Medications and Treatment for Fibromyalgia

Medications and Treatment for Fibromyalgia

If you suffer from fibromyalgia, or you know someone that does, you may have been looking at the various ways that you can deal with the pain and pressure that happens as a result of the disease. So what treatments are out there? What medications might you be put on if you’re dealing with the problems that are related to fibromyalgia? Here’s a brief look at some of the treatments that are utilized for fibromyalgia symptoms.


Since we are still working on figuring out what causes fibromyalgia in the first place, it can be rather difficult to try and figure out the best way to move forward with your treatment plan. So, instead of actually being able to deal with the disorder itself, doctors will have to work with you in order to help you overcome the symptoms that you’re dealing with. In this section, we’re going to take a look at what medications are usually used to help with what parts of the disorder, while at the same time giving you an idea of how they work to deal with the overall disorder.


Anticonvulsants are, essentially, medications that stop seizures. Even though seizures are not related to fibromyalgia, these medications that are intended to treat epilepsy are regularly helpful in diminishing certain sorts of pain as well. Gabapentin (Neurontin, Gralise) is some of the time accommodating in diminishing fibromyalgia manifestations, while pregabalin (Lyrica) was the first medication affirmed by the Food and Drug Administration to treat fibromyalgia.

There are others that are also used nowadays, but the ones that we have mentioned here are among the most commonly used ones that are on the market. If you are dealing with extreme pain that is related to your fibromyalgia, then you may be put on anticonvulsants in order to be able to function more easily. Ask your doctor about your options and to see if this may be an option that you can pursue for your pain symptoms.


Antidepressants are incredibly common for use in all sorts of afflictions, and they have been found to be useful in assuaging fibromyalgia pain. They are also very helpful if you have sleeping issues related to your fibromyalgia; instead of taking a sleeping pill and an antidepressant, many doctors will try to find a two in one solution that will work for you in all of the ways that you need it to. The reason that antidepressants work is because they adjust serotonin and other brain chemicals that are related to dulling and soothing pain. Milnacipran (Savella) and Duloxetine (Cymbalta) may help to do a number of different things that are connected with fibromyalgia, including reducing the amount of fatigue and pain that you feel. Your specialist might prescribe amitriptyline or fluoxetine (Prozac) to help with your sleep issues as well. Let’s take a look at each of the main categories of antidepressants that may be used for your fibromyalgia, and how they may help out.

– Elavil, Amitril, and other tricyclic antidepressants are frequently recommended for fibromyalgia, however numerous individuals don’t care for their reactions (many people notice weight gain, dizziness, and tiredness when they take these sorts of antidepressants). At low dosages, these drugs don’t help with anxiety or depression, which fibromyalgia patients regularly have. In any case, this sort of antidepressant can play a role in helping reduce the effects of insomnia and other disorders.

– The serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, which are usually referred to as SNRI’s, help ease fibromyalgia pain, whether the patient is dealing with the symptoms of depression or not. SNRIs may include Effexor and Cymbalta. The main SNRI that is endorsed by the FDA to treat fibromyalgia pain is Cymbalta, but others are also recommended for use. Effexor is, likewise, used to help reduce the pain that is associated with fibromyalgia, as is the new drug, Savella. A quick thought and warning regarding SNRIs: These medications can’t be utilized if the person in question takes a kind of medication called an MAOI, which stands for monoamine oxidase inhibitor, or has glaucoma. In those cases, you may have to seek out SSRI’s or other antidepressants for use instead.

– Research demonstrates that specific serotonin reuptake inhibitors (better known as SSRI’s) such as Zoloft and Paxil, help a number of fibromyalgia patients with insomnia, overall general well being, and pain reduction – with lesser impacts on those painful areas and anything related to motion from fibromyalgia. However, exploration shows the SSRIs aren’t as successful as the SNRIs in treating fibromyalgia, but if you can’t take the SNRI’s, then it’s good for you to have the option to take the SSRI’s instead.

– A note about combining antidepressants: On occasion, a mix of antidepressants can help diminish muscle pain, tension, and depression in fibromyalgia. Patients additionally get more tranquil slumber, feel less exhaustion, and have better wellbeing in general. In those cases where your doctor gives you a combination of antidepressants, they will do everything that they can to make sure that you don’t have any reactions. If you start to see any issues from your antidepressants, talk to your doctor as soon as possible to prevent any further issues.

Medications and Treatment for Fibromyalgia

Pain Relievers

Many people don’t know how to deal with the pain that they’re coping with as a result of their fibromyalgia. Because of that, you want to make sure that you have a way to make the pain lessen. Pain relievers are usually used in conjunction with some of the other medications that we listed here. Also, they can help to dull the pain that you may not have otherwise been able to dull or reduce with the other types of medications that we have talked about in this section.

