Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Fatigue not Laziness! can you feel the difference?

Friday, 20 March 2009 at 11:48 ·
Fatigue is not just tired muscles. It is the effect of the disease on the nerves which go to the muscles; and also the effect of the disease on the sensory nerves. The sensory nerves affect touch, sight, taste, smell and hearing. So when you get fatigued, you can sometimes experience blurring of vision or slurring of speech.

What happens when you get fatigued can differ from person to person. Fatigue often worsens existing symptoms, or can bring on symptoms which only happen when you are fatigued. Also, old symptoms can come back, with the nasty habit of reminding you of your last attack. Severe fatigue can also bring on episodes of vertigo, where the ceiling spins.

You can also feel ill, as if you have flu. There are certain things which can bring on fatigue. When you know what these things are, fatigue is easier to avoid. What brings on fatigue can differ from person to person.

However, some of the most common things are: a hot day, humid weather, a hot bath, over-exertion, over-tiredness, a heavy meal, smoking and stress. Fatigue can also be one of the major symptoms of a food allergy.

Why Do You Get Fatigued?

Any movement of any muscle requires energy. Energy starts from glucose, and to convert glucose into energy the muscle needs oxygen. Oxygen is brought to the muscle by the blood circulating through it. If there is not enough oxygen because of poor circulation, substances like lactic acid accumulate and prevent the muscles from working. The oxygen supply to the muscles is increased when the blood flow is improved by exercise.

Of course, the whole process of energy production and muscle contraction is a highly complex one. However, it is important to understand the essential link between blood-flow, oxygen and the working of the muscles. Fatigue happens when the blood flow, hence the oxygen flow to the muscles, is inadequate.

Fatigue can also be caused as a direct result of damage to the central nervous system. This can cause heat sensitive fatigue and result in feeling of lassitude.


One of the problems about having Fibromyalgia is that many people - particularly those who are young and energetic - want to prove that they can still do all the things they used to. So they over-compensate and make themselves ill by over-exertion. Young people with Fibromyalgia who have not told their employer, their workmates, or even their family, are more at risk of over-exertion. The ones who seem to suffer most from over-exertion are wives.

Time and time again, women in that situation are called ‘lazy’ if they do not visibly do all the chores. A woman with fibromyalgia may feel so weak  she is only fit to slump in the armchair. Not wanting to be labelled ‘lazy’ or ‘selfish’, many of these women force themselves to cook a meal, clean the house, do the laundry, the ironing, or whatever. The kind of chores which women are expected to do are particularly energy-consuming. The easiest place to suffer from over-exertion is in the home. Fatigue is the likely result.

Many women suffer this kind of unfair treatment from their families because they may look perfectly O.K. The ‘invisible’ symptoms of fybromyalgia, such as fatigue, are not obvious to other people in the same way as a limp or a hacking cough. Continual over-exertion such as this can only lead to trouble; worsening symptoms are almost inevitable as there is no let-up in the constant strain.

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