Thursday, December 10, 2009

Fibro and Massage

Massage is supposed to be a positive experience, right? I used to think so anyway. Sometimes, when I have a lot of muscle tension or painful trigger points, it's not the most pleasant experience but I always used to feel better afterward. Now? Not so much. At least not in the hours right after the massage.

For the last nine months or so, I feel very depressed after getting a massage, to the point where I just want to sit and cry. I have no idea what I want to cry about, I just feel really sad.  And, I find myself reaching for comfort food, which isn't something I don't do all that often.

I had a massage about 1:00 today and I've been feeling sad ever since, even though I felt pretty happy before. I wonder what causes this?

One theory about fibromyalgia is that people store unresolved emotions in the tissues of their body. My massage experience makes me wonder if this could be part of the picture. Massage detoxifies the body and releases toxins, it makes sense (to me) that it could also release emotional toxins.

I'm not sure what to do about this except drink extra fluids and take sea salt baths to help flush out the toxins. Massage does help me. If I go longer than a month without a massage I have more trouble with my arms and shoulders aching and my hands falling asleep at night. And just letting everything build up wouldn't be good either. When it comes to toxins, emotional or otherwise, I think of what Shrek says about gas, "better out than in, I say!"

Yes, I figure it's best to get all the pesky, troublesome toxins and emotions out, even it's temporarily uncomfortable. But that's probably because I do get a massage every month. If I hadn't had a massage for a long period of time, I would feel very apprehensive about how it might affect me. My very first massage caused the worst flare of my entire life. It was that flare that made me sick enough to get diagnosed with fibromyalgia. It was seven years ago but I still remember how miserable I was and how hard it was just to stay awake to watch my kids. At the time, if I would have made the connection to massage, I wouldn't have had the courage to get another one. Lucky for me, my second massage a couple of years later didn't bother me as much and they've just kept getting easier since them. Well, except for this weird emotional garbage I'm dealing with now.

What are your thoughts? Are you able to get massages? What happens when you do?

*While writing this, I realized I'm also getting a migraine. I don't know if it's related to the massage but I'm pretty sure it's affecting my ability to type and use language. Please forgive any errors or lack of coherence!


stipeygirl75 said...

Massage does cause me to flare and get a migraine at times. If my muscles are really locked up, it seems to release a lot of toxins as you say. But I would really be lost without my massages! It keeps my muscles loose and less painful!

Teresa said...

I love getting massages, but not afterwards! It causes me great pain the first day after my massage and I too tend to get emotional. It's important to get a therapist who knows how to work on someone with fibromyalgia. We can't handle the "deep tissue" massages. It causes more pain than help. And yes you MUST drink a ton of water before, during and especially after your massage to flush out the toxins that have just been released into your body that have been trapped in your tissues. Thankfully I have a therapist who also has fibromyalgia so she knows how to work on me.
Unfortunately, I haven't had a massage in about a year. I'm long overdue for one, but finances have hindered me.
I'm sorry you have such a hard time and especially that you're getting a migraine. Praying this doesn't last long.
Whenever you're feeling all emotional, call me. Your can cry on my shoulder, WELL in theory anyway!!

Trisha Pearson said...

Thank you Ladies! As always, it helps to know I'm not the only one experiencing something. I guess it helps me realize that what I'm experiencing is real and not just in my head.

I'm sorry you aren't able to afford massages, Teresa. I totally understand. My insurance stopped paying for them over a year ago and I wouldn't be able to afford it normally either. But I'm very blessed to have a friend who is a massage therapist. She gives me a big discount and does a very good job. I'm very grateful. And thank you for the offer of the shoulder to cry on! I appreciate it. The emotional stuff that goes along with fibro is just weird and seems to come out of nowhere sometimes.