Pain relievers, for example, Ultracet and Ultram can help reduce the number, alleviate the pain in those moments where you get sharp pains in certain areas of your body, and diminish muscle fits or spasms that you may be trying to cope with. The muscle relaxant Flexeril can help diminish pain and enhance the sleep that you’re trying to get more of. Injections of painkillers and/or cortisone at some of your worst trigger areas can be particularly successful in breaking cycles of muscle spasms and painb. Many doctors will try to avoid using injections if they feel like you can go without them, but in some cases, it’s the best option for you to try in order to relieve your pain.

Over-the-counter pain relievers, for example, naproxen sodium (Aleve, others), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or acetaminophen (Tylenol, others), may be useful. Your specialist may propose another type of pain reliever, for example, tramadol (Conzip, Ultram, etc). Opiates are not usually used for fibromyalgia patients, on the grounds that they can cause people to become addicted to them if they are used too often, and may even compound the pain that you’re feeling.

All that being said, the medications that are used to help with your fibromyalgia are going to vary on a number of factors. It could be based on the pain that you’re dealing with, or it could be based on what your doctor prefers to use with various fibromyalgia patients. Even though the medications that we mentioned here are the most commonly used, there may be others that your doctor suggests so that you can better deal with the health issues that you’re working with. If you have any questions about these medications or want to consider trying some of the others that we mentioned here, make sure to talk to your primary care physician so that you get the information that you need, while at the same time ensuring that you’re getting the right care as well.

Other Treatments

Of course, there are a wide variety of other treatments that you can try as well. You aren’t just stuck using the basic treatments that are “typical” for these sorts of disorders. There are lots of different things that you can do in order to help reduce the pain that you’re dealing with naturally. Even if you’re not into “holistic health” methods, these can still play a pretty big role in helping you to find pain relief and relief from your other fibromyalgia symptoms. Let’s take a look at these based on the different categories that they fall into – those related to insomnia and fatigue; those related to exercise and physical therapy; those related to mental health; and other miscellaneous treatments that may be utilized in order to reduce the more frustrating symptoms of the disorder.

Treatments related to fatigue and insomnia  

Fibromyalgia frequently disturbs rest because of pain, restless leg disorder, or different reasons. Because of that, people who have fibromyalgia usually have a great need for help with their sleeping routine. Here are some tips that you can use in order to make sure that you get a good night’s sleep more often, even if you’re dealing with fibro pain.

– The first thing that you can do is put together an appropriate sleeping environment that encourages you to rest. Attempt to set a proper sleeping plan by going to bed at the same time every night and, in the meantime, staying away from taking a nap.

– Put together a sleep time routine – perhaps taking a short walk and a hot shower. Also, make your room helpful for slumber by keeping it dim, cool, and free of diversions like TV and PCs. This is called “cleaning up” your sleeping, or making your sleep routine more hygienic. Less diversion means that you’re going to have an easier time going to bed.

– Don’t smoke, drink alcohol, or drink caffeine. These can all make it a lot more difficult for you to sleep at night, thus causing you even more difficulty than you already have when you’re dealing with your fibromyalgia symptoms.

– Try to get more activity during the day. Even though we’re going to be discussing this concept a little bit more when we get to the next section (which is about exercise and physical therapy), it can also help with sleep. The more energy that you use during the day, the more likely you will be able to sleep at night because you’re just going to be more worn out than you would have been otherwise.

If you have other ways that help you get to sleep, go ahead and try them out as well. All of these are just suggestions; if you have your own way of doing things that works, then you will want to throw those things into your daily routine as well.

Exercise and Physical Therapy

Many people ask why they have to exercise as part of their fibromyalgia treatment plan. This is actually a really good question; a lot of people think that, because they’re dealing with a lot of pain as a result of their fibromyalgia, that they don’t have to “make it worse” through exercise. The truth of the matter is, it actually helps you more if you’re out and about and moving. Here are some exercises that you can try in order to get the benefits without all the pain and stiffness that you may associate with physical therapy and exercise routines.

– Aerobics: Consider beginning with a warm water treatment program, particularly if your pain levels are truly high. It’s simpler on the muscles and joints to be in the water, and the warmth from the water is actually helpful when it comes to reducing muscle pain and weakness. It is probably the easiest way to get started with a treatment plan. When you have made strides with your water aerobics plan, you may move to land-based exercises two to three times each week. Stroll at a pace where you can still hold a conversation with other people while you walk. Explore vigorous exercises that you appreciate and go at an agreeable pace that will help you to get the benefits without adding the stress.

