It’s that time of year, when there are lots of bugs doing the rounds! With a condition like fibromyalgia, with increased pain and fatigue, the last thing you need is to catch a cold or the flu.
Unfortunately, if you suffer from fibromyalgia and catch a cold, it’s much more likely to stick around and be hard to shake off. The stress on the body and auto-immune system, caused by fighting off a virus can worsen fibromyalgia symptoms and can even cause a flare up.
So with the winter months on us, we thought that we would look at some ways to help you stay healthy this season:
- This one is the most obvious one. Wherever possible, avoid people who are poorly. If you know that someone is ill, make your excuses and arrange to see them another time. Explain that you are particularly vulnerable and people will understand.
- If you cannot avoid coming into contact with someone who is poorly (perhaps you live with them or you are caring for them), remember to practice good hygiene. Wash your hands frequently, remember not to touch your face, mouth and nose and change hand towels often. If water isn’t available, use a good quality hand sanitizer, which can be bought at any supermarket or chemist.
- Get your flu vaccination. Make an appointment to get your flu jab as soon as it is available. The flu can hit fibromyalgia sufferers harder than others, so make sure you are protected.
- Stick to a good bedtime routine. Sleep problems are a common symptom for fibromyalgia sufferers and can exacerbate symptoms, adding to fatigue and muscle pain. Creating a good, restful bedtime routine and making sure you get as much sleep as possible, can help you stay strong and fight off the winter bugs.
- Boost your immune system by making sure that you get enough rest. December is a busy month with lots to do, but make sure that you take time out to rest and put your feet up occasionally. Maybe plan ahead and create a manageable schedule to cross things off your ‘to do’ list. Wherever possible enlist some help. If you can delegate tasks to others, then that’s great! Just remember to try to avoid taking any long naps during the daytime, as this could affect your sleep pattern during the night.
- Boost your immune system by eating well. It’s easy to indulge in fatty, sweet foods during the festive season, but remember to make sure you get your share of immune-boosting nutrients. Remember to get your five-a-day and eat plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables.
- Consider taking some immune-boosting supplements. Vitamin C is great at helping boost your immune system and is also a great anti-oxidant. SAMe (S-Adenosyl methionine) is a compound that is essential for maintaining a good immune system. SAMe is produced naturally in the body, but the rate it is produced at goes down as we age.
What do you think of these tips? Have you found any of them useful, or do you have any to add. We love to hear of your experiences. Please comment below.
We do not endorse any research, studies or sources mentioned within our blogs and comments. Furthermore, we do not endorse any medical advice provided, and would strongly recommend anyone seeking medical advice to contact their local healthcare provider.