14 Products That Can Make Mornings With Fibromyalgia Easier
Mornings are notoriously difficult for people with fibromyalgia; we wake up feeling exhausted and sore, wondering how on earth we will keep our eyes open as the day goes on. Lying in bed is uncomfortable, getting up is uncomfortable, and yet there is so much to do that the thoughts in our mind are uncomfortable. The 6 a.m. wake-up call is full of dread and often I find that searching for my usual positivity amid the fibro fog requires energy I just don’t have.
These are the words of Mighty contributor Sarah Borien, from her essay The Hardest Hour of the Day With Fibromyalgia. Like Sarah, many folks with fibro struggle to get their day started due to increased pain, fatigue and brain fog or even a lack of sleep the night before. If this sounds all too familiar, know you’re not alone.
While mornings can be tough, some people have found certain tricks or tips that help those first few hours of the day feel a bit more manageable. Below, you’ll find the products our Mighty community recommended for coping with fibromyalgia in the morning. Hopefully the following list can provide some ideas for easing the challenges morning can bring.
Here are our community’s recommendations.
1. Warm Bath With Epsom Salt
Either soaking in a warm bath or taking a warm shower can help loosen up muscles and relieve pain and stiffness. If you’re taking a bath, try adding Epsom salt for additional relief from aches and pains.
Catherine Taylor recommended, “Hot water to ease the muscle pain and stiffness. A bath with Epsom salt works the best, but standing in the shower has to suffice for days when I’m short on time. Happy medium is sitting on the shower chair in the shower.”
“Hot bath to loosen up,” added Crystal Medley.
Buy the Epsom salt above for $13.95 from Amazon.
2. Weighted Blanket
Weighted blankets are designed to help you relax and get deeper sleep. For those with fibro who struggle with insomnia or sleep disturbances, this may be especially helpful in improving the quality of your sleep so you can wake in the morning feeling more rested.
Merri Evelyn Skinner told us, “My morning now starts at bedtime… my husband got me a weighted blanket for Christmas, and it is incredible! I sleep so much better, lots of true REM sleep… It’s a lot easier to wake up when you’ve slept!”
Buy the 10-lb. weighted blanket above for $195 from Weighting Comforts.
3. Oofos Sandals
If you’re looking for comfortable and supportive footwear to slip on in the mornings, these sandals may help. The foam is designed to absorb more impact than traditional footwear, and the arches are cradled for better support that can help reduce stress on your feet, knees and back.
“Oofos flip flops are the best thing for my poor feet,” wrote Shonna Kracinski. “I put the flip flops on before my feet hit the floor and they help to minimize the pain. They are a dream!”
Buy the sandals above for $64.95 from Oofos.
4. Sticky Notes
Sticky notes are the best friend of someone who struggles with fibro fog. Whether you need to easily jot down the important thoughts that cross your mind in the middle of the night, or consult your notes before starting your day, these can be super helpful to keep on your nightstand.
“Sticky notes!” said Bay Howe. “Brain fog is the worst in the morning and it’s the only thing to help me remember what’s going on.”
Buy the sticky notes above for £3.60 from Amazon UK.
5. Gym Equipment
For some of those with fibromyalgia, gentle moving and stretching can help loosen up tight, sore muscles in the morning. Of course, be sure to talk to your doctor about which movements and exercises are best for you before beginning any new regimens.
“Not a product, but for me, it’s the gym. I’ve had fibro for 15 years and over the course of those 15 years I’ve progressed from light walks, to gentle yoga, now into light weight training,” explained Vanessa Smith. “I’ve definitely had my downs with it, flare-ups while I figured out where I was OK to start. But I think it’s one of the things that has kept me with the mobility I have. It helps me get moving in the morning and prepares me for work. The shower and sauna after probably help too. But the gym itself has helped me out immensely in the mornings.”
Buy the yoga mat above for $14.99 from Amazon.
6. Blackout Curtains
Blackout curtains help keep your room pitch black, whether it’s midnight or noon. This can help you sleep better at night (making it easier to get up in the morning), but it can also prevent those bright morning rays from hitting you too early.
Mackenzie Porter wrote, “Blackout curtains. They keep the light from triggering a migraine, help me assess if I have a migraine, and allow me to take naps throughout the day when needed.”
“Blackout curtains,” recommended Krystina Kari Ferrari. “And setting multiple alarms and not hitting snooze. I have alarms for 6:16, 6:20, and 6:31. I get out of bed at the 6:31 alarm and then have another alarm to let me know I need to be done in the bathroom, and my last alarm lets me know I need to be heading out the door if I haven’t already.”