– Isometric Strengthening: Keeping up your strength is vital, but you don’t want to do it if you’re starting to see yourself get weaker as a result of it. Isometrics include squeezing against a stationary item (or you can utilize both arms or legs as resistance if you don’t have an item that you can squeeze) for six seconds while breathing to verify your muscles have enough oxygen. It doesn’t devour a lot of your energy, yet doing this for about 10 minutes every day can make it really easy for you to keep your muscle mass up.

– Tai Chi: This development structure is facilitated with profound breathing and relaxing. You ought to maintain a strategic distance from kicks and forceful developments that may overstretch your muscles. Remain stationary until you pick up confidence. Then, as you get used to what you’re doing, try some other things. If you start to notice that you’re losing energy, let up on your routine a bit. If you feel like you can push more without any problems, do that too.

– Yoga: Gentle extending developments while concentrating on musical breathing can help extricate muscles, enhance physical capacity, ease your muscle tension, and lessen the fibromyalgia pain. It is critical to discover a therapeutic sort of yoga class with an educator who will suit your particular needs or limitations. Many yoga teachers know how to help people with fibromyalgia, but talk to them ahead of time to see how they can help you and what they may integrate to help reduce your pain even more.

Emotional Wellness Care

Your mental health is a huge part of your overall well being, and if you’re dealing with fibromyalgia symptoms, you may notice that you’re dealing with a lot of those problems on a regular basis. Here are some quick tips that you can use in order to make sure that your mental health is in tip top shape, even on your roughest days.

– Reduce stress. Add to an arrangement to maintain a strategic distance from or limit overexertion and emotional anxiety. Permit yourself time every day to unwind. That may mean figuring out how to say no without feeling bad for doing so. Be that as it may, make an effort not to change your routine totally. Individuals who quit work or drop all action have a tendency to do feel more guilt than do the individuals who continue doing the same things on a daily basis. Attempt stress administration procedures, for example, profound breathing activities or yoga and meditation techniques.

– Get enough rest on a nightly basis. We talked about this above, but it’s also really important for your mental health. Since weakness is one of the primary attributes of fibromyalgia, getting enough sleep on a nightly basis is vital. If you need more hints for how you can keep up with good sleep habits, go back to the section above where we discuss sleeping.

– Pace yourself. Keep the things that you’re doing on a daily basis on an even level. In the event that you do way too much on your good days, you may deal with a lot of pain on your off days. Control implies not pushing yourself too hard on your great days, but rather moreover it implies not limiting yourself or doing too little on the days when side effects flare.

– Take time out for yourself. Many people don’t take care of themselves, especially when they’re trying to deal with all of the other things related to fibromyalgia. That being said, make sure that you take a little bit of time in order to be able to rest and relax. Hang out with those you love, eat good meals, and have times where you have fun. Just make sure that you do that while, at the same time, making sure that you’re not pushing yourself too hard when you do.

Other Treatments

There are a wide variety of other treatments that you can consider as well. Here are just a few of them that can help with your general symptoms of fibromyalgia.

Medications and Treatment for Fibromyalgia

– Massage: Patients rate a massage as their top nondrug treatment for treating the muscle pain of fibromyalgia. You will need to find someone who can issue you an exceptionally gentle (low weight and low impact) rub until you know how you will react.

– Osteopathic Manipulation: Osteopaths are prepared in a mixed bag of hands-on ways to deal with simplicity muscle pain. An illustration is strain-counterstrain (or positional discharge), which permits the tight muscles to relax in the areas that are causing you the most pain. You can figure out how to do some of these strategies at home. Your physical therapist can give you some hints and teach you how to do it at home.

– Neuro-solid Adjustment: Small muscles close to the numerous joints and vertebrae along the spine could be included in the improvement of myofascial trigger focuses. Delicate control of the spine and adjacent muscles may offer alleviation for low back pain and certain sorts of cerebral pains, in spite of the fact that the system is not completely understood.6

– Acupuncture: This treatment option can decrease pain and weakness, however the outcomes for fibromyalgia may be different depending on how your body reacts with pain. Verify that you work with an authorized professional who has experience treating fibromyalgia. Exploration demonstrates that the extra utilization of acupuncture with other types of therapy creates better results. There are other acupunctures techniques and warm water therapies that you can try as well.

As time goes on, we’re going to continue to find treatments that we can use in order to help relieve the pain and stress that are often associated with fibromyalgia. If you have fibromyalgia and you want to find relief from the pain that you’re feeling, contact a doctor or another medical professional today in order to get more information. Getting connected with a medical professional can help you start to put together a treatment plan and you can get all of your questions and concerns answered.

Further reading:

Treating Fibromyalgia Pain: Medication Options

Fibromyalgia Treatment Strategies

Fibromyalgia Treatments and drugs