Alternatives to Medication for Pain Management in Fibromyalgia

This article originally appeared as an answer posted on Quora.

What are some helpful ways that help people with fibromyalgia get relief from pain even after taking prescribed medication?

There are many, and I agree with the others that sleep hygiene, meditation, yoga/exercise, diet, massage, hydrotherapy, distraction and emotional self-regulation can all be helpful.

Others to consider include acupuncture[1] (or acupressure), progressive muscle relaxation[2] with/without biofeedback therapy, prescribed supplements (CoQ10[3], magnesium[4] and vitamin D[5] are often helpful), and keeping a journal as a means of tracking symptoms and stressors – writing about what distresses you emotionally can ease physical symptoms.

Biofeedback therapy is the process of using instruments that measure physiological responses to gain better conscious control of these responses[6]. It is not effective for all fibromyalgia symptoms but can lessen pain[7], which was the specific symptom included in this question.


[1] Pain modulation in patients with fibromyalgia undergoing acupuncture treatment is associated with fluctuations in serum neuropeptide Y levels.

[2] Fibromyalgia: Exercise, relaxation and stress management

[3] CoQ10 May Help Improve Symptoms of Fibromyalgia

[4] The Role of Magnesium in Neurological Disorders

[5] Effect of vitamin D supplementation in chronic widespread pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

[6] Biofeedback – Wikipedia

[7] Efficacy of EMG- and EEG-Biofeedback in Fibromyalgia Syndrome: A Meta-Analysis and a Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials