Complementary And Alternative Therapies
Eating a healthy diet, and using herbs and homeopathic remedies as recommended, may help reduce the debilitating symptoms of CFS, and may improve overall energy. Counseling, support groups, meditation, yoga, and progressive muscle relaxation are stress management techniques that may help as well.
- Save your energy. Your doctor may suggest that you slow down and pace yourself, so that you do not overdo it one day and pay for it the next. The goal is to maintain a steady, moderate amount of activity that includes regular exercise.
- Get regular exercise. Your doctor may suggest that you see a physical therapist to create an appropriate exercise program. At least one study shows that people with CFS who exercise have fewer symptoms than those who do not exercise.
- Reduce stress. Stress can make CFS symptoms worse. Guided meditation or deep breathing may help you relax. Studies show Qigong, in particular, helps reduce symptoms of fatigue and poor mental functioning.
Nutrition and Supplements
Avoid refined foods, sugar, caffeine, alcohol, and saturated fats. Eat more fresh vegetables, legumes, whole grains, protein, and essential fatty acids found in nuts, seeds, and cold-water fish.
The use of herbs is a time-honored approach to strengthening the body and treating disease. However, herbs can trigger side effects and interact with other herbs, supplements, or medications. For these reasons, take herbs only under the supervision of a health care provider.
Symptoms Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Doctors have narrowed down some of the triggers for chronic fatigue syndrome. Everyone is different, though, and may experience symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome differently, but theCenters for Disease Control and doctors classifychronic fatigue syndrome as having at least four of the following physical symptoms for at least six months:
- Post-exertional malaise
- Unrefreshing sleep
Chronic fatigue syndrome can only be diagnosed when other diseases have been ruled out, but thats the problem: You may experience fatigue as a symptom of other health conditions.
Alternative And Holistic Therapies
Alternative or holistic therapies may provide some comfort to those with a long standing illnesses but be cautious of any method that claims to offer a cure for chronic fatigue. If the therapy has not been published in respected peer-reviewed journal or is expensive you should talk to your GP before trying it. Until further research is done, no-one can be certain whether someone with CFS/ME might benefit from alternative therapies.
Don’t Miss: How To Deal With Fibromyalgia Fatigue
How Is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Treated
Treatment is determined by your healthcare provider and based on:
- Your overall health and medical history
- Extent of the condition
- Your tolerance for specific medicines, procedures, or therapies
- Expectations for the course of the condition
- Your opinion or preference
- Medicine, including corticosteroids, antidepressants, and others
- Light-intensity aerobic exercise
- Dietary supplements and herbal preparations
- Psychotherapy and supportive counseling
Limit Your Caffeine Intake
Caffeine seems like a great way to improve your energy, but it comes with consequences. Caffeine can give you a false sense of energy and lead you to overdo it, according to Montoya. A little bit of caffeine may be fine for some people. Just be careful to not overexert yourself and make sure your intake doesnt impact your sleep.
Also Check: What Doctor Treats Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Where Can I Get Support
Even in its mildest form, chronic fatigue can have a significant emotional and financial impact on your life. A lack of understanding and awareness about CFS/ME means patients can experience disbelief, and even discrimination, from friends, family, health and social care professionals and employers.
People need wider support in order to continue to manage aspects of their life. Information on entitlements to welfare benefits, accessing health and social care and others sources of support for patients and carers are available from Action for M.E.
Action for M.E. has a number of booklets that may be useful for people living with CFS/ME, their families and their health professionals. They also offer resources and services for children and young people affected by chronic fatigue and their families.
Natural Remedies For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
In functional medicine, the goal is to find out the root cause of problems like chronic fatigue. The reality is there isn’t just one cause of chronic fatigue syndromeit has many underlying pieces.
Still, there are a few steps you can take to start rehabbing your energy levels. Here are eight tips I recommend:
Read Also: Best Anti Fatigue Mat For Garage
It Was Like Being Buried Alive: Battle To Recover From Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Is it physical or mental or a combination of the two? And why are treatments for CFS hotly disputed? In an extract from her book Cure, Jo Marchant tells the story of Samantha Miller, one sufferer of the controversial condition
- Read an interview with Jo Marchant, author of Cure, which looks at the minds proven ability to heal the body
It was like being buried alive, Samantha Miller says matter-of-factly, fixing me with blue eyes as she munches on falafel. I was exhausted, with terrible joint pains. It was like having flu all the time with no certainty of recovery. I couldnt do anything. I was trapped.
Today, she looks vibrant and younger than her 46 years. She is immaculately dressed in 1950s-inspired floral pinks with a fluffy beret and bright lipstick her blonde hair is twisted prettily and fixed with a white carnation. Weve met for lunch in a Turkish restaurant in north London and, as we talk, she seems energetic, fun and very sharp. Its hard to believe she has spent several years fighting her way back from hell.
