8 Signs of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome You Might Be Ignoring

Updated: Feb. 10, 2017

Since chronic fatigue syndrome can develop gradually over time, it’s easy to write off these otherwise common symptoms. But if you’re checking off more than one of these boxes, talk to your doctor about whether you could have this debilitating and complex disorder.


Chronic fatigue syndrome symptom: Muscle weakness

Unlike weakness that results from a tough workout or a day spent moving heavy boxes, people with chronic fatigue syndrome often complain of muscle weakness that has no obvious cause. Limbs may feel difficult to move, making it difficult to complete day-to-day tasks. These daily habits can help anti-age your muscles.


Chronic fatigue syndrome symptom: Sensitivity to light

Photophobia, or sensitivity to light, is a sign that you may have chronic fatigue syndrome. Symptoms of photophobia include getting headaches from certain kinds of artificial light and having to squint to see without irritation. Check out these secrets your eye doctor won’t tell you.


Chronic fatigue syndrome symptom: Physical sickness from activity

Sufferers of chronic fatigue syndrome often become nauseated or actually vomit from normal physical activities that didn’t used to pose a problem. People with chronic fatigue syndrome can typically take more than 24 hours to recover from these illnesses. Be aware: Nausea and vomiting can also be a sign of a heart attack.


Chronic fatigue syndrome symptom: Confusion

People who have chronic fatigue syndrome often complain that they have trouble concentrating, which may come from a lack of true rest, another CFS symptom, or from a combination of other symptoms. These 14 weird brain exercises can help you get smarter.


Chronic fatigue syndrome symptom: Swollen lymph nodes

When we get a virus, our lymph nodes may become inflamed. Since chronic fatigue syndrome results from several different viruses, you may notice that your lymph nodes are swollen. Eat these foods to fight inflammation in the body.


Chronic fatigue syndrome symptom: Memory loss

Memory problems can be frightening, especially if they show up out of the blue. If you have trouble recalling information or memories all of a sudden, and you’re also experiencing some of these other symptoms, it could be chronic fatigue syndrome. Check out the everyday habits of people with an impressive memory.


Chronic fatigue syndrome symptom: Muscle or joint pain

Muscle and joint pain that have no obvious cause may be a sign of chronic fatigue syndrome. Inflammation is the body’s way of fighting infection, and as it fights against the viruses that may cause CFS, the pains could be evidence of that battle. These home remedies can help you manage muscle soreness and pain.


Chronic fatigue syndrome symptom: Unproductive sleep

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is often marked by a lack of productive sleep. Sufferers report getting adequate hours of shut-eye but still feel exhausted the next day. Other sleep issues that sometimes come with CFS, such as insomnia, may also cause fatigue. (Related: Here are signs you’re not sleeping deeply enough.)

Reader's Digest
Originally Published in Reader's Digest