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How Water Can Help Fibromyalgiafrom:
Although you should take the time to relax, it's also important that you explore other forms of fibromyalgia treatment so you can enjoy your life to the fullest. For instance, hydrotherapy is a unique treatment that has helped many fibromyalgia sufferers find freedom from pain, without all the nasty side effects that accompanies many other treatments.
What is hydrotherapy? Hydrotherapy, also known as balneotherapy, is an alternative treatment that utilizes water as a method for curing illness and maintaining sound health. Hydrotherapy uses different water techniques to alleviate pain, improve circulation and health. Water has always been celebrated for its healing properties and it's effectiveness in treating a variety of physical and mental illnesses. Hydrotherapy has been used for centuries in Europe and Asia.
How does it work? There is not definite answer to this question. However, there are many theories about how hydrotherapy works, most of which are based on the two natural water properties - temperature and buoyancy.
Water is a unique element that has the ability to retain cold and heat in a form that makes it easy for body application. In turn, the water temperature placed on the body has an affect on the way the body functions. Specific temperatures assist in the constriction and dilation of the blood vessels. The change in blood vessels improves circulation, efficient removal of waste, and speeds healing.
The buoyancy of water is also effective for alleviating pain. Water provides support to the entire body and helps to reduce the strain on joints and muscles. In addition, water helps your body heal and find soothing relief because the natural motion of water assists in stimulating touch receptors of the skin. This stimulation creates electronic impulses that encourage the release of diverse hormones and chemicals that promote healing.
The following are different types of hydrotherapy:
Compress - Cold, luke-warm, or hot compresses are used to alleviate pain and promote circulation. The compress is usually a towel that is soaked in the desired water temperature and placed on the affected area. More than one towel can be used to achieve better relief.
Icing - Ice cubes are used to assist in inflammation, swelling and pain reduction. The ice is wrapped in a towel or plastic bag and applied for no more than 20 minutes to the body. This method is repeated every two hours over the course of one day.
Baths - This is the most popular form of hydrotherapy. The baths may either be cold or hot, and are used to reduce stress and give relief to symptoms. The baths usually take place in a whirlpool tub and the body is either partially or completely submerged. Often, special herbs are included in the baths to assist healing.
Baths are the most common form of hydrotherapy for fibromyalgia sufferers. In fact, a six week study that was done on fibromyalgia patients who were given hydrotherapy in the form of therapeutic whirlpool baths two times in one week, found that the participants had improved joint and muscle function, had less pain, and better sleep.
Hydrotherapy is a treatment that is performed by a qualified and licensed hydrotherapist, physical therapist or naturopath. In other words, it is not a treatment that anyone can perform. You must seek this treatment from an experienced professional. Speak to your doctor to learn about hydrotherapy in your community and to find out if this treatment is the right choice for you.
Keep in mind, hydrotherapy isn't the only alternative treatment available for fibromyalgia sufferers. Another alternative and popular method of fibromyalgia pain relief is massage therapy.
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