I ask this question in our fibromyalgia support group, Many people are responding to this issue. Here we have collective knowledge on this question.
I started with 200 mg once a day. I increased it every other day until I got relief which for me was until I reached the maximum dose of 1600 mg every 24° period (i take 400 mg every 6°). Do not take if you are on an antidepressant without consulting your doctor. Also, avoid if you use sr. John’s wort.
It does much the same thing as SAM-e so don’t take it & SAM-e together without a doctor’s ok. Either or should apply to these 2 supplements. MSM comes in a variety of strengths. The maxi has seen recommended is 1000 mg every 8 hours. No more. I started at the lowest dose once a day, & increased gradually every 48° until I got relief. Again, avoid if you’re using st. John’s wort.
The warnings on these supplements above are because, to a lesser extent, they stimulate serotonin production. It’s very mild, but things like this add up. Often, a pharmacist will know more about them than a doctor, esp. if your doctor doesn’t hold with supplements.
Another Rx pain med that slightly increases the availability of serotonin in the body is Tramadol (Ultram). If you are ever given an Rx for this, make sure the doctor is aware if you are using any or all of those 3 medicines (SAM-e, MSM, & St. John’s Wort). The issue between MSM & SAM-e is also that they work by increasing the availability of sulfur in the body, but too high levels of sulfur are as bad. It may be worse than too low levels.
I have also found Boswellia Serrata to be of some help. 600 mg twice a day is the recommended max dose. It mostly helps with joint pain, which is common in fibro patients (I should know, I’ve had it since 1984).
When we were living in Scotland, a woman who owned a natural food store recommended nettle tea for joint pain. I found it quite helpful. I was very surprised to discover few people in the US thought it was used for joint pain; many here in the US use it only for respiratory illnesses, including COPD, & had no idea it was used for joint pain. I have used it when I had a respiratory illness, & found it helpful for both.
Also, these days, you can purchase 4% lidocaine topical lotion to rub into sore joints. Make sure you don’t strip the skin of its natural oils as that’s the medium through which it absorbs into the skin.
Another thing recommended is DMSO. You’ll usually find it in the veterinary section if you want the cheapest prices, & in states that don’t allow its sale for human use, you won’t see anything but veterinary formulations in any online store. It’s a very common chemical byproduct & nontoxic.
Don’t get a 99% solution, get something diluted & in gel form…. I’ve tried both & diluted 8n gel is more effective. The main issue is it can, for those with sensitive noses, smell like raw garlic…& it can leave a taste of garlic in your mouth – even though there is no common chemical I am aware of that DMSO shares with garlic. I find garlic difficult to deal with in food.
I am very sensitive & large amounts are a huge turn-off to me. If I want to stop myself from eating too much, that’s a heck of an appetite suppressant for me. It’s also not cool with cereal at breakfast…the taste of, say, honey nut Cheerios & garlic just so does not work…but I found it helped with sore joints regardless of the taste.
I have recently found a formulation where DMSO is listed as an inert ingredient, the main ingredients being menthol & camphor…so you smell like linament on a horse or Ben-Gay on an older person. The DMSO can’t be anything but a base ingredient in some areas…areas though have yet to see any mention of its harming anyone. Anyway, it helps but doesn’t take away all the pain. Nothing does.
As for antidepressants, pain & depression share many of the same pathways in the body, so antidepressants are used, with varying degrees of success, to help with the pain.
You must realize that this war on opioids & the false blame opioids receive for the overdose crisis means that we may all, if we’re on pain medication, be forced off it…& those newly diagnosed with pain syndromes like fibromyalgia may never see an Rx for pain medication.
I’ve seen tweets by people who have had major surgeries & their post-OP pain. Options are things like one, maybe 2, acetaminophen, extra strength (500 mg a pill), every 8 hours with 400 mg of ibuprofen every 6 hours for pain unrelieved by acetaminophen.
Most hospitals are so afraid of the DEA raiding them that they won’t prescribe opioids at all for any reason whatsoever. The VA has pulled all veterans off opioids altogether, resulting in a rash of suicides due to being unable to live with severe pain from war injuries.
I include in this WWII vets who had things like shrapnel buried in areas that precluded the removal of the shrapnel because of the risk of paralysis or even death. This is a jagged foreign object in the body, always tearing at something inside, often close to the spine or a major organ.
Many have been on opioids for decades with no, only a few, increases in dosage over that extensive time frame. What a way to reduce the number of VA patients! What a way to say thanks to the men who were sent from farms & small towns all over the US to make sure the menace of the Axis countries never reached our shores!
Many of these were called back up to active duty in Korea in the early 1950s, to yet another war. What a way to perpetuate the wrongs done to our Vietnam veterans, sent by conscription to fight an unpopular war & blamed for joining an army they didn’t ask to join but were forced to join.
If you want me to write more about this I can continue…
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