The most common symptoms are pain in the muscles, ligaments, and tendons, the soft fibrous tissues of the body. Although the muscles hurt everywhere, they are not the only cause of the pain. The whole body is affected and symptoms are greatly magnified by malfunctions in the way the nervous system processes pain. Chronic pain, for some people can be very debilitating and they can not work or leave the home, disturbed sleep, insomnia, too much sleep, fatigue, lack of focus and concentration, headaches and / or migraines, jaw pain, IBS-irritable bowel syndrome are also commonly experienced. Symptoms can wax and wane from to day to day and through the day. There are many support sights on the internet that can give you more detailed information. My focus will be Aromatherapy as a treatment.
How Aromatherapy can benefit those that have fibromyalgia
I would like to share with you my experiences and the essential oils that I have personally used to reduce symptoms of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue as they can go hand in hand.
These recommendations are for those that have been correctly diagnosed by their GP or specialist through the appropriate methods.
Here I will give symptoms and then recommendations for essential oils and methods of application. It is important to understand that whilst I give you this information that we are individuals and what works for one person may not needlessly work for all. This does not mean do not try, more that it would be preferable for you to seek out a fully qualified Aromatherapist, who then may be able to personalize your treatments as that is one of the amazing gifts of Aromatherapy.
Many essential oils are analgesics, therefore they can reduce pain. Following are ones that I have used. These oils are also very good for reducing inflammation.
Basil, rosemary, ginger, lavender, chamomile, black pepper, clary sage, peppermint, cypress, juniper, sweet marjoram.
These essential oils can be used for muscle aches, pain, stiffness and hypersensitivity. I highly recommend that you use Aromatherapy and essential oils as a preventive treatment rather than waiting until you are in pain. Using them on a daily basis, and intermittently changing the oils will result in a more positive outcome, as I believe your body then does not have the opportunity to build a resistance to the chosen essential oils.
Oils that are known to be energizing and invigorating:
Grapefruit, juniper, cypress, petitgrain, black pepper, peppermint, basil, lemon tea tree, lemon Eucalyptus
Insomnia or disturbed sleep
Vetiver, lemon, mandarin, sweet orange, bergamot, lime, sandalwood, jasmine, rose, neroli, ylang ylang, cedarwood, clary sage, rosewood, patchouli, spikenard, rhu khus, lavender.
Memory and concentration
Basil, peppermint, rosemary, lemon, spearmint, black pepper, ginger, cypress.
Depression, anxiety, stress and tension
Most essentials are excellent for these symptoms, once again I recommend the aromas you are attracted to and prefer the smell as this kind of response will immediately uplift your emotions.
If you do experience these symptoms is essential that you seek professional advice!
Aromatherapy massage is a very nurturing massage which promotes lymph and blood circulation, boosts the immune system, is balancing to the nervous system, promotes relaxation; reduce muscle tension, pain, stress and anxiety.
Usually recommended as a gentle massage however I personally prefer a very firm massage as many people, it really is a personal choice and essential that you discuss this with your therapist before the treatment has attended.
Depending on how chronic and severe your symptoms are will play a role in the initial results, like many orthodontic treatments Aromatherapy is not a quick fix. Every person is an individual the results will vary from person to person. The choice of essentials oils can vary quite dramatically. Because of this Aromatherapy and essential oils can be tailor to suit your specific needs and this is really a wonderful thing to be able to have these options.
If it is possible initially it would be advisable to have weekly treatments, then fortnightly and then monthly. This may not always be possible for a number of reasons. Do what you can and try some different methods of application at home between massages.
Some ways that you can self treat
Bathing a luxury for many of us and you may not even have a bath, so ask a friend or family if you can use their. Bathing is a wonderful way of treating many different conditions and many different conditions have the same or similar symptoms.
Muscular aches and pains, aching joints, stiffness, stress, tension, depression, insomnia.
When choosing to use a bathing method, you do not need any more than 10 drops of essential oil in total draw your bath, add the chosen essential oils and agitate before you hop in. A 10 -15 min soak is all you need. I love t have either essential oils in the burner or incense burning with soft relaxing music in the background. Be sure to use an alarm clock if you have a tendency to fall as sleep!
