clothing, or long underwear made of fur can be as beneficial as medicine to relieve pain levels.
1st is Wear layers
For patients with fibromyalgia, wearing layers in cold weather is helpful because it helps you to adapt to changing weather conditions, particularly when you go from the outside to the indoors and vice versa. You should wear layers externally to remain lukewarm, but when you go into the house you take off some external layers so that you don’t get inflamed which can become a cause.
2nd is Be vigilant about sweat
Blot off the suddenness and turn to dried up clothing as soon as possible when you find yourself sweating in winter. Nothing induces chills that are more like symptoms of fibromyalgia than being soaked by your own sweat.
3rd is Take a warm bath at night
Before bedtime, taking a lukewarm or hot shower is a relaxing practice that you might prefer just because it is fun. Keep those baths unique. Hold candles just beside the water. But aside from being just a soothing pastime, a warm bath may also have healing benefits for patients with fibromyalgia. The lukewarm water will strip the coldness from your bones and will let you feel relaxed. Relieving those bone-chilling winters will reduce the pain levels enough for you to float into a calming sleep. Taking warm bath every night will have the secondary effect of warming your bones and eliminating any cold that is causative to ache and symptoms of fibromyalgia.
4th is Stay dry
Having outdoor exercise is great for everyone’s physical condition, even for people with fibromyalgia and even when the temperatures are freezing. Nevertheless, patients with fibromyalgia need to use watchfulness to get sudden, especially during the winter. When the temperatures are frozen, sweat will cool on the skin easily, which can make you feel very cold and find it hard to warm up again. Go ahead and take advantage of an afternoon ice skating or if you need to spade the snow; working up a sweat is good for you. Only make sure that you switch back to dry clothing as soon as possible.
5th is Try hand warmers
Hand warmers which generate heat when you open them can also ease the symptoms of fibromyalgia. You can buy goods in the store’s outdoor or camping sector that you pop open and use for heat generation. Such hand warmers will help keep your hands warm when out of the building. Since contact with cold triggers ache in the hands and fingers for many victims of fibromyalgia, having access to freedom from cold as soon as possible is important.
6th is Say no to the nightcap
Drinking alcohol is a terrible thought, especially during the winter, for most fibromyalgia victims. Alcohol dilates the blood vessels and can cause you to lose heat even more quickly than normal.
These routine techniques are supposed to help alleviate symptoms. Nonetheless, if you notice that winter flares make you unhappy, you may need to think about a switch to a warmer, drier environment. Granted, this is not a solution that will work for everyone, but it’s worth considering if your quality of life declines for three or more months of the year.
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Fibro Women Blogs
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Chronic Illness Blogs
Official Fibromyalgia Blogs
- what happens when fibromyalgia flares up during winter via The Chronic Body Pain
- Fibromyalgia and Winter Blues: Finding Your ‘Hygge’ by Jessie Arnold via The Mighty