12 Winter Essentials for People With Fibromyalgia
Trying to manage the symptoms of fibromyalgia isn’t easy any time of the year – but the winter can bring some unique challenges. Some of those with fibro may experience cold intolerance, circulation issues, increased pain and stiffness or even just an exacerbation of their fibro symptoms during the chilly winter months. So how do you cope with the season when the lower temperatures can trigger symptoms?
To help those with fibro who dread the cold, rainy winter months, we asked our Mighty fibromyalgia community which products they consider essential to keep on hand during the winter. These products help them stay warm, relieve pain and do their best to prevent flare-ups.
Here are their recommendations.
1. Heating Pad
A go-to product in the chronic pain community, heating pads provide heat therapy to help soothe your aches and pains and keep you toasty on cold winter nights.
“Heat pads, especially if certain joints are more affected in colder weather!” Chloe Herriot told us.
Buy the heating pad above for $44.99 from Amazon.
2. Flannel Shirts
A flannel shirt can serve as a warm, protective layer against the cold. Though everyone with fibromyalgia may have different skin sensitivities and tolerate different fabrics, some comfortable flannel shirts could be a great winter staple.
“Flannel shirts! So soft and cozy. The perfect layer,” wrote R Shay Harris.
“[Flannel shirts are] one of my faves! They are a nice weight to go grocery shopping in too I have found. The cold cases and freezer section are sometimes too cold to walk down. Flannel is perfect to wear because of that layering,” added Fero Thor.
Buy the flannel shirt above for $18 from Amazon.
3. Neck and Shoulder Heat Wrap
If you struggle with pain or tension in your neck and shoulders, the wrap above is perfectly designed to drape over you and deliver heat therapy to these areas.
“I just got this [neck and back wrap] last week, after I have killed about six to eight other heating pads. This one has magnets in the front where it closes on your neck, and it is so long that it covers to my tail bone! It not only helps with the pain but also helps me to stay warm at night by relaxing those parts of my body that hurt just oh so bad!” Amanda Greene said.
Buy the heat wrap above for $35.99 from Amazon.
4. Thick Socks
Thick, cozy socks that will keep your feet warm are important for anyone during the winter, but may be especially helpful for those with fibromyalgia or anyone who struggles with poor circulation.
Krystina Kari Ferrari recommended, “Heated mattress pad, heated blankets, and warm/thick socks! If my feet get cold then all of me is cold and hurting too. I love the fleece sock from L.L.Bean [featured above], but any thick and soft sock will work.”
Buy the fleece socks above for $19.95 from L.L.Bean.
5. Electric Blanket
If you like heating pads but find they just aren’t big enough to reach all of the spots on your body that hurt, an electric blanket is a great option for staying warm and cozy during the winter while also relieving pain.
“My electric blanket,” said Rachel L. Smith. “I turn it on before I get into bed and everything is nice and toasty.”
“Heating blanket! Cold makes my pain sooo much worse,” added Ashley Torres.
Ashton Morgan added, “My heated blanket is sometimes the only thing that gives me relief.”
Buy the heated throw blanket above for $56.98 from Amazon.
6. Wheat Pack
A wheat bag can be microwaved to provide soothing heat therapy to sore and painful parts of your body.
“Heatable wheat packs! They really help with the aches and pains,” Amy Clements told us.
Diane Blackett recommended, “Hot water bottle and wheat heat packs! I can move them around to various places that are hurting.”
Buy the handmade wheat/flax bag above for $10.55 from Etsy.
7. CBD Bath Bombs
If hot baths help you relax and ease your pain, a CBD bath bomb could be a great way to reap the benefits of CBD at the same time. The bath bombs featured above contain hemp oil and are also made with lavender and tea tree essential oils.
Deanna Scalf recommended, “Laying on top of an electric blanket! Full body heating pad action! Plus CBD bath bombs help with the extra achiness.”
Buy the lavender bath bomb above for $10 from Canna Spa.
Some of those with fibromyalgia may struggle with poor circulation (perhaps due to Raynaud’s or another condition), and therefore find their fingers frequently feeling cold or numb. A warm pair of gloves can be essential for keeping your hands and fingers warm during the winter.
Courtney Flannery wrote, “A really warm pair of gloves and arm warmers!”
Buy the gloves above for $9.99 from Amazon.
9. Ponytail Beanie
If you like putting your hair up but also enjoy wearing hats or beanies to prevent heat from escaping from your head, this ponytail beanie is for you. It’s the perfect way to stay toasty while also keeping your hair out of your face.
“One of those ponytail beanies!” said Terri Di Mauro. “My hair is almost always up and this way I can still wear a hat comfortably.”
Buy the ponytail beanie above for $17.99 from Amazon.
10. Portable Space Heater
Being cold can exacerbate pain for many, so a small, portable space heater may be the perfect addition to your living room, bedroom or office if you frequently find yourself feeling chilly.
“Mini portable space heater!” wrote Heather Stanley. “I carry that thing around my house like it is permanently attached to me in winter.”
Buy the space heater above for $29.99 from Amazon.
11. Thermal Underwear
Thermal undershirts and leggings are an easy and discreet way to prevent body heat from escaping. They can often be worn under regular clothes (or pajamas!) to keep you warm and reduce pain.
“I’d personally say thermals if my allodynia isn’t too severe. The cold weather seriously affects my muscles and pain levels, thermals help keep my pain a slightly more manageable level, at least in my legs and arms,” Leon McCluskey explained.
“Thermal leggings to keep those leg muscles loose!” recommended Mighty member Fm_Paul.
12. Heated Mattress Pad
A heated mattress pad keeps your entire bed warm and comfortable, no matter the season, and the heat can help you relax and relieve pain so you can get some sleep at night.
“Epsom salts and a heated mattress pad! I turn on the heating pad, and then take a hot bath with Epsom salts. By the time I’m out, the bed is nice and warm to crawl into!” explained Rai Smith.
Buy the heated mattress pad above (queen size) for $69.99 from Amazon.