Those who know me, understand that cursing is not part of my vocabulary. However, I’d like to suggest Fibromyalgia as an additional “F” word. Fibro had me cursing- not out loud, but in my head- this past Friday morning. My feet literally could not touch the floor without causing me excruciating pain. My right heel felt as if it were hit with a bat a thousand times by Miguel Cabrera as he sends one over the wall. I spent two full days walking around on my toes- great for the shape of my calves, but eventually this limp will cause pain in my hips and back too.
When fibro strikes, my brain focuses only on the pain and frustration. I lose my usual intelligence and positive outlook and often focus on the problem instead of a solution. I admit as the years pass, I am getting better in my approach and remember ways to treat my symptoms faster than in previous years. This heel pain was new, though, so I did not have a plan of attack. It took me approximately three days of applying arnica gel, wearing a compression sleeve designed to help plantar fasciitis and smearing lavender oil on my foot to realize, I needed to use a different approach.
Throughout my fitness training career, I have helped others recover from injuries and listened to their PT stories. I have a solid grasp on what works and works quickly! Once my fibro-fog cleared, I decided to try a basic first aid approach. (Keep in mind, that I have not injured my heel. I did not do anything out of the ordinary or kick the ground in a temper tantrum. I simply woke with my heel in pain.) I iced my heel and kept it elevated. These techniques decreased the inflammation and reduced my pain so I could remember my secret weapon- Kinesiology Tape, KT-Tape!
KT-Tape is stretchy tape that adheres to your skin for 3 to 5 days. I use Mueller’s latex-free tape to avoid an allergic reaction. You can get it wet and perform normal functions. Typically, three strip of KT-Tape are positioned in a certain pattern on the injured area to provide muscular support, decrease pain and increase circulation. The increase in circulation helps to eliminate toxins and inflammation. Since my fibromyalgia is random, I have found relief with the tape placed on my ribs, back and shoulder.
The pain relief I felt when my husband and I applied it to my foot was immediate. I could place a little pressure on it which took the strain off my ankles and knees. It’s been a week and I have reapplied the tape once for support, but I am thankful it is working. What I love most about KT-Tape is that it’s natural. I did not have to digest any pain medications or apply topical steroids to my skin. My approach to fibromyalgia has been completely natural so far and I aim to keep it that way for as long as possible.
If you are dealing with random fibromyalgia pain or have injured yourself through sports, exercise or overuse, I suggest KT-tape for natural pain relief. Speak with your doctor about the best way to apply the tape- most chiropractors are skilled in this as well.
Fibromyalgia sufferers need a large tool box to combat all the symptoms associated with this “F” word, but with a little time and effort, it’s worth it!