From: Helen Dynda (olddad66@runestone.net)
Thu Sep 21 23:17:16 2000

[] TAKING CONTROL OF YOUR HEALTH...the information ( below ) is from this web site. There is more at the following web site:

http://www.geocities.com/HotSprings/Villa/5998/page8.html " When you are in pain, Only You know where you hurt, how much you hurt, what is working to help the pain, and what is not working for you. It is Your Ultimate decision as to how your healthcare is managed, and who is deciding on the management of that healthcare. You must be the number One person at the head of the TEAM Approach that is to manage your health. " You must have an interdisciplinary TEAM, which can and should include: You, Your Physician, Your Spouse/significant other, Your Therapist, Your Pharmacist, Your Family support system, Your Dietician etc...Establish a partnership with your health care team.

" Keep a Journal to analyze how you are doing, what is working, what is not working for you, what is triggering an increase or decrease in the symptoms that you experience. In this way, you can share it with your team members without relying on a Foggy Brain to remember what is happening. You do not have to write in it everyday if you do not want to, but it will help you to recognize patterns initially so that you can make alterations to your care plan. You will realize how you felt on the darkest days, but that you have moved past that and felt better. It is also great to take to the Dr. so that he can also see patterns, and more objectively help you make changes.

" Nutritional Deficiencies - Many People with Fibromyalgia Syndrome (PWFMS) suffer from Reactive Hypoglycemia. Dr. Paul St. Amand has an excellent diet for controlling hypoglycemia, as well as for losing weight on the stricter version without feeling hungry. Other diets some PWFMS use is the Zone Diet, by Dr. Barry Sears, and the Atkins diets . Both are available on the net.

" Nutritional Supplements - are very beneficial to help stabilize the vitamin, Mineral, Amino Acid and Circulatory deficiencies exhibit through supplementation. I have another site linked on that subject linked below. Basically, keep it natural, with no additives, preservatives, colors, or flavors. Know what is in them. Beward of taking Herbs, unless you really understand them, what you can and cannot take with them, and what their side effects are. Remember that herbs are medicines that the ancients used before medical science began developing them. You must be educated in their use, or you may get into trouble with your health.

" Medications are used by some PWFMS. Recommendation is also to use caution. Many medications such as Narcotics are contra- indicated in PWFMS. Remember that our bodies are not working normally, we do not synthesize chemicals properly, and we do not utilize chemicals sometimes the way the manufacturers intended them to be used by the normal person. No amount of a narcotic medication will completely take away the pain, it may dull it, or put you to sleep, so that you do not perceive the pain as much, but you pay for it with other side effects. There is No Miracle Drug to take away the pain, and cure the disease. Narcotics frequently interfere with Sleep, and we get precious little of the Stage 4 Deep Sleep as it is.

" Mind Work - "Slow Me Down Lord", Physiological Quieting, Walking Meditation, Guided Imagery, Biofeedback and most importantly to me is Prayer Meditation with God. Find a way for your mind to be quieted, so it can rest and relax.

" Body Work - I know you are exhausted and hurting, exercise is the last thing on your mind at this point!! But did you know that through exercising, you are increasing circulation to the starved muscles that are crying out in pain!! Muscles are starved from Poor Circulation. Proper Body Work can result in the Deepening and Slowing of your Breathing, taking in more oxygen, with less effort, breaking up tightened myofascia, diminishing muscle tension in trigger points, as well as providing them with more fuel and oxygen, which equals Less Pain. Now it is imperative that it be the right kind of exercise!! It must be very low impact, cardiovascular are the best for the oxygenation. If you exercise too hard, lactic acid buildups will increase your pain. Slow gentle stretches after a hot shower, or in the shower are good daily. Always warm the muscles before engaging in any kind of a workout. Walking is a great way, if you are able, even if it is on a treadmill. With a treadmill there is less stress, with increased cardiac output. You may walk farther with less stress and get a great cardiac workout. Your Dr, Physical Therapist, Occupational Therapist are all capable of helping you find the best exercise for your specific needs.

" Massage Therapy - is one of my favorite ways to relax and get the kinks worked out. It is important that you get a Certified Massage Therapist who is educated in FMS, Myofascial (gentle) or Craniosacral Therapy. Massage that is too hard will increase your pain, and so will doing too much at a time. The first time that I had a massage, he worked me my neck, arms, upper and lower back. It felt great, but I could not walk out to my car and drive home, I was like a marshmallow, it was as if I had NO strength to put one foot in front of another, so now we work on less areas at a time. Treat Yourself Kindly - find ways to enjoy a treatment, which will decrease your pain, break up tight trigger points. I think it is worth investing in a massage once in awhile to treat myself. Just remember go slowly and gently.

" Have Fun - Dr. Devin says in her book, "that it has been said, that it is pleasure that binds one to existence. To make life more worthwhile, spend more time having fun, engaging in an activity that makes you happy and keeps you totally focused."

" If you quiet your mind, you can deal more effectively with the pain of your symptoms, then you will be more effective in coping with life, which is so precious, and you will not be tossed to and fro emotionally with stressors that happen in your everyday life.

" Support System - gather your support system together, educate your family and friends. Target your efforts. Express yourself clearly without being too emotional or tearful if you can. Assert yourself calmly. Be Firm and Persistent about what you need. Don't forget to care for others, sometimes we get so wrapped up in our pain, we become blind to others needs and pain. Get involved with a FMS Support group in your area. If there isn't one functioning in your area, find out if there are any others there with FMS or CFS and start a group. It helps to have others who are experiencing the same problems, with FMS, I think it validates it in our minds, and lets us know we are not ALONE.

" God Gives us the Dawn of a New Day Each and Every Day to do with what we need to. God also gives us the Strength to get through that Day, If we will only ASK.

" THIS IS THE FIRST DAY OF THE REST OF YOUR LIFE, Make this day Count for a Positive Start in the Right Direction."

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