Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – Having the feeling of tiredness or weakness are the most common ways your body tells you to take a break. You might be working extra hard this week to earn more pay, or maybe the kids are stressing you out by always being over the place. Feeling tired or extra sleepy are normal reactions from your body due to the everyday stress you’re going through. But what if you’re feeling chronic fatigue and low energy for unknown reasons?
You didn’t stress yourself today; on the contrary, you’ve been having a stress-free week, so why are you still feeling so tired and weak? It’s beginning to affect your daily activities because you feel physically and mentally unmotivated. You could be experiencing chronic fatigue syndrome, but don’t fret; we’re here to provide you with the right professional help.
What is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?
Chronic fatigue syndrome, or CFS, is a complex illness or disorder defined by excessive weariness, tiredness, or extreme fatigue. To be fully diagnosed with CFS, the feeling of tiredness both physically and mentally had to have lasted for a minimum of six months.
An underlying medical condition cannot adequately account for the disorder. Unfortunately, physical and medical exertion makes the tiredness get worse, and you can’t seem to sleep it off, either.
Most commonly, a mix of elements such as psychological stress and viral infections could cause extreme and chronic fatigue, but it still doesn’t paint the big picture of why you’ve been feeling this type of way for so long. Diagnosing chronic fatigue syndrome is challenging due to the lack of a particular cause.
The symptoms of CFS, which include mental tiredness and motivation, could be linked to several other diseases and disorders. Since there are no tests for CFS, your doctor must rule out alternative reasons for your symptoms and the cause of exhaustion.
Common Causes of CFS
Although CFS is not easily diagnosable, the causes can be narrowed down to a few. CFS, also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), can leave you feeling like simple physical activities are so difficult, thus the feeling of being tired and exhausted only worsens.
The feeling of not getting the right amount of sleep to kick start your day wakes you practically every morning, not to mention experiencing a random nighttime awakening.
The most common causes could be a viral infection or problems ranging from hormonal imbalance to problems with the immune system. It could also be anemia or hypothyroidism, which is a well-known cause of fatigue
Although there is currently no clear connection between ME/CFS and viral infection, there have been cases where some people experience chronic fatigue syndrome after contracting a viral infection such as the flu, herpes, and pneumonia; this has left researchers wondering if some of these common viruses could be able to induce chronic fatigue syndrome.
An aberrant blood level of hormones produced by the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus can occasionally be observed in CFS patients. Some abnormalities, such as a low level of antinuclear antibodies or immune complexes, are mostly present in CFS patients, but not all. It creates uncertainty when diagnosing CFS because it is still unclear what these anomalies mean.
Problems with the Immune System
Immune system cells, called NK cells, assist the body in battling severe illnesses and diseases. Most ME/CFS patients have NK cells that are less functionally capable of battling other infections.
According to several studies, the more poorly functioning NK cells are in ME/CFS patients, the more the symptoms worsen. Although it is not apparent if this deficit in the immune system is enough to truly produce chronic fatigue syndrome, people with this disorder do seem to have modestly compromised immune systems.
Symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Although the main symptom of CFS is extreme fatigue, it goes beyond that. There are a whole lot of symptoms that contribute to having CFS; these symptoms make functioning in daily life very challenging and tiring. Even simple tasks like taking out the trash can seem like hectic tasks.
The discomfort and exhaustion may persist for more than six months or years. The three core symptoms include weariness causing a six-month or longer reduction in capacity to perform routine tasks. It also includes having difficulty falling and staying asleep, as well as symptoms getting worse following routine mental or physical exercise.
How to Get Professional Help for Chronic Fatigue?
Although there is no cure for chronic fatigue syndrome, some measures focus on relieving the symptoms. Your health professional may prescribe drugs for depression and pain. Since many persons who experience chronic fatigue syndrome also experience or go through depression, your health professional may want to give medications for depression and the issues usually accompanied by it. Your health professional may also consider prescription medications occasionally used to treat fibromyalgia.
Proper counseling and therapy on coping mechanisms to help you deal with CFS symptoms and your normal daily activities can be of great help. Addressing problems concerning problems with falling asleep can also help relieve these symptoms. Your health advisor might suggest abstaining from caffeine or changing your bedtime routine.
Dealing with fatigue can be a stress on its own; dealing with chronic fatigue is even more depressing. Luckily, with the right professional help from Dr. Sobo MD, Stamford, CT, various ways can be adapted to help correctly diagnose this disorder and create a way to manage the symptoms properly.
Now you can go about your daily activities feeling less depressed and much more motivated. Receiving proper counseling and exploring different ways in which chronic fatigue syndrome can be addressed and managed properly can help reduce the pain and discomfort.