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Stevan Mcgrath

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Dec 2, 2014
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, or CFS and depression can go hand-in-hand. These disruptive conditions present in different patterns and with varying severity levels that can be miserable for the person experiencing it. CFS is a disorder that causes symptoms like extreme tiredness, body pain and cognitive difficulties. It is difficult tdiagnose, and even understand in many cases. While underlying medical dysfunction is often associated with it, low mood and depression can compound this condition tremendously.


The medical term depression is used in reference to low mood, avoiding activities and harboring both sadness and anxiety. Since depression is not always a psychiatric disorder and can be a normal response tcertain life-events, the aspect of a dual CFS-depression diagnosis can be rather dynamic. When present and active, depression can impact how a person thinks, feels and perceives their circumstances greatly. More than feeling week or bluesy, depression, like CFS, can require long-term treatment tmanage and can be enormously debilitating. Alarmingly, approximately eighty percent of people suffering from depression fail treceive treatment for their symptoms. Individuals that suffer from depression may alsexperience significant cognitive impairment seasonally, which can be confusing when trying trecognize the differences between CFS and depression.

The difference between Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and depression

Determining a diagnosis of CFS, depression, or a combination of the twcan be daunting and overwhelming since each disorder is a multi-faceted condition with many similar symptoms. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is bio-physical, meaning that it can be caused by a viral infection while depression cannot. Next, Chemical sensitivity and fibromyalgia or widespread musculoskeletal pain is linked specifically tCFS. Depression does not result in a compromised, suppressed immune system like CFS and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome sufferers present deep-sleep dysfunctional brain patterns while depression is only associated with general sleeping difficulty. Substance abuse problems, prior personal-conflicts and even positive life events that result in change, like a new job or graduation, can contribute to, and result in depression.

Symptoms of depression

  • Intensified feelings of sadness, hopelessness and a general overall change in personality are some of the warning signs of depression. Symptoms of depression include:
  • Loss of interest in regularly enjoyed activities
  • Appetite and weight changes
  • Sleep disturbance
  • Low energy
  • Reckless behavior;
  • Severe sadness

Major depression can occur in one isolated episode, or it can resurface multiple times depending on the severity of the condition. There are many different types of depression including: distress and anxiety, atypical, psychotic, catatonia, seasonal, melancholic or a combination of several features. Depression is not age-specific and can affect children and teens as well as adults.

Symptoms of CFS

The symptoms associated with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome include:

  • Memory loss and lack of concentration
  • Extreme tiredness regardless of adequate rest
  • Muscle pain and headaches
  • Joint pain without swelling
  • Consistent sore throat; and
  • Swollen or tender lymph nodes in the neck and armpit areas
While the symptoms of CFS are general and can each be attributed many different kinds of illness, it is important not too overlook them and consider these characteristics as a valid disorder.

You are not alone

Singers Stevie Nicks, Cher, and Michael Crawford as well as, Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist, Flea are all popular, well-known individuals that suffer from the autoimmune disorder CFS and depression. Unfortunately, severe exhaustion despite adequate sleep, and environmental hypersensitivity are not par for the course when it comes celebrities. Anyone can suffer from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and depression.

Common ways manage CFS and depression

There are several common ways to manage Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and depression such as regular exercise, anti-depressant and and general body management. Managing sleep, physical and mental rest, ensuring a healthy diet and practicing conscientious relaxation or breathing techniques can all help improve CFS, depression, and the symptoms associated with these conditions.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome nor depression should ever be taken lightly. These conditions cause major difficulties and decrease the overall quality of life for the individuals that deal with these disorders and their associated symptoms. While CFS is difficult even for medical professionals diagnose, depression should also not be attempted the understood alone either. Professional help dealing with these symptoms will result in the most effective, successful, quick treatment response available.
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