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What are the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome?

Chronic fatigue syndrome has several signs and symptoms: fatigue, memory and concentration difficulties, unrefreshing sleep, and extreme exhaustion lasting 24 hours or more after physical or mental exercise. As fatigue can be a symptom of many illnesses, such as infections, it is important to be evaluated by a primary care provider for persistent or excessive fatigue, prior to seeking psychological care.

How common is chronic fatigue syndrome?

The prevalence rate of chronic fatigue syndrome has not been well studied, but is estimated to effect over 1 million Americans. It is also suggested that nearly more than half of these individuals are undiagnosed.

What is CBT treatment for chronic fatigue syndrome like?

For all disorders, the CBT therapist starts by educating clients about their diagnosis and about CBT, helps clients set goals, and teaches clients essential thinking and behavioral skills. When working with clients with chronic fatigue syndrome, the CBT therapists puts special emphasis on identifying and modifying maladaptive behaviors that have a role in maintaining fatigue and related symptoms, but also work on identifying and increasing adaptive behaviors. Individuals are also helped to identify and correct maladaptive thoughts and beliefs, and increase self-efficacy for managing fatigue. Additionally, many individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome have depression, anxiety, and sleep disorders, and CBT is also used to treat these conditions.