If someone has been seriously depressed all their lives and now has fibromyalgia, how do you get them to excerise and eat right when all they will do is sleep and eat? With fibromyalgia it is supposed to be important to exercise, but with depression they do not have the energy or the ability to do it.

Answered by: Philip Muskin

The ideal way to address this problem is for the person to obtain professional help and treat the depression. Along with that the person can start graded exercise, i.e. start low and go slow. Over time the person will have increased energy as the depression is treated and s/he develops greater exercise tolerance.

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Philip Muskin, M.D.
Chief: Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry 

Dr. Muskinís research and publications include mood disorders and AIDS, the psychodynamics of the failure of empathy towards patients with AIDS, panic disorder, treatment of anxiety and depression in medically ill patients, maladaptive denial of physical illness, personality disorders in the primary care setting, the role of religiosity in patientsí decisions regarding do-not-resuscitate status, the psychodynamics of physician-assisted suicide, and the decision making capacity of medically ill patients.

He is the editor of Complementary and Alternative Medicine and Psychiatry, pub...
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