There’s no doubt that living with fibromyalgia can be a challenge at any age. However, elderly adults with the disease face extra obstacles, especially when they are dependent on a family caregiver and home care provider to help with their daily needs. With a good treatment plan, however, the elderly adult can work to reduce their fibromyalgia symptoms and therefore increase their quality of life.
Because May is Fibromyalgia Awareness Month, it’s an excellent time for family caregivers and their aging relatives to revisit how they are managing the fibromyalgia and make adjustments as needed.
Symptoms of Fibromyalgia in Elderly Adults
The most common symptom of fibromyalgia is the widespread pain that seniors feel throughout their body. Muscle, joints and skin are tender, sore and quite painful. Fibromyalgia can be hard for seniors to deal with when they are struggling with other chronic illnesses such as arthritis, poor circulation and the aches and pains of aging.
Other symptoms that are common in seniors with fibromyalgia include irritable bowel syndrome, fatigue, migraines and insomnia. Again, because these symptoms can be part of another health issue, family caregivers and elderly adults need to focus in on the cause so the right treatment can be followed.
Family Caregivers Can Work to Reduce Fibromyalgia Symptoms
Because there is no cure for fibromyalgia, all seniors and family caregivers can do is to follow the doctor’s treatment program to manage the symptoms. In fact, family caregivers and elderly adults should not start any kind of treatment without approval from the doctor.
Fibromyalgia symptoms can be so severe that they limit the elderly person from completing even the most basic tasks. Elderly adults may need a home care provider to help with bathing, dressing, grooming and toileting. The must often rest and in severe cases, reduce or eliminate as much stress as possible.
When seniors have the resources to hire a home care assistant, they can turn many duties over to them so they can take care of themselves. Housekeeping, cooking, laundry and more are all tasks that can cause fibromyalgia to worsen. With a home care provider doing the bulk of the work, the less stress the elderly people will have.
The best treatment plans for those elderly adults with fibromyalgia include moderate exercise, restful sleep, a healthy diet, and certain medications as prescribed by their doctor. These lifestyle changes may be difficult for an aging adult to implement on their own, but with the help of a family caregiver and a home care provider, it can be done.
Family caregivers should not let the abundant opportunities to learn about the disease during Fibromyalgia Awareness Month slip by. The more they learn about fibromyalgia, the better care they can provide to their elderly relatives that live with it every day.
IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED ONE ARE CONSIDERING HOMECARE IN PINEVILLE, NC, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT GOLDEN HEART SENIOR CARE OF CHARLOTTE. (704) 246-5806.