In the late 1990s, Miller was living in Hampstead, north London, and teaching art at a short-staffed, under-funded secondary school. She found dealing with kids tiring. Children still have the invincibility of youth, she says. They havent been crushed by anything yet. She was also a keen mountain biker and swimmer and led a hectic social life. If something needed doing, she would pick up the slack. And she was always striving to be perfect.
Support Your Immune System
Chronic infections may be an underlying cause of chronic fatigue, but they are widely undiagnosed.
What to do: In addition to getting tested for underlying infections, consider blends of Siberian ginseng, samento, sarsaparilla, guaiacum, astragalus, resveratrol, and cat’s claw for their immune-strengthening properties.
Schedule Injections For Weekends
My injections for my rheumatoid arthritis really kick my butt, like I cant get out of bed unless its to go to the bathroom, says Genevieve L., 30, of Melbourne, Australia. Thankfully the exhaustion is the worst on the first day and improves each day after. Ive learned to just schedule my injections for Fridays after work so I can sleep it off on Saturday, she says.
When To Call A Doctor If You Have Cfs
If you meet most of the criteria listed above, you may need to consult with your physician for validation. If your symptoms are getting worse or if you dont see any signs of improvement, you should also get in touch with your physician for help. While there isnt a well-established method used to fix CFS completely, you can use many ways to experience relief from the symptoms.
Your doctor may cross-reference your symptoms with other pre-existing health conditions such as sleep apnea, hypothyroidism, and heart disorders. Be sure to offer as much information as you can to get an accurate explanation about your syndrome.
Recommended Reading: How To Combat Allergy Fatigue
Causes Of Extreme Fatigue
Many people struggle with fatigue, which has many causes some obvious, others not so much. Causes of chronic fatigue include poor quality or not enough sleep, a bad diet, not exercising, and metabolic and hormonal imbalances. It becomes a vicious cycle when fatigue sets in and worsens your fatigue.
But you can manage your fatigue when you first figure out the root causeor causes of feeling tired all the time. Some reasons why you might feel extreme fatigue include:
- Adrenal burnout
- Thyroid imbalances
- Other hormonal imbalances like testosterone, estrogen, and cortisol
- Being a perfectionist
- Being around overly critical or negative people
- Not having a positive mindset
- Food sensitivities
- Mitochondrial dysfunctions mitochondria are those little power plants in your cells. Malfunctioning mitochondria can create massive energy crashes.
- Overexercise a good workout should leave you feeling energetic and strong. Overexercising or overtraining can have the opposite effect, creating chronic fatigue that zaps your energy and mood.
- Toxicity including things like environmental pollutants, but also less-obvious toxins, including mold, mercury from amalgams, and electromagnetic fields from electronics.
This list goes on, and oftentimes multiple factors create or worsen fatigue. On the other hand, chronic fatigue might result from one primary reason, like poor sleep, stress, a bad diet, or not getting the right nutrients. These five strategies may help you boost your energy.
What Is Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome is persistent and crippling fatigue lasting 6 months or longer. People living with ME/CFS often experience other symptoms, like unrefreshing sleep and muscle aches. The condition is also sometimes called chronic fatigue syndrome.
Doctors do not know what causes ME/CFS, and there is no cure. You may be able to manage symptoms with cognitive-behavioral therapy, exercise, and medications, like antidepressants and sleep aids. The goal of treatment is to make symptoms as manageable as possible to increase your quality of life.
You May Like: Does Depression And Anxiety Cause Fatigue
Key Points About Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
- Chronic fatigue syndrome is characterized by profound tiredness.
- Symptoms often worsen with physical or mental activity.
- In addition to severe fatigue, symptoms include light sensitivity, headache, muscle and joint pain, difficulty concentrating, mood swings, and depression.
- Treatments may include medicines, exercise, supplements, and counseling.
Strategies To Boost Your Energy
Any plan to fight fatigue begins with taking good care of yourself. Start with these tips to help you manage chronic RA fatigue and regain energy.
1. Talk to your doctor about controlling RA inflammation. You dont need to battle fatigue on your own working with your doctor to get any underlying RA-related inflammation under control can help significantly. Cytokines proteins produced by cells can amplify inflammation, which may have a direct influence on brain receptors to cause fatigue. So the first step is to work with your rheumatologist to get inflammation under control,” Ali says. “Medications that decrease inflammation often decrease fatigue.”
Don’t Miss: Body Aches Chills Headache Fatigue
Consider Injections Instead Of Pills
Sometimes the same drug can affect you in different ways depending on the method in which it is administered, Dr. Cohen says. Take methotrexate, for instance with pills you may have to use more medication to get the therapeutic dose because it has to pass through the entire gastrointestinal tract, she explains. Using an intramuscular injection often allows us to use less medication as it goes directly to your bloodstream. This may help lessen side effects such as fatigue for some patients. Read more common questions about methotrexate.
