Chronic fatigue syndrome is a debilitating and a complex disorder that is characterized by intense and crippling fatigue. This fatigue is not easily alleviated with bed rest. It is worsened or compounded with even mild physical or mental activity.
The common symptoms of chronic fatigue are muscle pain and weakness, impaired memory and poor concentration. Insomnia and lethargy in routine activities are some other symptoms. There is no sure shot cure for chronic fatigue. However, the symptoms of chronic fatigue can be effectively managed.
Certain changes in lifestyle will have to be incorporated to minimize the severity of the symptoms. These changes focus on diet and exercise. An exercise reduction plan is often chalked out for patients. The patient has to refrain from intense exercise, which would otherwise leave him/her exhausted.
At the same time, mild exercise is required to prevent muscle degeneration. This can be taken up in the form of yoga and short walks, which do not tire you out excessively.The diet will have to be closely managed and monitored. It will need a host of essential nutrients and vitamins like protein and the crucial B vitamins, which help to energize the body.
Apart from these, an intake of a healthy and nourishing diet is necessary. This includes fruits, vegetables, fibre and grains, which fuel energy levels and prevent you from getting dips in the blood sugar levels.
Certain antibiotics like amoxicillin may be given. This is because patients suffering from chronic fatigue show a likelihood of developing virulent strains of pneumonic infections.
Taking antibiotics may reduce the chances and severity of developing an infection.
Meditation can help to relax and rejuvenate patients suffering from chronic fatigue. This includes deep breathing exercises, which can help to reduce mental agitation and fatigue. You can be enrolled in self-help groups for practising meditation. Alternately, you can also enrol in group classes, which will help you to socially interact, make new friends and develop a happier perspective towards your illness.
These two important minerals strengthen the bones, reduce muscular cramps and help patients to sleep easy at night.
A condition called as restless legs is very common in people suffering from chronic fatigue. This can be curbed and controlled with an adequate intake of calcium.
This form of therapy works very well with young patients and geriatric patients who are above the age of 70. Children suffering from chronic fatigue can become listless, ill tempered and even aggressive. Extreme behavioural therapy may be needed to provide sound intervention.
Cognitive therapy is needed for older patients who have difficulties in memory, concentration and focus. Forgetfulness and depression may also make these patients very hostile and aggressive. Group therapy helps not only the patients but also their families especially the caregivers who are always at the receiving end and may have to undergo a significant amount of physical and mental trauma.
The herb ginseng forms an integral part in the treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome.
It helps to combat feelings of listlessness, lassitude, debility and difficulties in concentration. Ginseng is a Chinese herb that helps to enhance energy.
The use of certain prescription drugs can be used to treat chronic fatigue syndrome. This is particularly true in the case of pain, insomnia and psychological problems. Drugs like anti-anxiety and anti-depressive drugs may be given to reduce mental trauma, fatigue and anxiety. Pain can be relieved by giving standard pain drugs.
The intake of essential fats like omega-3 fatty acids helps patients heal and recover especially after viral infections when they are grappling with severe fatigue.
Essential fatty acids are found in olive oil, fatty fish, salmon and nuts. They should be taken in the regular diet to ease symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome.
Regular massages done on patients suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome can help to reduce muscular and joint pain. Massages also promote mental relaxation and calm especially when one is feeling unusually tired.
This involves not doing excessive exercise all at once but reducing physical exertion to prevent exacerbation of the symptoms.
The exercise and activity is increased very gradually over a period of time.
In order to prevent slumps in energy levels caused by dipping blood sugar levels, it is recommended that eating 4-6 servings of fruits and vegetables as snacks can prove to be beneficial for such patients.
Cigarette smoking and alcohol can have an adverse reaction on the symptoms of a person suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome.
By reducing alcohol consumption and cigarette smoking, patients can drastically alter the quality of their lives.
An important hormone called as DHEA, which is released by the adrenal glands and is converted into estrogen and testosterone is also responsible for proper memory, mood and sleep patterns. The hormone is found to be very low in people suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome. By administering hormone replacement therapy and increasing the amounts of these hormones, patients are likely to feel better.
Having adequate amounts of fluids throughout the day can keep people pepped up throughout the day and reduces listlessness and fatigue.Fluid intake is very important during the hot summer months, which often aggravate the symptoms.
Stay away from unhealthy, processed and junk foods. These may give you temporary enjoyment but also have no nutritive value and will not do much to alleviate your discomfort.
Stick to natural and organic foods like poultry, bananas, grains, beans and legumes that give energy.
Sea salt and rock salt are beneficial for people suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome. Iodized salt on the other hand can increase high blood pressure. Table salt is also refined and lacking in essential nutrients. Stick to healthier salt versions like rock salt and sea salt.
Lastly, it is important to be in touch with your medical practitioner and take regular feedback. Be consistent with your check ups and follow-ups.