Magnet therapy has two main forms which are innovative in helping patients fight their fibromyalgia symptoms.
Transcranial magnet stimulation, or TMS, is a physician based magnet therapy provided in a hospital setting and can offer great relief for the psychological aspects of fibromyalgia.
Other magnet therapies are offered through small clinics and result in magnets being placed on the body to increase the blood flow.
Even more magnets can be purchased from the comfort of home and placed on your wrist or in your shoe to fight off the pain in your body.
Using magnet therapy is another innovative way to take control of your fibromyalgia and reduce your symptoms.
What is Magnet Therapy?
Using magnetic fields on parts of the body to produce a health benefit is what magnet therapy is based on.
There is minimal hard evidence from research studies as to the overall effects of some magnet therapy while other therapies are being researched currently in hospital settings.
The idea behind magnet therapy is that the blood or other body part is positively affected by the magnetic field produced by the magnets.
Therapy devices vary widely from jewelry, straps, blankets and even large medical machines operated in hospital settings.
Researchers are having the most positive reactions from a magnet to the brain called TMS, or transcranial magnet stimulation.
With TMS the research is showing it is effective in fighting the psychological related issues to fibromyalgia such as depression, anxiety and mood.
Various Forms of Magnet Therapy
Traditional magnet therapy is provided at small clinics and by individual practitioners and is based on placing strong magnets on your body and letting them sit.
The magnets are thought to improve blood flow to the underlying tissues. As tissue oxygenation increases the feeling of pain and soreness decreases.
Many patients who have tried magnet therapy believe it is helpful in reducing their pain.
With pain reduction the patients are able to move more and be more active which helps to continually reduce their muscle stiffness and ongoing pain.
Transcranial magnet stimulation stimulates parts of the brain through electromagnetic waves. TMS is only provided in a hospital setting by a trained doctor.
Most traditional magnets that are applied to the skin appear to be safe without severe side effects noted.
In some patients, who participated in studies of magnet therapy, they did complain of nausea, diarrhea, and increased menstrual cramps.
For people participating in TMS therapy there are other side effects because the magnets are working on the brain and these include headaches, scalp discomfort, tingling and lightheadedness.
More severe side effects from TMS should be discussed with your physician and include seizures and hearing loss.
Since TMS is provided in a secure hospital setting by a psychiatrist these side effects are closely monitored.
When magnets are applied to the skin there is not a specific dosing level that is recommended yet.
People can buy static and dynamic magnets to use at home or discuss the different levels of magnets with their magnet therapy provider to find the strength that will best work for them.
For TMS patients a highly sophisticated machine is used and the doctor adjusts the dosing based on the patients personal information.
Treatments are administered every couple of days over a period of several weeks to get the full effect from TMS therapy.
Physical Reduction of Pain
Magnet therapy where magnets are applied to the skin, aims to reduce the physical pain fibromyalgia patients are feeling.
Muscle soreness and pain reduction can greatly improve the quality of life for fibromyalgia patients who often suffer for weeks at a time from these pains.
By placing magnets on the sore muscles for 30 to 60 minutes at a time, patients report a reduction in the feelings of pain.
When the physical pain from fibromyalgia is reduced, patients most often also report a reduction in the psychological symptoms of pain.
Researchers continue to study the benefits of magnet therapy on physical pain and the strength of magnets that are most effective for various types of pain.
Psychological Reduction of Pain
The psychological reduction of pain often comes from going through the process of magnet therapy.
The patient is being proactive in their fight against their fibromyalgia which gives them a feeling of empowerment against this unseen medical condition.
Many researchers believe the psychological aspects of any treatment are one of the most important in the effectiveness of the treatment.
Your brain has the ability to increase or decrease how you feel pain, if using magnets can give your brain the ability to decrease your pain; it is worth your time to try them.
Safety and Regulations
At this time there are no regulations in placing magnets against your skin in magnet therapy. There are no specific requirements for the type of magnet, the length of application or the length of treatment episodes.
Because the magnets placed against the skin do not have significant side effects it is likely the government will not be regulating this field anytime soon and you are free to try out different magnet providers.
In the area of TMS there are many regulations because the transcranial magnet stimulation involves the brain of the patient.
Many agencies, including the FDA, are involved in regulating how doctors can provide this service to their patients.
Magnet therapy is just one alternative therapy available for people to use in their fight against fibromyalgia.
No longer are you left to fight this illness with only traditional medications. Through magnets you may find a reduction in your physical and or psychological aspects of fibromyalgia.
Using magnets on the body is a new way of treatment and you should discuss this with your physician before undertaking any new treatment.
If interested in trying TMS treatments you can ask your doctor for a referral to a licensed psychiatrist or neurologist who has specialized training using a TMS machine.
Taking control of your fibromyalgia is the best way to see a reduction in your pain and symptoms, try using magnet therapy in conjunction with your other therapies to see if you feel relief.