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Are Colds And Flus Worse With Fibromyalgia?~4 Simple Steps To Ease The Pain

Do you ever wonder if your cold/flu is made worse by your Fibromyalgia?

Many people find colds and flus worse with Fibromyalgia. Due to the fact that we deal with an exaggerated pain response, any normal aches & pains seems to be amplified.

As I opened Facebook this morning, I found my ‘memories’ post from a year ago at the top of my home feed. Guess what? I was sick at exactly this time last year (even the same day!). So, since I seem to have a similar bug this year, I thought I would run the post again. This time though, I will throw in 4 tips to  help ease the way if like me, you are feeling a little under the weather.

Are Colds And Flus Worse With Fibromyalgia?~4 Simple Steps To Ease The Pain


Pain = FMS, but when my immune system crashes, it becomes a ‘tender point’ free for all. Click To Tweet

 If an axiom of Spring is,  ‘April showers bring May flowers’, what can we say of winter?  ‘January’s chill doth good health kill’, or ‘Winter Solstice’s freeze, ushers the season of endless sneeze’?  However you say it, there’s a lot of us hacking up lungs, and  feeling generally crappy right about now.  Crank up the floor heaters, and break out the Vicks!

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I caught the crud Saturday night.  My chest tightened up, my mood levels hit the floor, and my pain level hit the roof.  Pain to one degree or another is a part of everyday life with FMS, but when my immune system crashes, it becomes a ‘tender point’ free for all.  I usually keep it together pretty well, but by Sunday night I was making loud exclamations every time I moved.  Several areas of my back felt like I’d been in a punch fight (I lost), and my hips were re-enacting Mel’s final scene in ‘Braveheart’, only they capitulated, “Mercy!” instead.  Here’s a picture titled, ‘If Fibromyalgia Were Visible This Is What It Would Look Like’:


It’s the ‘Double Whammy’!  You’re already dealing with all the symptoms of a FMS or CFS flare-up, and sure enough, you can feel the ol’ familiar signs of an oncoming virus/cold/flu ect.  Post nasal drip aggravates the back of your throat, additional aches and pains attack your already weakened joints, and your eyes start to look as if you’ve been watching ‘P.S. I Love You’ for the first time.  Yep.  You’ve caught the same thing that’s being passed around to everyone else.  But, unlike everyone else, your immune system is already damaged.  In fact, if you had to sum up FMS/CFS it would be, ‘compromised immune system’.

Now, we both know there is no ‘magic bullet’ cure that will completely alleviate the cold/flu/virus that’s plaguing you, and causing worse than average FMS/CFS symptoms.  What we DO KNOW, is that boosting your immune system’s effectiveness will allow your body to recover faster, and hopefully stave off any secondary infections or illnesses that seek to piggyback onto the sickness you already have.

Make sure to take Vitamin D3 supplements if sunshine is unavailable where you live... Click To Tweet

Are Colds And Flus Worse With Fibromyalgia?~4 Simple Steps To Ease The Pain

(spoiler alert:  NOT ONE of these will suggest you ‘eat more vegetables’, or ‘take up Yoga’!)

          1. GO OUTSIDE:  If you are not living in an area where it’s 40 below with gale force winds blowing;  take a blanket, a tasty beverage, and go sit in the sunshine for 15-20 min.  Our fiery star is the best source that exists to supply the body’s Vitamin D requirements.  No tanning or burning,  just a relaxing ‘warm up’.  Make sure to take Vitamin D3 supplements if sunshine is unavailable where you live (and maybe think about moving).

          2. WASH YOUR FILTHY MITTS!:  Since the ‘masses’ are running amok with the ‘creeping crud’, it’s vital to make an extra effort to wash your hands as often as possible.  Especially if you have to go ‘out there’ where throngs of people are hand wiping their noses, and projectile sneezing onto every surface in sight!

          3. LISTEN TO THE MELLOW SOUNDSWhat type of music does it for you?  Find whatever tunes give you that ‘feel good in your bones’ sensation, put on your headphones, and groove your endorphins into stimulation~

          4. LAUGH YOUR BUTT OFF:  Here’s what a good belly laugh does for your body: *decreases stress hormones ~ *increases immune cells and infection fighting antibodies ~ *increases feel good chemicals in the brain.  So, grab a book that makes you laugh (anything by Jenny Lawson does it for me),  que your favorite Netflix comedy, or spend some time with the person you can have a good  giggle with.


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  • Reply
    Christianne McCall
    January 5 at 1:45 pm

    My cold started after Thanksgiving and has progressed into pnuemonia. Is it true that our immune systems are weaker?

    • Reply
      January 6 at 10:34 am

      Well Christianne, that’s a debated subject in the medical community. I think because they are not agreed upon as to what actually causes FMS (could be several factors), it really is based on what underlying issues there are. Good question though, hopefully more info will come out soon!

  • Reply
    January 5 at 1:55 pm

    I hear you! I fought it off valiantly with lots of herbs, garlic etc. while hubs had it in November, then my dad ( who we care for with hospice help) got it and gave it to me Dec. 20. Nothing worse than adding this to the holidays! Unfortunately, nothing I threw at it would prevent my inevitable sinus infection I get every time! Still in recovery mode with antibiotics which I just hate to take.

    • Reply
      January 6 at 10:31 am

      UGH! So sorry Marilynne! It does suck doesn’t it? Hope your are better VERY soon! ♥

  • Reply
    January 6 at 8:38 am

    Thanks so much, Kristine, for these helpful tips. It is bound to make life more bearable this time of year. We are having some dramatic weather changes here where I live right now and it seems everywhere I go there are people coughing or sneezing without being considerate of others.
    Dianna recently posted…A Lesson LearnedMy Profile

    • Reply
      January 6 at 10:30 am

      Know exactly what you mean Dianna! Stay healthy! 🙂

  • Reply
    Ellen @ My Uncommon Everyday
    January 6 at 11:35 am

    I (fortunately) don’t get sick often, but when I do, I warn everyone around me that I’m a little bit of a baby when sick, even if it is just a cold. On your average day, I can usually manage to function with pain, but as soon as you add the illness, it’s like I hit my tipping point and just crash. Totally appreciate these tips!

    • Reply
      January 7 at 1:11 pm

      Me too Ellen! Ugh, it’s been a week, and I’m still feeling it! At least it is better than last week 😉

  • Reply
    January 16 at 8:14 am

    This year I got the “crud” on top of my AI disease, then I got a tooth infection. Seriously? All at once. Shoot me now! I’m going to stock up on pineapple juice, had no idea that this could help. And that smoothie looks delish. Love coming here and getting great tips on how to take care of myself better. You’re the best.
    Nikki recently posted…Social Media Blast-Instagram Week-Let’s Get Focused!My Profile

    • Reply
      January 16 at 9:21 am

      Well, first, thank you Nikki! And second, HOLY COW!! That sounds ABSOLUTELY miserable! 🙁 You poor thing! Wow, sometimes when that immune system crashes, everything comes tumbling down with it, huh? I truly hope you are feeling better my friend! Take good care ♥♥♥

  • Reply
    August 8 at 8:05 am

    Good timing on reading this. I just somewhat got over the flu. I haven’t had that kind of flu for over 10 years (the both ends kind) After a few hours I was unable to get myself out of bed. I was thinking that it may be that the fm/cf/ibs was made worse by the flu. It has been over a week and I am still weak and ibs has taken a few steps back. Yes, flu does make the rest of it all worse. I am doing little things and staying in the house where it is cool. Thank you for doing what you do. I have found help and comfort in many ways. Be Well, Valerie

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