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
There’s a long list of possible symptoms that someone with chronic fatigue syndrome can have. The most common ones include:
- severe fatigue, which can make it hard to get out of bed and do normal daily activities
- sleep problems, such as trouble falling or staying asleep, or not having a refreshing sleep
- symptoms getting worse after physical or mental effort
- symptoms or dizziness that get worse after standing up or sitting upright from a lying down position
- problems with concentration and memory
- headaches and stomachaches
Also Check: How To Overcome Hypothyroid Fatigue
Meal Plan And Prep When You Can
One of the best ways to ensure a nutritious diet is to meal plan and prep food ahead of time. On days that you have more energy, plan out what you will eat for the rest of the week and prep your basic ingredients or cook the meals all the way through. Your meals will be all ready to go. You wont have to worry about what youll eat on a given day. Even better: Enlist someone to help you so you can get more done without exhausting yourself.
Memory And Concentration Problems
Memory aids, like organizers and calendars, can help with memory problems. For people with ME/CFS who have concentration problems, some doctors have prescribed stimulant medications, like those typically used to treat Attention-Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder . While stimulants might help improve concentration for some patients with ME/CFS, they might lead to the push-and-crash cycle and worsen symptoms. Push-and-crash cycles are when someone with ME/CFS is having a good day and tries to push to do more than they would normally attempt .
Recommended Reading: Army Fatigue Leggings Plus Size
How Is Cfs Diagnosed
CFS is a very challenging condition to diagnose.
According to the Institute of Medicine, as of 2015, CFS occurs in about 836,000 to 2.5 million Americans. Its estimated, however, that 84 to 91 percent have yet to receive a diagnosis.
There are no medical tests to screen for CFS. Its symptoms are similar to many other conditions. Many people with CFS dont look sick, so doctors may not recognize that they indeed have a health condition.
In order to receive a CFS diagnosis, your doctor will rule out other potential causes and review your medical history with you.
Theyll confirm that you at least have the core symptoms previously mentioned. Theyll also ask about the duration and severity of your unexplained fatigue.
Ruling out other potential causes of your fatigue is a key part of the diagnosis process. Some conditions with symptoms that resemble those of CFS include:
- severe obesity
- sleep disorders
Because of the similarities between symptoms of CFS and many other conditions, its important to not self-diagnose. Talk to your doctor about your symptoms. They can work with you to get relief.
Who Is At Risk For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Because the cause of CFS is not known, its hard to know what might put someone at risk for getting the condition. However, certain factors are seen more often in people with CFS. These factors include:
- Gender. CFS happens up to 4 times more often in women than in men.
- Age. CFS commonly affects middle-aged people, but people of any age can get it.
You May Like: Nausea Constipation Fatigue Back Pain
S To Overcome Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is a chronic illness characterized by extreme fatigue that lasts for more than six months. This fatigue cannot be explained away by an underlying medical condition. In fact, one of the diseases principle challenges is that its impossible to diagnose with laboratory tests. However, some professionals believe it is closely related to adrenal fatigue or system wide inflammation of the body.
The process for diagnosis usually begins with ruling out possible underlying diseases and chronic conditions until the only choice left is chronic fatigue syndrome. Left untreated, it decreases stamina, memory and concentration.
Chronic fatigue syndrome can result in strained relationships with friends and family, especially when it remain undiagnosed and/or untreated. Guilt, anxiety and anger are all common emotional responses for those fighting chronic fatigue.
Currently, over 1 million Americans are suffering from this debilitating illness that manifests with a lack of energy and motivation, and women are 24 times more likely than men to be diagnosed.
Treating Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Although there is no cure for chronic fatigue syndrome there are a number of ways to help manage your symptoms.
Because of the complexity of the illness, its changing nature and the number of possible symptoms, different things work for different people. Your GP may be able to support you through managing your individual symptoms. They may be able to refer you to a specialist service or to a service that will help you to manage individual symptoms but this depends on the services available in your area.
To decide what treatment is right for you, you should look at the evidence, including published research and patient surveys, and make sure you fully understand what the treatment involve, before you make a decision. You have the right to decline any treatment option you do not feel comfortable with.
Your GP may suggest some of the following treatment options.
Recommended Reading: Antivirals For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Take Breaks From Your Phone
Technology can be a catch-22 when it comes to resting. Playing Candy Crush, watching Netflix, or surfing the web may feel like a good way to wind down but its not real rest and may even make you more anxious. In addition, the blue light emitted from phone, tablet, and laptop screens can also mess up your sleep. Dont use screens within an hour of bedtime, Dr. Cohen cautions.
What Are The Symptoms
Symptoms include some, or all, of the following:
- constant, overwhelming mental and physical tiredness
- sleep disturbance, un-refreshing sleep
- post-exertion malaise
- muscle pain and/or weakness or joint pain
- headaches, poor concentration or poor memory recurring sore throats or flu-like symptoms
- feeling sick,
- symptoms of IBS , such as wind/bloating, stomach pain, diarrhoea and constipation
- intolerance, or sensitivity, to alcohol, caffeine, some foods or medications
CFS/ME is poorly understood, with no specific diagnostic test. Diagnosis is made by excluding other causes of the symptoms.
Don’t Miss: Herbal Remedies For Adrenal Fatigue