The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that as many as 2.5 million Americans suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). Yet, many people don’t know what the disease is or how people are affected by it. Understanding CFS can improve your confidence as a family caregiver to an older adult with the condition.
CFS is a condition that makes a person feel very tired, but the fatigue isn’t explainable by any other medical condition. When a person is physically active or does an activity that requires them to think, the fatigue can get worse. However, it doesn’t get better when they rest or take a nap.
The disease is hard to diagnose because there isn’t a test for it. Instead, doctors may perform many tests to rule out other problems that could be causing the fatigue. There is no cure for CFS, so once a person is diagnosed, the treatment they receive is aimed at making symptoms better.
CFS is a complex condition with many other possible symptoms in addition to extreme fatigue. Other symptoms that may occur are:
- Difficulty concentrating.
- Memory loss.
- Sore throat.
- Swollen lymph nodes in the armpits or neck.
- Joint or muscle pain.
Causes and Risk Factors
Doctors are uncertain what causes CFS. One possibility is that certain people are predisposed to the condition. The disease is eventually triggered by some other factor, such as:
- A virus.
- Trouble with their immune system.
- A hormonal imbalance.
Though the cause of CFS is not clear, doctors have identified some risk factors that make it more likely a person will get CFS. Some of the risk factors are:
Age: CFS is most commonly diagnosed when a person is in their 40’s or 50’s. However, it can occur in people of any age.
Gender: Women are at a much higher risk for CFS than men are. Some experts believe that the higher diagnosis rate among women may be because men aren’t as likely to tell doctors about their symptoms.
Stress: People who aren’t able to manage stress develop CFS more frequently.
Having CFS can make it very difficult to accomplish tasks, including making meals and maintaining a household. Home care services can help older adults with CFS to do the things they simply aren’t up to because of their condition. Homer care services providers can clean the house and do laundry. They can also prepare healthy meals for the older adult, which may improve their overall health. Home care services providers can even remind them to take their medications and drive them to medical appointments.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Homecare Services in Naples FL, call the caring staff at Dial-a-Nurse today. Naples: (239) 307-0033. Ft. Myers: (239) 307-0065.
In 1995 he became Administrator of Dial-a-Nurse nursing agency, the oldest nursing agency in the Southwest Florida succeeding his mother who started the company 37 years ago. He is also President of Nevco, Inc., an educational healthcare training company begun in 1988.
Mr. Wolfendale has worked with the U.S. Department of Commerce on various Missions to improve the quality of life around the world by development of supportive healthcare programs. In 2005 he traveled with U.S. officials and addressed the Italian National Government assisting in the creation of Nurse Education mandates for that Country. In 2006 he was invited and spoke with the National Institutes of Continuing Education in Eastern Europe on healthcare education and developmental mandates, and most recently represented the United States at the European Union in Lake Balaton, Hungary in 2011. In 2014 he traveled with the U.S. Department of State to Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam in an effort to improve caregiver knowledge and training.
Mr. Wolfendale has worked with a number of non-profits in contributing and creating curriculum to improve the quality of life in third-world countries since 2001, and notably created a successful program in Odessa, India that has been modeled in other areas of the world. In his backyard, he has worked with local Goodwill Industries to provide curriculum and training to underserved individuals who have obtained employment as a result of educational training. He was the Congressional appointment to the Governor's purple ribbon task force in 2013, and has worked to educate caregivers in all aspects of Alzheimer's training.