May 12th is the Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) awareness day. This is a debilitating disorder and characterized by fatigue, that does not go away even on rest and has underlying medical condition that can explain it. CFS is also known or myalgic encephalomyelitis, or systemic exertion intolerance disease.
The cause of this syndrome is not really known though causes have cited, sometimes, individually and sometimes as combination of factors. This inability to be pinned down to a single cause makes it difficult to confirm the diagnosis and the diagnosis is usually by ruling out other causes of fatigue.
The syndrome has been accepted as a real diagnosed medical condition recently and is seen to commonly affect women in their 40’s and 50’s. Currently there is no cure or treatment so conventional medicine focuses on relieving the symptoms and managing the disease.
Some of the cited causes are:
- Viral infection as a trigger as many people develop CFS after having a viral infection. The Herpes Virus 6. Epstein – Barr virus and mouse leukaemia viruses are implicated though conclusive links have not yet been established.
- Immune system in the people who have chronic fatigue syndrome appears impaired slightly though it is not clear if the impairment is enough to cause the disorder.
- Hormonal imbalance in the levels of the hormones produces by hypothalamus, pituitary or adrenal glands are seen, its exactly significance of this abnormality is still not known.
The symptoms of CFS are quite vague and could be symptoms of many illness, such as infections, or psychological disorders, it becomes necessary to see the physician if excessive fatigue persists
- Memory loss or decreased concentration.
- Tiredness despite a night’s sleep.
- Chronic insomnia, and sometimes daytime drowsiness the CFS mimics sleep apnoea here.
- Muscle pain and tiredness
- Frequent headaches
- Joint aches without redness or swelling.
- Frequent sore throat
- Tender lymph nodes in the neck and armpits.
CFS effects different people in different way, so the treatment is tailored to an individuals specific set of symptoms. There is no definite cure as of now, the treatment would be more towards relieving the symptoms and improving quality of life. Many of the CFS patients are also depressed so sometimes antidepressants are prescribed and sometimes sleep aids are prescribed to improve the quality of sleep.
Though there is no definite treatment for CFS, therapy is found quite helpful. Usually the steps in therapy focus on.
- Pacing oneself so that a balance is maintained, too much of activity on a good day can lead to a bad day.
- Graded exercise also helps. Exercise would have to begin with just a few moments in a day and slowly increased.
- Psychological counselling can help to handle the limitations created by CFS; self management in turn helps in handling the disease.
CFS aggravates with activity and does not recover with rest. Edgar Cayce the pioneer of holistic healing came up with effective treatment of CFS with a group of therapies, which addressed the systemic issues of the condition. The term he had for this was C.A.R.E which stood for circulation, assimilation, relaxation and elimination, these were the areas where the body was assisted so that it could become more normal, and the improved body functioning would help the body increase its vital energy and to heal itself. C.A.R.E included hydrotherapy, diet, spinal manipulation, exercise, electrotherapy, and castor oil packs.
Metaphysically CFS develops as a result of being disconnected from our emotions, and emotions are the bridge that connects the mind and body, this disconnect results with lessening of life energy resulting in chronic fatigue and/or depression.
the feeling of running on empty usually emerges from a pattern created in the childhood, particularly in women, where candid expressions of certain emotions like anger, suddenness or sexual energy is not acceptable, the individual learns to suppress it, or depress it, causing a disconnect from the emotional energy this gives rise to fatigue and disconnect from life. on the emotional plane there is lack of clarity, a scattered mind, that is emotionally run down and overwhelmed, there is also an inability to work priorities.
We need to identify that particular belief that has brought about the disconnect and then work at reconnecting the mind and body, hypnotherapy allows us to reach to the core trigger belief fastest. Once the belief is identified, it can be reframed.
A common affirmation that seem to work is it is safe to express all that is within me, I love, honour and accept all aspects of who and what I am, as a result I am energized expressed and filled with love.