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Living With Fibromyalgia - Online Support Group

Has anyone tried a meditation practice as a medical treatment?

#1

Hi,

I am beginning to try meditation as a treatment for fibro. So far, I have started meditating about twenty minutes a day, but I want to increase that to an hour a day (and maybe more) to see if it would make a big difference. The medications that I’ve been prescribed throughout my life for various health issues have sometimes helped, but have also created big additional problems for me, so I am going to give meditation a try.

If anyone has tried an intense meditation routine, I have some questions for you: Did it help? If so, how much? How long did you meditate and how often? What type of meditation did you use? Also, on days when I am in pain, it feels like torture to sit quietly - how do people handle that?

Thank you for your input! :slight_smile:

#2

I have a meditation app on my phone and have been using it mainly at night to help me fall asleep rather then tossing and turning. Also on my days off work to help motivate me. The app has a bunch of different subjects and the speakers are good. I have noticed that I am sleeping better but I am not sure if it’s the meditation or the fact I switched to a FODMAP diet. The diet helps with the IBS and could also help with my sleep. I don’t plan on stopping either anytime soon. I hope it works for you like it has me

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#3

If you are new to meditation, I would recommend doing it under somebody’s guidance. Trust me, it can bring up stuff, physically or emotionally that you may not know how to handle. I have done a vipassana 10 day course (twice). They only teach the technique in the 10 day course and I found the reasons for that are quite scientific. It’s free, and works on voluntary donations. Both times I came back feeling really good. The pain i felt during the period of meditation was awful to say the least. And emotionally it’s very hard to get through the 10 days. But by the end of it, it was just so different that it’s hard to explain. Mentally, I was in so much a better place than Ive ever been and physically I felt like human. The harder part of it though was the regular practice. I travel around so it was harder for me to stick to a routine of doing it. I now sit every now and then for 20 minutes at most. I am thinking of going for another 10 day course to help me get back on it. I have tried other forms of meditation and this is the only one I keep going back to. If you want to know more about it, please feel free to ask. Good luck.

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#4

Thank you for your comments. The 10 day meditation training sounds great. I have definitely noticed that meditating is bringing up a lot of difficult stuff. I also have PTSD which I believe is somehow related to the fibro. I’ve noticed that some days meditating helps to put me in a really great place mentally and emotionally while other days it brings up a ton of anxiety and traumatic memories. When it brings up bad feelings, I just meditate for a a little while and then stop. I feel like it’s helpful for me to know what is simmering in my subconscious but I don’t sit with it for too long or it takes over and overwhelms me. On the whole, so far it is helping me emotionally, but I haven’t been super disciplined about it because I realized pretty quickly that it could destabilize me emotionally on certain days.

#5

I think the fibro for me kicked in after a period of intense trauma too and I believe PTSD is related to Fibro. If you are practicing meditation already, you might want to find an experienced person who can support and guide you. The more you meditate, the more your subconscious will throw stuff out that you may or maynot be ready to deal with. Meditation is awesome if it’s done the right way. Wishing you all the very best and love.

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#6

Thanks, Ruchi. Do you know of any good books, articles, blogs, etc. to read for guidance on meditation for people with PTSD? Or do you know where I could find someone to guide me through it? It definitely brings up some dark stuff, so I would like help.
Thanks!
Julie :slight_smile:

#7

Hey Julie, I personally don’t read much about meditation. My view is that it contradicts the meditation practice. When we read about someone’s experience or ideas, we start expecting that same experiences, which in itself is a counterproductive measure for meditation practice. Hope I am making sense. There are many vipassana meditation retreats in US. Once you learn the technique, you will know about people around you that can guide you. They also have weekend courses once you complete the 10 days course. If finding the 10 days is hard, I’d suggest finding a yoga studio nearby, preferably not the power yoga kinds. True yoga masters put emphasis on various breathing techniques called pranayama as much as on physical aspects. This should to some extent help with the stuff that you are dealing with from meditation. Long time ago in India, yoga is thought as precursor to meditation, i.e. to strengthen the body and mind to withstand the meditation experiences. But you’ll need a real yoga teacher, someone who practiced for years as opposed to someone who just did a certificate course. If you can’t find anyone, please see the link below…This is someone I know who I believe is authentic in his way of yoga teaching. Some of his videos are in english…hope this helps


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#8

I learned to meditate as a teen. It was much more loosely structured than than guided meditations available today, it was more about relaxing and turning off than anything else. I think it does help with any number of things in your life.

A very easy meditation method is as follows:

  1. Lay on your back comfortably (yes, it’s okay to lay in bed!)
  2. You may use instrumental music to block daily external noises
  3. Think of your body as a balloon
  4. Inhale slowly and fully to a count of 10 (or however long you can do comfortably) and image your body inflating like a balloon as you do so
  5. Hold your breath for a count of 10 (or however long is comfy)
  6. Exhale to a count of 10 (or however long is comfy) and image your body deflating flat onto the bed as you do so
  7. Repeat
  8. Focus only on you breathing, let everything else go

It will take practice to be able to relax into meditation but there’s no goal here, no best time to beat, or anything like that, this is about learning to tune out and relax.

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