Stress, Grief & Emotional Trauma: Triggers for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
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Stress, Grief and Emotional Trauma: Triggers for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Stress, Grief and Emotional Trauma: Triggers for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Most people know that stress and emotional trauma can affect their health. But what is not widely known is how stress can become a major culprit that leads to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS).

Unresolved emotional and mental stress that lingers on causes a huge energy drain in the mind and body. All bodily mechanisms that run 24/7 require various energy levels, and our mind is not even aware of our deeper underlying stresses that the organism has to put up with, in order to keep a balance.

How Is Stress Draining Your Body?

Stress over works the adrenal glands, which specifically deal with all survival responses in relation to any form of stress. Prolonged stress leads to adrenal exhaustion technically called Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

CFS triggers and typical causes for energy drains are: anger, fear, worry/anxiety, depression, guilt, overwork, physical or mental strain, excessive exercise, sleep deprivation, chronic pain, toxic exposure, hypoglycemia, nutritional deficiencies, relationship issues, emotional trauma, transitions, moving house, emigrating to another country, over thinking and studying for exams.

What Is Really Happening In Your Body On A Hormonal Level?

Researchers discovered that abnormally low morning concentrations of the hormone cortisol may be correlated with more severe fatigue in CFS patients, especially in women. CFS patients have reduced overall cortisol output within the first hour after they wake up in the morning, which is actually one of the most stressful times for the body.

An overwhelming amount of peer-reviewed medical literature documents pituitary and hypothalamic dysfunction in CFS patients. As a result, patients often have multiple hormonal deficiencies including thyroid and cortisol. Physicians often miss these hormonal deficiencies because standard blood tests lack sufficient sensitivity to detect such centrally mediated deficiencies. They often believe a normal serum cortisol level or ACTH stimulation test generally rules out significant hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis dysfunction.

The current evidence supports using physiologic doses of cortisol as an appropriate component of a multisystem treatment protocol for CFS. Specialists should consider a therapeutic trial of cortisol in the majority of these patients, especially those with signs or symptoms consistent with adrenal dysfunction, low blood pressure and/or serum levels that are low or in the low-normal range.

What Other Actions Will Reduce Stress?

In order to counteract the negative effects of stress you can start with little, common pleasures like down time, a walk in nature, reading a book, or making time for your hobbies and good company.

Even 5-10 minutes of rest and sleep here in there during the day is a good remedy for CFS, as it is the quickest way to shift the mind from a hyperactive state into rest and relaxation, which is what the body is craving in order to regain some more energy.

A 20 minute meditation practice whereby your breathing is slowed down, simple yoga where the mind is comfortable, not agitated trying to do too much, allows the body to repair itself naturally. It is important to incorporate such routines into your schedule since they facilitate healing and the help stop the constant energy drain.

Many people who are not comfortable with their own powerful emotions are even more exposed to the symptoms of CFS. In dealing with emotions it is important to just accept them without the need to over analyze, control or fix them, as this creates more tension which adds to more stress and inner struggle.

Resources:

Stress Triggers Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

How a Stressful State Leads to Chronic Fatigue

 

Stress, Grief and Emotional Trauma: Triggers for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome was last modified: May 4th, 2017 by Kent Holtorf, M.D.

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