Foot baths are another wonderful, easy alternative and only take 10 minutes. If you need to give yourself a kick start in the morning or really anytime I love using grapefruit. Try this when having a shower another easy application for example: before hoping into the shower grab a face cloth wet it down and add a few drops of grapefruit essential oil. When you get into the shower place your face clothe down on the floor of the shower and start to stomp on it, you will have absorption occurring through the souls of your feet and also by breathing as the molecules are taken up by the steam from the hot water. It leaves me feeling quite Invigorated; grape fruit is excellent for strengthening the immune system!
Bath blends for relation
4 drops neroli, 4 drops bergamot, 2 drops geranium
3 drops vetiver, 4 drops rosewood, 2 drops sweet orange
Bath blend for aching body, also relaxing
3 drops clary sage, 3 drops lavender, 4 drops chamomile, 3 drops sweet marjoram
3 Cypress drops, 2 basil drops, 2 drops rosemary
Topical application of your favorite oils will uplift your emotions and from another perspective will nourish and moisturize your skin! Depending on your personal preference you can use a vegetable oil, coconut oil, cream or lotion. To blend you can use 50 ml of your chosen carrier / base and 25 drops in total of your chosen essential oils.
Below are 2 day time blends and 2 night time blends.
10 drops grapefruit, 5 drops petitgrain, 5 drops geranium and 5 drops lemon
10 drops neroli, 5 drops rosewood, 5 drops patchouli or sandalwood
5 drops vetiver, 7 drops rosewood, 3 drops mandarin
5 drops rose, 5 drops jasmine, 5 drops frankincense
Using a burner or diffuser I recommend using the same oils for the specific conditions.
Eg sleepy time blend-vetiver, rosewood and geranium.
Focus and concentration- spearmint, rosemary and basil.
Here is a small article I posted on my blog, just a few weeks ago. Although I know some of you have read it I thought it worth adding to this article.
Aromatherapy is considered to be one of the most consistently successful therapies for treating chronic fatigue syndrome.
Other holistic treatments to consider are nutrition, vitamins and herbs recommended by a qualified Naturopath, and daily exercise for example walking.
Here are some oils that I have used to help reduce some symptoms of chronic fatigue
These can be used safely with a variety of applications which I will give a bit later on. If you are unsure seek the advice of a practicing Aromatherapist and research the essential oils and their contra-indications.
To reduce stress – Lemon, sweet orange, geranium, neroli, jasmine, mandarin, bergamot, ylang ylang, I recommend any aroma that you like as it will elevate your emotions and aid in de-stressing.
Muscular aches and pains – Rosemary, peppermint, clary sage, german chamomile, lavender, cypress, juniper, basil, and marjoram.
To help increase your energy levels – Grapefruit, juniper, cypress, peppermint, rosemary, basil.
I always recommend that you inhale your preferred aromas, it is also important not to overuse essential oils that are strong sedatives like sweet Marjoram, clary sage, sandalwood, valerian and vetiver.
Most essential oils are very good for depression and boosting the immune System. All citrus, geranium, neroli, rose, chamomile, patchouli, frankincense, ylang ylang, basil, peppermint, lemon myrtle.
Insomnia can be a cause of chronic fatigue, oils that can aid in relaxation and sleep – Vetiver, sandalwood, clary sage, lavender, lemon, bergamot, rose, neroli, jasmine, rhu khus, cedarwood, and chamomile.
Raising energy levels – grapefruit, basil, peppermint or rosemary, juniper, spearmint, use as an inhalation.
Immuno-stimulent – rosemary, peppermint, cypress, lemon myrtle or lemon, juniper, lavender, lemon tea tree, daily application as a dressing oil or friction rub (once a week) on your back focusing on the spinal cord.
Insomnia – vetiver, rosewood, sweet orange or rose, geranium, lemon via inhalation, full body or foot bath, diffuser or anoint the souls of your feet.
Muscle pain – clary sage, basil, peppermint or rosemary, sweet marjoram, lavender topical application.
Other Natural therapy treatments to consider are Acupuncture, gentle exercise on a daily basis eg walking, therapeutic massage, relaxation techniques, gentle stretching, good nutrition, herbs and vitamins.