Stiffness

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by jpswife_4boys, Mar 15, 2003.

  1. jpswife_4boys

    jpswife_4boys New Member

    I know we all deal with stiffness but here lately I have been dealing with what feels like a different kind. It's not like just waking and you can't really move. My muscles and tendons feel like they are shortening. If that makes any sense. It hurts really bad to move certain muscles. It actually feels like I don't have the capability to stretch. It's hard to explain. My muscles just feel like they are wasting away. This morning I couldn't use my left arm for a while. I couldn't move it to where my elbow had to straighten up. If I sit indian style my legs won't straighten up completely for a few minutes. This is so painful. I guess I'm just whinning but dang it hurts. It's kind of scarry too. I feel like I losing my muscle capabilities. I do stretching exercises so it's not like I'm not doing anything. Maybe it's just one of those things that will just last a few days. I hope!!!

    When I stretch my arms out above my head and try to stretch my back a little I can hear cracking sounds in my back. Any one close to me can hear it also. Do any of you have this? Over the past couple of years it's become worse. Sounds like 50 knucles being cracked at the same time. Just raising my shoulders will cause this also.

  2. Shaylee

    Shaylee New Member

    I am so sorry to hear about your stiffness. I have stiffness also in my legs and sometimes in my arms. It really hurts and I do what I call the "Nursing Home Shuffle"
    where you just shuffle your feet as the elderly do.

    The most important thing I have found for this is exercise and stretching those muscles everyday. I know it sounds crazy and yes it does hurt, but instead of walking I ride a bicycle and walk as much as I can. It really has helped with the stiffness a lot. Also when I lay in bed at night I do as many leg stretching excercises as I can before going to sleep and this has seemed to help with the morning stiffness.

    Hope this is of some help.

    Praying for YOU!!!

    Shaylee
  3. karen55

    karen55 New Member

    Unfortunately, that phrase is true. I do daily stretching, and I hate to think of how bad I would feel if I didn't.

    I am one who used to work out regularly, I was very active, and honestly, in great shape from exercising. Not so now. The best I've been able to accomplish in quite a while is to stretch, and the occasional walk on the treadmill. Several weeks ago I started a new routine alternating days with the treadmill and the balance ball. I couldn't keep up with it. Quite the disappointment.

    I used to have a full gym set in my house, now I have a Total Gym. When I used these my muscle tone, strength and flexibility were great. It's just too painful now. I've tried, I cannot do it right now.

    Physical therapy might be an option for you. Personally, I honestly cannot miss the time off work to have PT right now.

    I have sort of a routine for stretching that I follow. Every morning in the shower, I wait until the warm water has relaxed me a little, and then I let it beat down on whatever part of my body I'm trying to stretch, and I stretch. Makes for a long shower, but it does help me. Lunchtime at the office, I lie down on the futon mattress in my lunch room and stretch while I listen to the news. My therapist showed me some stretches I can do while sitting at my desk to relieve the stiffness and spasms in my neck/shoulders.

    I agree, it's not perfection, but it's *something*, and surely better than doing nothing.

    Just hearing you mention the cracking in your back makes me want to run to my chiropractor! LOL

    Karen
  4. julie4

    julie4 New Member

    Dear fatigue sufferer

    I do understand exactly what you ean, at the moment its my right hand that's doing "it". I find this tends to last any time betwen hours and weeks but it varies alot. The important thing is to KEEP stretching, YES I know it damn hurts! but it is worth it. Its very tempting to protect the limb , its instinctive but it must be stretched and then it should eventually pass. I find some cracking of my back is good obviously within limits but if I crack I know I have stretched properly.

    When I have flare up days I wake up completely unable to move and have to be unfolded so to speak! It does pass though.

    Hang on in there, and good luck

    JULIE from the UK
  5. rdthewave

    rdthewave New Member

    what you are talking about. I also have found that just this last year the stiffness is a different kind. It's as though the muscles are not elastic any more but dry and brittle and if I were to try and stretch them they might snap or break! My left shoulder has almost become frozen.......I now longer have the range of motion in it that I used to because of the stiffness.......it's always something.

    Tammy
  6. ozgran

    ozgran New Member

    I have the stiffness when I get out of bed or off a chair etc. What is your Total Gym???
  7. Achy-shaky

    Achy-shaky New Member

    However, I find it does come and go and mine has a lot to do with the humidity...the higher the stiffer. I do about 20 different stretching exercises every day but my dilemma is what do you do in between doing the stretches...you can't do them 24/7. I find that when I'm sitting at computer it helps to turn on my heated massaging back cushion to keep the circulation going and the stiffness isn't so bad for those few minutes I can stand to sit.

    I also have decrease range of motion in my left shoulder and my arm feels like the muscles are drawing up - my therapist says it's frozen shoulder but my ortho wants to do an MRI to rule out a worse condition called reflex sympathetic dystrophy because I've had it for months now. You should get it checked out - there are things they can do to treat it, like shots and physical therapy.

    I do get cracking in my neck but not my back and it has gotten better since doing certain stretches. As far as more heavy duty exercise, do not start doing that unless your doctor says it's ok or you can do more damage. Have you had an MRI done on your back?

    Best of luck to you.
    Blessings,
    A.Shaky
  8. Shirl

    Shirl New Member

    Mel is right about all that he said, including the heated mattress pad its wonderful for stiffness, especially in the morning.
    I can't do all the exercise he does, but I do walk (not on concrete), and I use a Nordic Track, its gentle and makes you move the whole body without injury.

    I stretch before I get out of the bed, then I watch my dogs, when they stretch, I stretch! Animals have a way of keeping themselves in shape, although my two are old animals, they will even get on the floor with their legs in the air and 'bicycle', especially my Pit Bull, he does this about 10 times a day!
    My Boxer who is a 100 pound dog, also does this, but not as often as the other.

    When they stretch, I stretch!! Next I am going to teach the Pit how to use the Nordic Track!

    You have gotten some good advice, take what you can do from all of this, and try it.

    Shalom, Shirl
    [This Message was Edited on 03/16/2003]