You don’t have to renovate but you CAN adopt these home modifications for fibromyalgia management.
Over the past few years of managing my fibro, I’ve learned to alter my surroundings to make life easier and more comfortable. Here are a few home modifications for fibromyalgia, or any chronic illness, that have made a difference for me:
- Put bright overhead lighting on a dimmer. For many of us with fibro and related conditions, bright overhead light can trigger migraines. I find that dimming this kind of light helps, and also sets a cozy mood in my home.
- Use natural, non-toxic cleaning products. Many of us have sensitivity to chemicals and strong smells. Be sure not to gas yourself out when cleaning your bathroom tile and tubs. Go green and save yourself, and the environment, from all those chemicals.
- Arrange frequently-used items in cabinets that do not require you to stretch or bend. Everyday items that get your heaviest use (a favorite pan, food storage containers, utensils etc.) should be where you can easily reach them. If you live with someone who does not have physical limitations, put items they use higher up or down below, and ask them for help getting items that are not easy to reach. If I had a nickel for every time I tweaked my neck or back trying to grab something off a high shelf…
- Keep your home clutter free. This is good for the mind as well as the body. First is safety. If you have clutter all over the home, you increase your chances of tripping or stepping on something. Think about how fun it is to find a Lego with your bare foot! If you work from home, keep your work area free from clutter so you can focus. Cluttered desk, cluttered mind.
- Keep fresh veggies and fruit cut up and ready to go. A big part of my health turnaround was that I started to incorporate more fresh veggies and fruit and stopped noshing on crackers, cookies, candy, and processed “100-calorie snack packs.” I always liked veggies and fruit but before I learned this trick it was easier and faster to grab something prepackaged. Who wants to cut up jicama or red peppers when you’re running late? Plan ahead and have those goodies ready in the fridge.
- Get “comfort height” toilets if possible. If you are remodeling, consider getting comfort height toilets. These stand just a tad higher and look the same but if you struggle with knee aches and back issues, they are easier to use than standard height toilets.
- Use lever style door handles inside the home, rather than door knobs. A real joint saver for those affected by arthritis. They look more modern in a home as well.
What tricks have you discovered to make your home or office more fibro-friendly? Have you made any of your own home modifications for fibromyalgia management or symptoms? Post your comments here – we’d love to hear from you and we can learn from each other!