Buy the blackout curtains above for $21.95 from Amazon.
7. Electric Blanket
Is there anything better than curling up under a warm blanket? An electric blanket is not only soothing, but the heat can also help relieve aches and pains, allowing you to wake feeling more rested and in less pain.
“Electric blanket,” Lizzie Grace told us. “I turn it on about 30 minutes before I have to get up and it gets rid of my morning stiffness and helps massively with pain.”
Buy the electric blanket above for CDN$53 from Amazon Canada.
Caffeine may be a no-go for some of those with fibro or other health conditions, but if you’re a devout coffee drinker, having that morning cup can help you start the day on the right note. If morning pain and stiffness makes it difficult to get a pot brewing, a programmable coffee maker like the one featured above can be prepped the night before and put on a timer – so your coffee is ready without you having to move a muscle in the morning.
Lynn Amy said, “I know coffee is a no-no, but iced coffee helps me. It’s the routine, it’s the caffeine, and it’s the hope the day will be better than the last.”
“Honestly, one cup of coffee in the morning really helps me. It makes my stiffness and pain seem less when I first wake up! If I don’t have the coffee my stiffness lasts a lot longer,” explained Jenny Williams Sarver.
“My programmable coffee maker,” added Adrianne Frontz. “I find it hard to stay in bed once the smell hits me.”
Buy the programmable coffee maker above for $29.75 from Amazon.
9. Infrared Sauna
If you depend on heat to get you moving in the morning, this portable infrared sauna might come in handy. It allows you to reap the benefits of a sauna from anywhere, including the comfort of your own room.
“My infrared sauna,” recommended Jayne Dough. “It heats me up right down to the bones. I was amazed the first time I used one, it was the closest I had come to pain-free in so long.”
Buy the portable infrared sauna above for $189.99 from Amazon.
10. Grabber Tool
Getting out of bed in the morning when you’re struggling with pain and fatigue is tough. But if you need to access water, snacks or your morning meds, a grabber tool can help you do so without wasting precious energy climbing in and out of bed.
“My grab stick and my profiling bed. Between the two I can sit up in bed and pull open the curtains with ease, meaning I can take my morning medication and rest before having to get out of bed to start the day,” wrote Emma Plunkett. “The grab stick’s also really useful for rescuing all the things I drop on the floor due to my poor coordination!”
Buy the grabber tool above for $16.97 from Amazon.
11. Car Seat Heater
For those who face a long commute to work or an early morning doctor appointment, this portable seat heater can help loosen up your muscles and relieve pain while you’re en route.
“Coffee in the morning to get me going and my heated seats on the way anywhere,” wrote Brandi Brumley.
Buy the car seat heater above for $29.99 from Amazon.
12. Folding Chair
It can be exhausting to stand in front of the bathroom counter in the morning while you’re brushing your teeth, fixing your hair, washing your face and putting on makeup. Having a folding chair in the bathroom or close nearby can help you avoid getting too fatigued before you’ve even started your day.
“A folding chair,” wrote Erika McCoy. “By keeping a folding chair in the bathroom, I am able to sit while I do my hair and makeup allowing time for my meds to kick in and for my body to start to un-stiffen.”
Buy the folding chair above for $14.44 from Amazon.
13. Memory Foam Slippers
It’s never fun to get out of bed in the morning and step onto a hard, cold floor. Keeping a pair of memory foam slippers right next to your bed not only keeps your feet warm and toasty, but can provide comfortable cushioning and support if you are achey and stiff.
“Super comfy memory foam slippers,” Brittany Greve recommended.
Buy the memory foam slippers above for $19.49 from Amazon Australia.
14. Shiatsu Massage Pillow
If you often find yourself waking up to a stiff neck and achey back and shoulders, keeping a massage tool nearby can help you loosen up before you get out of bed. The shiatsu massager featured above also has a strap across the back, allowing it to be attached to a chair or car seat if you need to use it on the go.
“Shiatsu massage pillow breaks up sticky fascia and trigger point knots,” explained Mel Lynn.
Buy the shiatsu neck massager above for $49.95 from Amazon.
MORE ABOUT FIBROMYALGIA:
Fibromyalgia, a chronic illness with three main symptoms — widespread pain, chronic fatigue and cognitive trouble. Fibromyalgia is a complicated illness that’s not well understood. In the past, it was mischaracterized as a mental health disorder. Even today, some doctors wave off fibro symptoms as being “all in your head.” This isn’t the case. Read The Mighty’s comprehensive guide to fibromyalgia here. Click here to join our fibro community and connect with people who get it.