Facebook Pixel

My Top Ten Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Warning Signs of Impending Crash

By HERWriter
Rate This
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome related image BDS/PhotoSpin

In the world of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, there are crashes and there are crashes. Some lift within an hour. Some linger or deepen for days, weeks, months. Years. No telling in the beginning whether it will be hard or mild, short or long. So each downturn needs to be treated with care, like the potential plague it is.

I'll try to describe my experience with my own personal gauntlet of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms when they begin to swarm.

1) Brain fog

Though "brain fog" is the term usually employed for this, really, "fog" is not an accurate description. That sounds ... quiet ... restful ... or at least blank. What I get isn't foggy. It's neither quiet nor restful. And it certainly isn't blank. It's a kaleidoscope of images and thought fragments jitterbugging and flickering through my head.

Can't finish the thought I started. Can't remember the beginning of the thought I just started ...

2) Vertigo

Not just dizziness, I've discovered. Vertigo is a hallucination of the inner ear. The body's messaging systems are confused. I've tasted many flavors of vertigo. When the room starts lurching, that's vertigo. When I feel like my head's going to roll off, that's vertigo too. When I can't tell if I'm going to bump into the wall, and have to plant my feet to keep from swaying, I am havin' some vertigo.

3) Vibrating

"Paresthesia" is the fancy name for the buzzing, vibrating, numbness, tingling, inner tremor, and other bizarre physical sensations. Mostly it's in my arms, hands, face and head. When it's very bad it spreads to my legs and feet.

4) Breathing problems

I'll find myself panting and gasping for air. More delicate, but no less distressing, is the silent whistle, air blowing out from between O-shaped lips. Or then there's the one my husband says sounds like a sigh. But it's not a sigh. It is a frequent, extended expulsion of air from my lungs, trying, I guess, to get more carbon dioxide out and make room for more oxygen to get in.

5) Orthostatic intolerance

That Gotta Fall Down Right NOW feeling. The weight of gravity increases dramatically. Legs weigh a million pounds, standing saps me, and I am in danger of toppling. Blacking out is just around the corner.

6) Tinnitis

Everything from the ocean's roar, to a wall of impenetrable white noise and static, to rumbles of thunder ... to what I thought for months was the whispering tick-tick-tick of a watch. Only it wasn't. That ticking was inside my right ear.

7) Swollen glands

Under and behind my ears, the feeling of pressure and fullness begins to thicken. The more the sense of crashing builds to a crescendo, the more swelling I'll have. As the tide recedes, so does this symptom.

8) Visual disturbances

What I see can get weird. I may not be able to decipher what I'm reading. I'll have trouble grasping what people are doing and why. REALLY can't find what I'm looking for. What I'm seeing seems broken up, fragmented. Peripheral vision winks out, and I don't see stuff that isn't right in front of me.

9) Fine motor lack of control

Fingers get clunky and unwieldy. It becomes hard to write. Or knit. Or do up buttons.

10) Talking gibberish

Sometimes it isn't obvious to the observer that I am imploding into a fine CFS crash. Other times it is. Like when I begin to sound like an imbecile, getting tangled up in words. Bogged down in attempts to stammer out the simplest of statements. Or when I have to ask you to repeat yourself ... repeatedly.

Only way to handle this one? Shut my mouth and keep it shut.

These are some of my main symptoms when I'm beginning to crash. If I drop everything, and go to bed, away from stimuli, sometimes I can shorten the relapse. This stuff can make life difficult in the short term. When they gang up and remain entrenched for months and years, well ... then they're the tip of the iceberg of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

I spent 15 years losing the battle against Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Three years ago, I found treatment that worked for me, and now I am making a comeback.

http://www.ncubator.ca and http://ncubator.ca/blogger

Add a Comment22 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

Is there a way to share this post on Facebook? I don't see a share button here but I just started a website and fb page and I LOVE your descriptions here!

July 24, 2015 - 4:14pm
HERWriter (reply to Anonymous)

Re: your question about sharing on Facebook, you should see Facebook, Twitter, etc. icons at the far right side of your screen, one on top of the other. Let me know if you can't find it.


July 24, 2015 - 5:19pm
HERWriter (reply to Anonymous)

Thanks, glad you liked it.

You can always copy the link to the article https://www.empowher.com/chronic-fatigue-syndrome/content/my-top-ten-chronic-fatigue-syndrome-warning-signs-impending-crash

Once the link is posted, you should get the title and blurb appearing in your post.

July 24, 2015 - 4:39pm
EmpowHER Guest

It's important to find out if you also have left peripheral vestibular dysfunction - legions in the brain that affect balance, coordination and vertigo. They don't know what causes it - could be genetic, from concussions, drugs, alcohol. I found out I had it same time as CFS, all starting from going to a neurologist. An MRI revealed it, along with a strange test prescribed from a nose-throat-ear specialist.
As for the rest, elderberry syrup, an anti-viral, is very helpful to take regularly. I had a crash last week after running out of it weeks before & one swig of it immediately got rid of it for the most part. It wasn't psychological cause I take many other things that generally do help - olive leaf tincture, resvetirol, turmeric, black pepper, garlic, chaga, omegas. Ashwaganda is good for nerves & other things so best to take at night. I make chamomile tea & add ashwagnda powder & magnesium powder and take a gaba pill.
These are expensive so I have to rotate but find the elderberry imperative - just a little a day helps so much. And some can be found in food so it's a waste to buy capsules - turmeric, black pepper, garlic. And of course a healthy diet in general with lots of spices, herbs and vegetables.
Good luck and thank you all for sharing!

July 6, 2015 - 6:58am
HERWriter (reply to Anonymous)

Thank you for passing on all your suggestions.:)

July 6, 2015 - 7:13am
EmpowHER Guest

Oh the vibrating! Not heard of this in anyone but me, but it's so annoying! I'm so fed up of buzzing that I now can't stand any kind of tapping of jiggling etc, I'm always asking DH, is the sofa vibrating? Or stop fidgeting your legs! Of course, it's only me. Sigh.

July 6, 2015 - 12:34am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

I vibrate too. Used to think I had something else wrong with me, but now understand it's one of those funny cfs symptoms. It settles in bed eventually, isn't there in the morning, but starts up after about twenty minutes. Very annoying.

July 13, 2015 - 12:22pm
HERWriter (reply to Anonymous)

My doctor said, "Oh, you have parasthesia." Which for a brief ridiculous moment made me feel better, like, now I knew what it was. Then I realized that this was just another way of saying "You're vibrating and buzzing, nobody knows why."

July 13, 2015 - 4:30pm
HERWriter (reply to Anonymous)

One theory is that this may be from a central nervous system problem, that messages are not being carried properly -- maybe like not quite being able to get a radio station to come in clearly. Something like that. I'm no doctor and have no science background except what I've cobbled together since getting sick.

I can't say what made mine go away -- yes, it has gone away, except during minor setbacks. My guess is, a combination of avoiding food sensitivities, taking omega-3 oil, vit's B12 and D and resting when the rushing starts up in my ears (also rare).

Don't know if any of these would make a difference for you. I do know that even something that seemed as pervasive, all-encompassing and never-ending as that symptom has been virtually eliminated for me, so there is hope.

July 6, 2015 - 5:03am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Jody Smith)

Interesting. I recently seen a homeopath that said my nervous system was rattled, and how... Have cut the grains, dairy etc. but just today realised I'd stopped the omega three and b vitamins as was put on homeopathic remedies, and the trembling has got worse.
Thank goodness for these forums. Thank you.

July 14, 2015 - 2:24am
Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy
Add a Comment

We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Get Email Updates

Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!