Essential Oils for Fibromyalgia & How To Use Them
Fibromyalgia is a terrible condition more and more people are suffering from. It is hard to find good information because while it has been around a long time, the condition has only recently been named and studied so not as much is written about it in aromatherapy. (Which doesn't mean that essential oils for fibromyalgia can't be wonderful.) Also, what is probably worse, they still don’t know what causes fibromyalgia.
Some experts believe it is caused by hormonal disturbances and chemical imbalances that affect nerve signaling. Others believe that with its deep muscle pain, it is linked to stress, illness, or trauma. Still other experts think it’s hereditary. There have also been some studies linking fibromyalgia to sudden trauma to the brain and spinal cord.
Keep in mind, though, theories about what causes it are just that. Theories. Further study is needed.
- Pain — the most common one
- Concentration and memory problems — known as “fibro fog”
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Morning stiffness
- Painful menstrual cramps
- Sleep problems
- Numbness, and tingling in hands, arms, feet, and legs
- Tender points
- Urinary symptoms, such as pain or frequency
Muscle and tissue pain is the most common of symptoms and it has been described as tender, aching, throbbing, sore, burning, and gnawing. It is all over the body and felt in the muscles, tendons, and ligaments around the joints.
Fatigue and sleeplessness are also common. Many describe it as similar to the flu. WebMD has a full list of symptoms with more detailed explanations.
Essential Oils for Fibromyalgia
There are essential oils that can help. How much they help we don’t really know yet. But they can help relieve the symptoms.
Here is the list of oils I found:
Lemongrass, Sacred Frankincense, Ylang Ylang, Rosemary, Lemon, Orange, Peppermint, Patchouli, Clary Sage, Melissa, Roman Chamomile, Bergamot, Black Pepper, Ginger Root, Sandalwood, Palmarosa, Tea Tree, Lavender.
Points to think about
- Exercise is important. According to many sources, exercise can help relieve the pain because it increases the body’s production of endorphins, natural painkillers that also boost mood. Starting slowly and gradually increasing the duration and intensity of exercise can help you enjoy the benefits of exercise without feeling more pain.
- For more ideas on managing the pain, see this article on Pain Relief with Essential Oils: Sciatica, Muscles, and Joints. That can give you some good ideas.
- Rocky Mountain Oils has a few blends that can help. For pain, True Blue, Arthritis Plus, or Pain Ease. For the Insomnia you can try diffusing Dreamtime, Peace & Quiet, or Tranquility. The Defense supplement is very helpful. Right now, you should only take 1 capsule a day, with a full meal. Particularly if you are not used to taking herbal supplements. After a month, if you don’t have any stomach issues, you can increase to 2 capsules a day, at different times of the day.
- While they are not the same, arthritis pains are very similar and you can use many of the same essential oil treatments that are found in our article on Treating Arthritis with Essential Oils.
- A proper diet can help. Plenty of fresh vegetables, especially the dark leafy greens, fruits, and whole grains. What is particularly needed depends on the person so pay attention to what works for you and what doesn’t.
- Massage, acupuncture, and other forms of therapy could help. Craniosacral therapy might be helpful. It involves light touches on the bones of the skull, as well as the face and mouth, to release tension and improve body movement through movement of the cerebellum fluid.
- It’s fairly simple to make your own massage lotion for this. Just mix a few drops of essential oils or blend of choice into a small amount of unscented shea butter lotion and massage in.
- The main thing is to try to stay as positive as you can and avoid the negative people who tell you to “snap out of it!” Just know that you are in for the long haul and you can handle it and you’ll deal with it day by day.
*Please note: With any recipe’s involving bath or massage blends, always test on a small part of your skin first before using all over your body. Please be sure your skin can handle the blend before being covered in it.
