1. Skip to Menu
  2. Skip to Content
  3. Skip to Footer
RT @TomKindlon: 🧵 Healthwatch Sheffield & @sheffieldmefm worked on a project to help improve health & social care provision for people with…

Fibromyalgia & Skin Problems

With your skin driving you mad, you can end up spending a lot of time and money shopping around for that magical skin lotion that will soothe your skin and make it baby soft once more. We are endlessly bombarded with amazing new skin products in magazines and on the TV, which promise all kinds of miracles. The most important thing is to treat your skin gently and use skin products with only a few ingredients as there is less chance they will contain something that will irritate your skin. For very dry flaky skin a preparation that contains lactic acid (often represented as alpha hydroxyl on skin product labels) or urea is a good choice, for example, cocoa and shea butters. It can be a process of trial and error to find out what works best for your skin, but remember the most expensive option is not always the best.

It is essential to keep your skin well hydrated and Karen finds that the best time to apply skin lotion to achieve this is straight after a warm bath. "I put the tube of lotion in the water while I am in the bath so that it is warm when I come to put it on," she explains. "This makes it sink in very well, and the effects last a lot longer, making my skin lovely and smooth. I have found that doing this routine about three times a week has made a big difference. If I try and skip it for any reason, I soon regret it and the itching becomes unbearable again."

Here are some other tips on what to avoid and how to soothe sore, itchy, dry skin:

What to avoid:

  • harsh toners, cleansers and alcohol
  • commercial wipes loaded with chemicals and fragrance
  • irritating plant extracts such as mint and citrus
  • skin peel treatments
  • a hot bath (makes itching worse)
  • the temptation to pick, squeeze, scratch or rub
  • nylon stockings
  • tight bras
  • tight clothing, especially in warm weather
  • synthetic fabrics and wool
  • prescription medications with skin side effects
  • any medical advice given at cosmetic beauty counters!

What to try:

  • a warm (not hot) oatmeal bath
  • a cold compress to help numb the area
  • antihistamine medications
  • cortisone sprays or creams
  • keep skin clean and well hydrated
  • moisturise regularly
  • clean skin gently, don't scrub
  • fragrance free baby products
  • loose fitting cotton underwear
  • light cotton bed clothes
  • a cooler bedroom at night
  • wash clothes in a mild detergent
  • a good sun cream

Useful Supplements:

  • Vitamin C-bruising
  • Vitamin A-skin irritation
  • Vitamin D-skin inflammation
  • Zinc-skin repair
  • Colostrum-body repair

You are certainly not alone if you struggle with intense itching, red rashes or look down in perplexity at a huge bruise that you have no memory of creating. These are not symptoms that you would naturally link to fibromyalgia syndrome, but it may be a relief to know that it is all interconnected and not yet another medical mystery. If you work at controlling your overall symptoms of fibromyalgia then it is likely that these symptoms will also subside.

  1. Kim SH, Jang TJ, Moon IS. Increased expression of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor subunit 2D in the skin of patients with fibromyalgia. Journal of Rheumatology 2006; 33(4):785-8.
  1. Enestrom S, Bengtsson A, Frodin T. Dermal IgG deposits and increase of mast cells in patients with fibromyalgia-relevant findings or epiphenomena? Scandinavian Journal of rheumatology 1997; 26(4):308-13.

We use cookies to improve our website and your experience when using it. Cookies used for the essential operation of the site have already been set. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our Cookie Use Page.

I accept cookies from this site.