How to recover from chronic fatigue syndrome. 3 things you need to do immediately



Woman relaxing in nature

Myalgic encephalomyelitis or chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) represents a long term condition of physical, cognitive, mental and sensorial exhaustion. Nevertheless, overall health can be enhanced through various methods and therapies, with one example being regular massage - in that regard, a massage chair can be safely used on a daily basis.

On a physical level, chronic fatigue may resemble to flu symptoms, generating a state of weakness, low-grade fever, muscular tension and joint pain. The cognitive impact of chronic fatigue is noted in headaches, confusion, disrupted sleep patterns, weakened memory and the inability to concentrate. Sensorial symptoms include heart palpitations, sensitivity to light and noise. Living with chronic fatigue affects mental health generating mood swings and contributing to the installment of depression. Manifestations may fluctuate in intensity.

The chronic fatigue syndrome - what it is and how it affects you

Chronic fatigue challenges wellbeing regardless of the number of hours we dedicate to our night’s rest. Beyond a reduced performance in our daily tasks with a direct impact on our commitment towards setting and maintaining goals, the most frustrating effect of chronic fatigue comes from a decreased responsiveness to activities we were once passionate about.

However, such inconvenience is found only at a mild level of chronic level. As symptoms reaches a moderate intensity, both movement, as well as continuing work or education become compromised. In its severe form, one is challenged from even basic tasks, while regular sensorial stimuli such as noise and light become overwhelming.

A very severe form of chronic fatigue maintains one bed bound and fully dependent on carers even for eating or hygiene related tasks. Severe forms of chronic fatigue affects 1 in 4 people.

Chronic fatigue is installed around the mid 40es, though the first manifestations can be noted as early as in the mid 20es. Women are 4 times more vulnerable to chronic than men. There is no scientific consensus in regards to possible causes, though accumulated mental stress is frequently mentioned as one of the main factors determining chronic fatigue.

Diagnosis of ME/CFS

As no assessment protocol is officially recognised by the medical community, a chronic fatigue diagnosis is installed by riling out other conditions. Furthermore, patients should report the ongoing manifestation of at least 4 symptoms for a period of 6 months in order for doctors to include chronic fatigue as a prospective condition.

How to recover from chronic fatigue and feel better

A cure for chronic fatigue is yet to be discovered. Health goals we can set in regards to chronic fatigue are limited to reducing the intensity of its manifestations. There is no agreed medication to address the spectrum of manifestations associated with chronic fatigue. Medication can be prescribed for certain symptoms. However, effects are only noted on a short term. Psychotherapy may also help coping with the overall state caused by chronic fatigue.

Woman relaxing in massage chair
A full body massage can help reduce the symptoms associated with chronic fatigue

The overall wellbeing of people living with chronic fatigue can be addressed through the following areas:

Sleep, rest and relax

Deficient sleep patterns are registered as a manifestation and not a cause of chronic fatigue. Beyond the inability to achieve rest regardless of the number of hours of sleep, people living with chronic fatigue may also be challenged by insomnia. Reversed sleep patterns which maintain one awake at night are also frequently reported.

Excessive sleep should be avoided, as it may generate additional problems such pressure sores and even blood clots. Sleep patterns can be gradually changed. However, any progresses are recommended to be monitored by a doctor. Healthcare practitioners can provide various strategies such as breathing techniques for relaxation or massage techniques which patients can implement to prevent falling asleep during the day and thus, delay any advancements in regaining the optimal sleep patterns.

Relaxation also requires specific management. Activities which we value as intellectually or creatively stimulating and entertaining such as reading should be enjoyed within full consideration of our wellbeing. An essential fact to remember is that imposing additional mental activity can also deepen chronic fatigue.

Diet changes

A poor diet is frequently mentioned as one of factors contributing to the appearance of chronic fatigue. Therefore, any strategy to regain energy should be built around a healthy, balanced diet. People living with chronic fatigue are advised against diets which exclude certain nutrient groups (eg: carbohydrates or fats). The overall wellbeing can also be increased by introducing vitamins and supplements.

Lifestyle changes

Regardless if we recognise the power of meditation, lifestyle changes we may consider should always be accompanied by moments of reflection on the direct effect of any activity we engage in.

Though physical activity is praised as a holistic source of health and wellbeing, when struggling with chronic fatigue, we should assess how a particular set of exercise or practice impacts us. When over solicited by certain exercises or frequency of training sessions, chronic fatigue can manifest itself ever more severely. Furthermore, recovery from physical activity is challenging. Therefore, physical activity is recommended to be gradually introduced in accordance to both a person’s concrete endurance, but also to their lifestyle. For example, dancing can prove a more rewarding and energising activity than training. Also, a full body massage can help recovering after an intense workout.

How a professional massage chair can help you recover from the chronic fatigue syndrome

Studies conducted on monitoring the heart rate variability and oxygen saturation confirm professional massage chairs as highly beneficial for chronic fatigue.

Consistent use of a full body massage chair indicated significantly reduced values in both physical and mental fatigue, as well as in overall exhaustion. Massage chairs operate on vibration and movement following various adjustable directions which may also include stretching. Joints, muscles, and sensory receptors of the skin are also stimulated through heating pads.

One of the most important benefits of full body massage chairs is noted in regards to their stimulating effect on blood circulation. Overworking the heart, a poor blood circulation amplifies the effects of chronic fatigue. In contrast, a smooth blood flow allows more nutrients to access organs, while releasing toxins.

The relaxing effect of full body massage chairs is connected to the release of endomorphs and the decrease in cortisol levels, contributing to a more restful sleep. Nevertheless, massage chairs can be easily installed at a one’s greatest convenience, providing muscular and joint stimulation and relaxation for moderate and even severe cases of chronic fatigue.

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