Physical Therapy Treatments For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Physical Therapy Treatments For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome | Capitol Physical Therapy | Washington DC Physical Therapists

Every single one of us can get tired from time to time.

Feeling tired after a long day is normal, especially if you have a very busy or active life or you’ve had a particularly hard day with mental stress.

It’s important to understand the boundary between feeling fatigued and having chronic fatigue syndrome.

But just how tired is too tired to meet this threshold?

Chronic fatigue syndrome is a condition where a person has extreme fatigue day in and day out for at least six months.

There are some signs to look for if you think you might have chronic fatigue syndrome, such as general body pains and soreness, headaches, brain fog, and sleep issues.

These symptoms may look common at first and you might even think you’re just having trouble getting rid of a cold.

But if they’ve been going on for a while, there may be something deeper at play.

Fortunately, chronic fatigue syndrome can be managed, and you might benefit from physical therapy for headaches and chronic pain physical therapy to have a better quality of life, despite your condition.

For now, let’s find out more about chronic fatigue syndrome, the causes of it, and what you can do about it.

What Is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?

Fatigue can occur due to a variety of reasons.

Some of these reasons are not alarming, and you can recover from feeling fatigued after getting some rest.

If you’ve had a particularly busy day, or you’ve just run a race (after getting a running analysis to avoid needing physical therapy for sports injuries, of course), you’ll obviously be tired.

That’s completely normal.

Physical activity exerts energy, and it is expected that you will need some time to recover afterwards.

However, when your fatigue lasts for more than six months, then it’s sensible to consider getting a medical assessment.

The persistence of fatigue, even with adequate rest, is a strong indicator of chronic fatigue syndrome.

Suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome can get in the way of your daily activities.

You may feel that you are constantly in a weak state or are lacking energy that isn’t relieved by sleep.

Symptoms Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

People experience symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome differently.

You may feel just a few of the symptoms listed, or all of them.

The severity of your symptoms may also vary.

However, one common characteristic is feeling inexplicably exhausted after completing daily tasks that include light physical or mental activities.

This exhaustion doesn’t simply go away with rest.

The general symptoms you might experience with chronic fatigue syndrome include:

It’s important to mention that given the nature of these symptoms, you may confuse chronic fatigue syndrome with other conditions, like the common cold or the flu.

However, these conditions persist only for a few days, whereas chronic fatigue syndrome has symptoms lasting six or more months.

If your symptoms persist for more than a few weeks, you may want to consider consulting a physical therapist.

Physical therapy can help manage your symptoms and improve your life with this condition, even though symptoms can vary and change from time to time.

What Causes Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?

Unfortunately, the causes of chronic fatigue syndrome are not yet fully understood.

Although, it’s suspected that some systems in the body might trigger it, if not working properly.

These can include:

  • Your energy production system, which your body uses to process oxygen and food into energy
  • Your immune system
  • Your autonomic nervous system, which controls body functions like blood pressure, digestion, heart rate, and breathing
  • Your digestive system

Chronic fatigue syndrome can be a very serious and dangerous condition if not addressed early, so it’s important to know and detect the signs and symptoms before it gets worse.

You may also have an increased risk of developing chronic fatigue syndrome if it runs in your family, if you’ve had an infection, or if you’ve suffered from physical trauma.

Keep these considerations in mind if you’re feeling any symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome.

There are different strategies a physical therapist can use to help improve your well being, such as:

There’s currently no known way to prevent chronic fatigue syndrome, but education combined with physical therapy can help in the management of symptoms.

Diagnosing Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

In order to diagnose chronic fatigue syndrome, other health problems that cause extreme fatigue have to be ruled out.

Symptoms may be similar to those of sleep disorders, anxiety or other mental health conditions, diabetes, anemia, and other health conditions.

Your symptoms will be taken into consideration and medical tests will be ordered to confirm your condition.

However, there isn’t a specific test that can diagnose chronic fatigue syndrome.

Your physical therapist may be able to notice early symptoms and follow up with questions, such as:

  • What times of the day are you feeling fatigued?
  • For how long have you felt fatigued?
  • Do you experience pain all over your body?
  • Are there any changes in your ability to do physical activities?
  • Do you experience sleep issues?
  • Are there any changes in your ability to think clearly?

After this, your physical therapist may run some tests, based on your answers.

How Can Physical Therapy For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Help | Capitol Physical Therapy | Washington DC Physical Therapists

How Can Physical Therapy For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Help?

The goal of a physical therapist is to get to know your specific case and create a personal management plan to help you deal with chronic fatigue syndrome.

It’s important that you follow your treatment plan to get the best results for managing your condition.

The main focus when it comes to this condition is helping you manage its life changing consequences.

One major factor with chronic fatigue syndrome is general discomfort.

The overall feeling of things being “not right” can be frustrating, but physical therapy can help you manage that feeling to better participate in your daily activities.

Fatigue, pain, and weakness are significant as well.

Through various physical therapy techniques, including dry needling, you can improve your strength, endurance, and energy, and manage your pain.

By creating a wellness program as well, you can enjoy a more active lifestyle in spite of your condition, which can help you manage related depression.

Beyond these, your physical therapist can help with the following approaches:

1. Education

Chronic fatigue syndrome can be a complex disorder with many different variables.

What’s more, these variables can change from person to person.

Your physical therapist can help by teaching you strategies you can use to manage the way your condition affects you specifically.

In particular, this can help with energy conservation, pain management, and better sleep.

2. Strengthening Exercises

It’s easy to lose your physical strength while dealing with chronic fatigue syndrome.

Your physical therapist can provide strengthening exercises for you to maintain your physical abilities.

3. Manual Therapy

When your energy is low, you’re also likely not moving as much as you could otherwise, which can result in feeling tight or stiff.

Manual therapeutic techniques can help reduce the severity of these symptoms.

These techniques can help mobilize your skin, bones, and soft tissues to help keep these components healthy.

4. Relaxation Techniques

Your physical therapist may also consider going over some relaxation techniques with you.

This is because chronic fatigue syndrome can often occur with anxiety or stress.

Stress and anxiety can often weaken your overall health and cause additional fatigue.

Relaxation techniques can help to reduce your stress and alleviate both general fatigue symptoms and ones due to chronic fatigue syndrome.

Book Your Appointment With Capitol Physical Therapy Today

Do you suspect you may be dealing with chronic fatigue syndrome?

Or, have you already received a diagnosis?

If so, Capitol Physical Therapy can provide you with the care and knowledge you need to manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life.

Book your appointment with Capitol Physical Therapy today.

Capitol Physical Therapy
1331 H St NW #200,
Washington, DC 20005


9560 Pennsylvania Ave. # 202,
Upper Marlboro, MD 20772


Capitol Physical Therapy offers orthopedic and other pain related solutions, with our versitile team of physical therapists in Washington, DC