Physical and Emotional Intimacy

Physical and Emotional Intimacy

What used to be something that came naturally, more or less, now requires greater intentionallity. Chronic pain and fatigue can be a real downer in our continued pursuit of a healthy sexual relationship. Even though we want to be engaged emotionally, fatigue and brain fog can make it seem like we’re climbing Mount Everest.

Pain, fatigue, and some medications and/or their side effects can diminish sexual desire and perhaps satisfaction. Also, if our partner is acting as our caregiver, it can be challenging to relate as a couple. Setting aside some time to listen to some music, perhaps light candles, and generally set a mood for intimacy to occur can be helpful. As much as we’d like our sex life to be spontaneous, it’s not necessarily to be anymore.

I think we could all use some variety and playfulness in our relationships. It takes the stress off “performance.” Maybe using different scented massage oils or lotions (just not something strong if your partner is sensitive to smells), the above mentioned candles, and plenty of time to set the mood is what we might need. The end goal is what you mutually decide on. No pressure to perform in a certain manner also helps build emotional intimacy, and helps to deepen your bond.

Open and honest communication with your partner is key. Share your fears and concerns with one another. Share your expectations and limitations. If you are unable to complete the sexual activity, there needs to be a level of understanding and acceptance. This is just one more area of our new normal that needs some adjusting to.

Our weight gain or loss, loss of hair, decreased libido, inability to maintain certain physical positions all combine to create a seemingly hopeless situation. Recognize that you’re doing the best you can and give yourself a break!

Some of the many benefits of sex, according to Dr. Pellegrino, is how it “increases our body’s endorphins; it improves blood flow, removes toxins from cells, and boosts our immune system; it results in stretching and then relaxation of our muscles; it reduces stress; and it re-connects us emotionally and intimately.”

No need to rush things, but if this is something that’s been missing from your relationship, begin to slowly restore this vital part of your relationship.

Fibromyalgia and Essential Oils

Fibromyalgia and Essential Oils

Are you familiar with essential oils? Perhaps you’ve used them before for other issues. I want to explore how essential oils may be beneficial to those of us with fibromyalgia. FYI, they are not a cure, but they can help to alleviate some symptoms, even temporarily.

Since we each experience FMS in our own unique ways, I would like to suggest some oils and what their potential benefits are. If you have some experience with oils you’d like to share, please do in the comments. You may be helping someone benefit from your experience.

Essential oils can be used in your bath and body oils, as well as in a diffuser (releasing in the air) or inhaling them. If you want to use them to massage the skin, I recommend using a carrier oil to blend with the essential oil. The best, in my opinion, is fractionated coconut oil. It’s clear and odorless, it won’t oxidize, and it penetrates the skin beautifully.

If this is something you are interested in, I would recommend getting a good book on essential oils. The essential oils that are most useful in treating the symptoms of FMS are:

For pain relief – spike lavender, sweet marjoram, lavender, petitgrain, Roman and German chamomile, clary sage, lemongrass, helichrysum, peppermint, ginger and black pepper. Spike lavender with peppermint and helichrysum creates an anti-inflammatory synergy.

For stress/anxiety relief – rose otto, frankincense, clary sage, sweet orange, bergamot, grapefruit, ylang ylang, sandalwood, neroli, sweet marjoram, petitgrain, mandarin, lavender, rose geranium, tangerine, jasmine.

Fatigue is what often keeps us confined to our beds. Often as a result of poor quality sleep, so even when we get enough sleep, it’s likely that we never enter into the fourth stage of REM, which is the restorative sleep. There are a number of essential oils that help provide energy to get the body and mind going, such as Peppermint, Eucalyptus, Rosemary, Basil, and Geranium.

For a more peaceful sleep – lavender, neroli, jasmine, marjoram, Roman chamomile. Put some in a diffuser in your bedroom or put a few drops under your pillow.

For a feeling of harmony and safety – frankincense, lavender, rose, mandarin, neroli, helichrysum.

For headaches – lavender, peppermint, marjoram, Roman chamomile. Inhaling or placing a few drops on your temple or neck can be helpful.

For increased circulation – rosemary, ginger, black pepper, peppermint, lemongrass, rose geranium.

I love using my diffuser as well as inhaling them. You can keep them in your purse or desk to inhale when you need them. I also like using lavender oil on my pulse points, it’s a natural perfume and very relaxing.

IMPORTANT: Lemon oil should ALWAYS be used in diluted forms; otherwise, it can cause skin irritation, so use a carrier oil. Avoid the use of lemon when you are out in the sun, as it may cause redness and burning of the skin.

A long soak in a hot bath with Epsom salt is an excellent way to help the body detoxify, reduce stress, and minimize pain. Adding essential oils to your bath helps even more.

Just use 2 drops Lavender Essential Oil, 2 drops Peppermint Essential Oil, and 1 cup Espom Salt.

I would strongly discourage you from buying on Amazon or other site. Instead get good quality oils. The 2 best companies, in my opinion, are DoTerra and Young Living. Just google reps that live near you.