What is ME?
Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) is a disorder that can affect all types and ages of people. There has been some debate as to whether this is an illness at all and it is often likened to CFS.
It causes mild to severe fatigue, which is so sometimes so severe that people are unable to get out of bed and become housebound. It restricts family and social life and education in the younger generation.
Are CFS and ME the same condition?
ME is becoming the more commonly used name for this condition, and the description of CFS is gradually being phased out. Some professionals and sufferers alike think it can be perceived as derogatory and judgmental towards someone who suffers such a debilitating level of fatigue. It is estimated that some 250,000 people in the UK suffer from ME.
What are the symptoms?
These are some of the symptoms of this complex condition:
- Difficulty sleeping & tiredness after exertion
- Disturbed and unrefreshing sleep
- Widespread muscle weakness and joint pain, worse after exertion
- Standing, walking and sitting can become difficult
- Cognitive difficulties e.g. difficulty thinking, short term memory loss
- Sleep and temperature disturbances
- Noise and light sensitivity
How can it be treated?
Like CFS, there isn’t a specific treatment programme for ME, most patients manage their symptoms by changing how they think and behave until the symptoms ease. It is important that ME sufferers find physical and mental activities they are comfortable with. Over the counter pain killers, antidepressants and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy are standard treatments for both ME and CFS. SoeMac has been shown to help people with CFS to improve their sleep and energy levels.