Everyone knows how it feels—tons of paperwork waiting, chores piling up on the home front, and just feeling so tired thinking about it! Well, it’s a fact of life that we need to get out of bed every day to get to work and perform well. But if you’re not careful, overwork and too much stress can catch up on you. Sacrificing your beauty rest and neglecting your limits can lead to fatigue. And if this goes on for long, and you seem to be feeling exhausted every single day, it might be chronic fatigue syndrome.
What is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?
Unlike the usual state of tiredness that a good night’s sleep can resolve, chronic fatigue syndrome is a long-term condition. Medically, it’s described as a disorder where exhaustion or extreme fatigue doesn’t go away with rest. It usually stems from a seemingly endless chain of stressful and unhealthy habits. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, also known as CFS, it innocently begins as an episode of mild fatigue. This mild fatigue can spring from frequent episodes of work and rest imbalance.
This mild fatigue can go away as soon as you rest. As soon as you get better, it’s natural to get back to your work and other chores. In some cases, however, you may tend to overdo things to catch up with missed activities. This can cause a continuous cycle of work and rest imbalance, resulting to chronic fatigue.
What are the signs and symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome to look out for?
In a sense, CFS is a collection of stressful episodes all rolled up into one large set of “unresolved” stress. When left untreated, this eventually worsens to a point that you feel too burnt out to get going. When CFS-laden days roll out, they constantly come with the following signs and symptoms:
- Strong dependence on alcohol, sugar, or caffeine for a pick-me-up feeling
- Sore throat
- Irritability, major mood swings, confusion, and poor short-term memory
- Joints aches and pains, sometimes with extreme muscle soreness
- Difficulty recovering from sickness
- Mental and physical exhaustion
- Enlarged lymph nodes in your neck or armpits
- Loss of memory or concentration
- Joint pain without any swelling or redness
- Waking up without feeling refreshed from sleep
- Extreme exhaustion lasting more than 24 hours after physical or mental exercise
For chronic fatigue to be officially diagnosed, such symptoms have to occur frequently over a span of six months. IN such cases, it may be a good idea to see your doctor.
What you can do about these fatigue symptoms
Because it’s difficult to pinpoint the main cause of CFS, there’s no real cure for it. Given this premise, symptoms can be managed as they come. It’s also best to avoid any possible triggers as well. Some things you can do include:
- Lifestyle changes like gradual decrease in nicotine and alcohol intake
- A regular bed time schedule
- Incorporating naps throughout the day
- Proper activity pacing and scheduling
- Muscle relaxation techniques and gentle exercises
- Psychological counseling if depression exists
- Anti-depressant prescriptions for people with diagnosed clinical depression
- Alternative medicine techniques such as massage, yoga, and acupuncture
- Taking the right vitamins and supplements to boost health and energy
Additionally, you can also take over-the-counter medications for any pressing symptoms like a headache, muscle pain, or joint pain. Medications like acetaminophen, ibuprofen and naproxen can be quite effective for pain relief.
Read more about how to get rid of these symptoms:
- Headache Remedies – Which Over-the-counter Medicine is Best for You?
- Neck and Shoulder Muscle Pain Relaxers – What Can Help You Ease the Soreness?
- Ibuprofen – The Risks!
The battle with fatigue may be endless… unless you want to have it otherwise!
Multi-tasking and the rush to perform a million tasks every day seems to be the norm nowadays. Women, especially, are seen as great multi-taskers mainly because of the way our brains are hardwired. However, this should not be an excuse to ignore your overall health and accept chores and work as they are. More than anything, don’t forget to make time for yourself! Your body will thank you in the long run!