Fibromyalgia

Showering with Fibromyalgia: Could you be Causing more Pain?

Showering with fibromyalgia

When you are first told that the pain and tiredness that you have is due to having fibromyalgia, it can be devastating.

You are going to find that this new diagnosis could mean that you have to change the way in which you live your life.

Everything that you do, even the most mundane of activities, can make a difference in how you feel later.

Even a shower could be something that causes more pain or even makes the symptoms of fibromyalgia flare up more than they already are.

Fibromyalgia is something that affects numerous people. The key in having this illness is learning what you can do to lessen the symptoms while still maintaining the life that you have always dreamed of having.

There are numerous people in the world who are functioning with fibromyalgia easily and they are still doing what they always want to do. How can you be one of these people?

Realize There are Obstacles

One of the first thing that the person needs to realize is that there are going to obstacles that you must learn to deal with.

Whether you attack these obstacles head on or you learn what you can do and what you need to pace yourself with, you will find that your life is going to be better for learning this control.

There are several obstacles that you may have to come to realize in order to gain more control over your life. Some of these obstacles may include:

  • What was your regular workout routine like? It could be you have to change this.
  • Did you work in a physically demanding job? If so, it may be time to look for something else.
  • You may have to start getting more sleep-in order to give your body the rest that it needs

These are the most common obstacles that people think of when they are told that they do have fibromyalgia.

However, did you know that something as mundane as taking a shower could require that you change your way of doing this.

Fibromyalgia and shower pain

A Shower Means Exertion

When you step into the shower, most often you are not thinking about how much exertion this is going to require, but it does.

We often link a shower with relaxation, but if you look at all that you do in the shower, it does take some exertion.

For example, you are standing the entire time, you are going to be doing a fair amount of bending stretching and reaching while you are lathering and washing your body.

For those who have fibromyalgia they often find that these repetitive movements are almost as if they have run a marathon.

While it should not make a person tired, this is just one of the issues that fibromyalgia patients have to deal with.

Showers can Promote Too Much Relaxation

Is too much relaxation something that a person should worry about? If you have fibromyalgia, then yes this is something that you need to worry about.

This is especially true if you are taking a shower in the morning before your day gets going. Why is this?

For those who have fibromyalgia they often find that they are tired constantly. This tired feeling is normal when dealing with fibromyalgia, but a shower can make this tired feeling even more pronounced due to the way it makes a person relax.

If you are taking a shower first thing in the morning, you want to be woken up, not relaxed and falling to sleep all day long.

The Temperature can be an Issue

Who doesn’t like to take a nice, hot, soothing shower to relax those muscles and basically rejuvenate us? Most everyone!

However, for fibromyalgia patients, the temperature of the water can cause massive issues.

There are those patients who report that with a hot shower, they start to sweat and they continue to deal with their body temperature getting out of hand all day.

Other people find that the actual tempter of the water hurts their skin and feels as though they are being stuck by thousands of needles in their body.

The Shower Could Cause a Bout of Dizziness

One of the small issues that fibromyalgia patients deal with is called orthostatic intolerance. What is this?

This basically means that the person gets dizzy upon standing up. This is due to the blood pressure dropping at an abnormal rate.

When stepping into a shower, the hot water can cause the body temperature to go up or down and then this can cause the blood pressure to fluctuate.

In addition, the constant movement while in the shower can also result in the person getting dizzy.

Those patients who do get dizzy in the shower are more likely to fall and suffer an injury.

Increased Nerve Responses

This is one issue that we have touched on beforehand. The pressure of the shower water on your skin is going to cause pain for many fibromyalgia sufferers.

However, there is a name for this problem. This is called allodynia. This is classified as pain that is caused by something that normally shouldn’t hurt.

The pressure of the water is going to cause the pain, and the nerves become overstimulated meaning that you may still feel the pain for many hours to come.

It can make your entire day miserable if you are taking your shower in the morning, or it can affect your ability to sleep if you take this shower before bed.

How to Counteract these Shower Issues

One of the key aspects of knowing how to counteract these shower issues is knowing how you react to the shower.

You are going to want to look at what issues you are finding when you do take a shower and make a mental note of what these issues are.

From here, you can start to make changes to find a way to still get clean without causing your fibromyalgia to act up more. We do have a few suggestions for how to make a few changes:

  1. Consider taking a shower at night if this overly relaxes you.
  2. A bath could be a great way to avoid the exertion that a shower involves.
  3. Try to avoid extremely hot or cold temperatures in the water to avoid nerve sensitivities.
  4. If you still want to take a shower then consider a shower stool so that you must do less bending and stretching that can cause dizziness.

A few other tips that could help with taking a shower and dealing with fibromyalgia:

  • Be sure to use a hydrating lotion or oil after a shower since dry skin is often an issue that fibromyalgia sufferers have.
  • Always pat your skin dry instead of rubbing to avoid stimulating the skin too much.
  • Be sure to avoid getting the bathroom too steamy as this can make it harder to get your body temperature under control.

If at any time while taking a shower you start to feel as though you are getting dizzy or sick, be sure to sit down.

You will want to talk with your doctor about this as he or she may be able to better help with this condition.

Comments

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2 Comments

  • Taking a bath instead of a shower is not necessarily a good alternative considering that you have to lift your entire body weight to get out of the tub. I cannot take baths for this reason as the pain in my hands, wrists, and shoulders are too excruciating to push myself up and out of the tub.

  • I completely agree with Tara. Its a dangerous alternative for many. Marine baths, anyone?

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