Chronic Fatigue. What is it? How do you know you have it? Is it the same as Fibromyalgia?
Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia are conditions that are difficult to diagnose, donít have any lab tests to support a diagnosis, and are very misunderstood. Itís best to find a practitioner that has done extensive research and studying on the subject. One such doctor practices in Maryland. Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum has been treating and researching Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia for over 30 years. He has a number of educational books that are easy to read. Heís also working on creating standard lab tests so other medical doctors can test for it and insurance companies will cover treatments. He also has classes for medical practitioners of all types to learn about the condition, know what questions to ask and what to look for.
There are a few questions you can ask yourself to know if you might have Chronic Fatigue.
∑ How do you know if youíre fatigued and not depressed? Do you have interests but donít have the energy to pursue them? Then you probably arenít depressed but fatigued.
∑ Are you exhausted all day but canít sleep at night? Do you toss and turn then when the alarm clock goes off you have the hardest time getting out of bed?
∑ Do you forget where you put things? Or you blank on someoneís name, like the word is on the tip of your tongue but you canít get it out? Hereís the trick: If you canít find your keys but you remember what to do with the keys, youíre fine. You donít have Alzheimerís.
These are things that people worry about but are hallmark symptoms of CFIDS. You may not be depressed just because youíre tired. You need proper sleep but no matter how tired you are you canít get to or stay asleep. And you probably donít have the beginning stages of dementia even though you seem to lose stuff and have a hard time remembering words. It is important to get checked out by someone who has studied this problem in depth. Itís always good to rule out the bad stuff.
Chronic Fatigue has numerous situations that can trigger the condition. Hereís just a small sample:
∑ Adrenal fatigue/stress: If youíre constantly under stress or drink lots and lots of caffeinated beverages this can cause your adrenal glands to become exhausted. Without help, you wonít get them back.
∑ Improperly treated car accident: If you were in a car accident but didnít get medical treatment you could have whiplash that has now settled in your muscles and tendons. If the whiplash isnít taken care of by an acupuncturist, massage therapist, chiropractor or other medical professional, the pain can not only settle in the area but begin to spread to other areas of the body.
∑ A severe illness that wasnít completely eradicated: Having colds, the flu, bronchitis, even mononucleosis (also known as Epstein Barr virus) and not taking all of your anti-viral or anti-bacterial medication could leave a low level infection in your body. When you eat food, the little buggers will steal nutrients from you, leaving you deficient. Deficiencies in nutrients will cause multiple problems in the body.
∑ Poor or improper diet: If your diet is less than stellar, you arenít getting the proper nutrition to feed your nerves, muscles and organs. Over time these deficiencies will show up as problems. Examples of nutritional deficiencies are:
o B vitamin deficiencies can cause nerve problems such as chronic headaches
o Calcium, magnesium or potassium deficiencies can lead to muscle weakness or muscle cramping.
o Vitamin A deficiencies can lower immune functions.
o Vitamin D helps in the absorption of calcium and phosphorus. Itís believed that a lot of medical problems are caused by vitamin D deficiencies including SAD and possibly Multiple Sclerosis. Research is still being done.
∑ Allergies: See the page on allergies. Allergies can affect your digestive system. If that occurs, even if you have a fantastic diet you wonít absorb the nutrients your body needs.
If you are tired all of the time, think you eat pretty well, and nobody seems to be able to help you or you donít want to take medication to get better contact me. I have done research on my own. Itís not easy to get your energy back but itís very possible. Call the office and set an appointment if you want to know more about what I can do to treat your Chronic Fatigue.