JC’s Pain Reliever Balm
- 1 ounce Beeswax
- 3 ounces Virgin Coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon Vitamin E oil
- 1 teaspoon Avocado oil
- 10 drops Peppermint
- 10 drops Eucalyptus radiata
- 5 drops Clove Bud
- 3 drops Ginger Root
Gently heat the beeswax and coconut oil together in a double boiler until just melted. Remove from heat and mix in vitamin E oil and avocado oil. Then add essential oils and mix well. Pour into container and allow to cool completely before closing lid. Label and use on sore joints as needed.
Fibromyalgia Massage #1
- 5 drops Bergamot FCF
- 8 drops Palmarosa
- 3 drops Tea Tree
- 4 drops Ravintsara
- 1 ounce carrier oil
Gently massage into affected areas daily.
Fibromyalgia Massage #2
- 2 drops Lemongrass
- 1 drops German Chamomile
- 3 drops Lavender
- 2 drops Rosemary
- 1 tablespoon Carrier oil
Gently massage into affected areas daily.
Sleepy Time Balm
- 1/2 cup Lemon Balm leaves
- 1/3 cup Chamomile flowers
- 1/3 cup Lavender buds
- 3 cups Almond oil or FCO (Fractionated Coconut Oil)
- 2,000 IU Vitamin E oil
- 1/4 teaspoon Evening Primrose oil
- 3-4 tablespoons Beeswax
- 40 drops Lavender
- 5 drops Valerian Root
- 20 drops Bergamot FCF
- 20 drops Blend of Rose
Prepare infused oil: Put base oil in a double boiler. Crush or tear dried herbs into smaller pieces and add to oil. Stir thoroughly to blend. Bring mixture almost to simmer (125 – 135 degrees). Do not put lid on pot. Allow to heat over low heat for 4 hours. Check temperature and stir it every 30 minutes.
After 4 hours, remove from heat and allow to cool for 15 minutes. Carefully strain through a fine mesh strainer lined with a coffee filter. Squeeze all oil out of herbs then discard the herbs. Add vitamin E oil and stir very thoroughly. Add to a jar, label, cap when completely cool and store in a dark cabinet. Makes 2 1/2 cups. Use within 1 year.
Prepare balm: Combine 1 cup of infusion and the beeswax in a double boiler. Warm over low heat until beeswax is just melted. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes, stirring a few times. Add the essential oils and stir thoroughly. Pour into a container, label, and set aside for 30 minutes to thicken. Makes approximately 1 1/4 cups. Use within 1 year.
To apply: Gently massage a small amount into your chest, back, temples, around your ears, under your nose, and on your throat.
I also asked for suggestions on the Rocky Mountain Oils Facebook page about essential oils for fibromyalgia and here are two more:
"Wintergreen and Lemongrass work on areas that are flaring up but they only work localized not system wise. But the bugs stay away and if you like the scent of Wintergreen. I think it’s the wintergreen that is similar to the properties in Tiger Balm. The Lemongrass helps with inflammation, Wintergreen with pain receptors. I use them neat and it’s much easier on clothes than Tiger Balm would be because they absorb faster."
"Fibro typically has at its root adrenal fatigue and hormonal (hypothalamus-pituitary axis) dysregulation. There are often thyroid issues, as well. In classical Chinese medicine, fibro is typically a combination of yang deficiency (deficient body heat not getting to the muscles), blood deficiency (nourishment not getting to the muscles; similar to anemia), and dampness (usually due to a high-dairy, high-sugar, high-gluten, high-cold/raw diet) lodging in the muscles or digestive system and blocking yang from circulating. Anything that regulates the endocrine system, strengthens the thyroid and adrenals, promotes circulation, aids digestion, and relieves pain—especially warming substances like cinnamon—should help with fibro. That’s very general, but the principles should help you with choosing the right oils."
Fibromyalgia is a tough condition to have to deal with. It takes over your entire life, keeping you from living it as fully as you would like. But there’s hope. What do you like to do to relieve your fibromyalgia? Please share in the comment section at the bottom of the page. Give everyone else the benefit of your knowledge.