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Chronic Fatigue Specialist

OC Integrative Medical Center

Integrative Medicine located in Newport Beach, CA

Chronic fatigue is more than just feeling tired or sluggish. This debilitating condition often causes prolonged exhaustion that can affect every aspect of your life. At OC Integrative Medical Center in Newport Beach, California, Chitra Bhakta, MD, takes a holistic approach to care. Dr. Bhakta understands that chronic fatigue is a complex condition that requires a combination of therapies to effectively treat. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Bhakta, call or book an appointment online today.

Chronic Fatigue Q&A

What is chronic fatigue?

Chronic fatigue syndrome, or myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), is a complex disorder that causes extreme exhaustion that lasts for longer than six months. It’s more than feeling sleep deprived.

In fact, many chronic fatigue sufferers rarely feel refreshed after sleeping. Over time, this can lead to concerning symptoms like dizziness and constant brain fog.

Many people with chronic fatigue feel unheard by their doctors. That’s why Dr. Bhakta approaches every chronic fatigue diagnosis with the respect and understanding that her patients deserve.

What are the symptoms of chronic fatigue?

The symptoms of chronic fatigue vary from person to person, but some of the hallmarks of this complicated condition include:

  • Insomnia or oversleeping
  • Extreme exhaustion
  • Enlarged lymph nodes
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Dizziness that worsens after lying down
  • Increased headaches
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Night sweats
  • Sore throat
  • Diarrhea 
  • Nausea
  • Low-grade fever

If you have chronic fatigue, both physical and mental exertion can exacerbate your symptoms. Some sufferers experience increased fatigue and malaise that lasts for 24 hours or more after physical or mental activities.

What causes chronic fatigue?

The exact cause of chronic fatigue is unknown, but most medical experts agree that it’s likely triggered by a number of genetic, environmental, and hormonal factors, such as:

Viral infection

Chronic fatigue symptoms share many similar characteristics with the symptoms of mononucleosis and other viral infections. Many people with chronic fatigue experience some kind of infection before developing chronic fatigue symptoms.

Immune response

Some experts believe chronic fatigue syndrome is an autoimmune disorder, similar to lupus, which lowers your immune function.

Hormone imbalance

A hormone imbalance from the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, which regulates your body’s fight-or-flight response, can cause symptoms of chronic fatigue.

Nutritional deficiencies

Many people with chronic fatigue are deficient in B vitamins, magnesium, vitamin D, and many other nutrients.

What are the treatments for chronic fatigue?

Along with taking note of your long-term symptoms, Dr. Bhakta recommends a two-day exercise test to effectively diagnose chronic fatigue. This test evaluates both your exercise capacity and recovery time.

The best way to treat chronic fatigue is to determine which factors in your life might contribute to your symptoms.

Dr. Bhakta has her own line of supplements to treat nutritional deficiencies, boost energy levels, reduce sleep disturbances, and relieve anxiety and depression from chronic fatigue. Along with these high-quality supplements, she may create an exercise plan for you that helps keep you active and strong without overexerting yourself.

If you’re experiencing signs of chronic fatigue, call OC Integrative Medical Center or schedule an appointment online today.