LIFE & HEALTH CHALLENGES

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is an illness characterised by extreme fatigue or tiredness, sleep abnormalities, pain and other symptoms that are made worse by exertion, that doesn’t go away with rest and can’t be explained by an underlying medical condition. It is also known as myalgic encephalitis (ME). Even if a chronic illness isn’t curable, there’s much that people can do to improve their overall health and sense of wellbeing.

Living with a chronic health condition profoundly impacts our quality of life and our ability to participate fully in our relationships and life activities in general. It’s normal to feel sad, angry, helpless or worried about the future as there may be unexpected challenges, including family and relationship issues, alterations in body image and fluctuating energy levels, that also impact on our sense of self.

We can’t always change the outcome of a disease, but we can change the way in which we experience that outcome, and there’s much we can do to improve our health and create an environment for profound healing.

What are the symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?

  • Sore throat, tender lymph nodes and a flu-like symptoms
  • Disrupted sleep
  • Aches or pains in the muscles, joints or head
  • Problems with thinking, concentrating, memory loss, vision, clumsiness, muscle twitching or tingling
  • A decrease in blood pressure or dizziness
  • An increased heart rate or shortness of breath with exertion or on standing
  • An upset stomach – nausea, bloating, constipation, diarrhoea
  • Fluctuations in weight

How to deal with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Discussing all aspects of the disease and treatment with doctors and specialists is essential so you can work out a way to manage your symptoms and find out what works best for you. Consider consulting with an integrative or lifestyle medicine practitioner who can assist you with a holistic approach to managing your symptoms and/or recovery.

You’ll benefit by learning how to:

  • Live with the physical effects of the illness
  • Minimise side-effects from treatments
  • Make sure there is clear communication with doctors
  • Maintain emotional balance to cope with negative feelings
  • Gain deep restful sleep
  • Maintain confidence and positive sense-of-self.

Immediate help

  • Speak with your GP or other trusted and qualified health professional.
  • For crisis support, call Lifeline on 13 11 14

Treatment

There is no one-size-fits-all treatment. It can take time to discover the best treatment for each person, so it’s best to work closely with your (holistic) GP or other trusted and qualified health professional to find what works for you.

In addition, complementary treatments are now widely acknowledged as being integral to a person’s healing regimen. When we actively engage in a fulfilling life and take care of ourselves physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually, we create the ideal physiology in which our health can be regained or improved.

Factors that contribute to a positive healing outcome

Many factors contribute to a positive healing outcome for people with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. These factors can help you begin or continue your journey of recovery:

  • Addressing physical as well as the emotional distress, isolation and frustration that may accompany a chronic illness
  • Improving exercise and sleep levels along with other healthy lifestyle practices
  • Guidance in managing the emotional rollercoaster of exhaustion, frustration and isolation
  • Improving your nutrition and ability to manage stress as both these impact considerably on your microbiome (gut bacteria) which is the foundation of your immune system
  • Meditation and living mindfully can stimulate your immune system to function optimally
  • Rest and patience are essential components of management of CFS

Toolkit

Some of these practices can help you to calm your mind and improve your wellbeing and are found on our Toolkit page:

  • Keys to improving the quality of your sleep
  • Meditation practices
  • The Four Cs – Keys to peace of mind and resilience

Some of Petrea King’s podcasts may be helpful and can be found on our Podcast page:

  • Dealing with a difficult diagnosis
  • Relax better and reduce stress using mindfulness
  • Eating well in times of stress
  • Talking Lifestyle Radio: Petrea’s life and Quest’s approach to healing

Wellbeing resources

Wellbeing books including Your Life Matters – a Guidebook for Life and Food for Life by Petrea King
Meditations including Be Calm, Sleep, Learning to Meditate

Related articles

How Quest for Life can help

While medical teams focus on eradicating disease, Quest for Life’s focus is on empowering people to heal. Quest can help through our residential programs, online courses, and workplace workshops.

  • Our 5-day residential Quest for Life program nourishes, educates and supports you to adopt a healthy lifestyle which creates an environment for profound healing. You’ll learn about the factors that contribute to a positive healing outcome.

Online courses: Befriending Anxiety, Beyond Burnout and Healing Sleep

Our Self-Paced On-Demand Online CoursesBefriending Anxiety; Beyond Burnout and Healing Sleep – are delivered over 4 video modules and provide practical, positive and easy-to-follow guidance and advice. They encourage and help you to identify and implement strategies to build your resilience, and to incorporate these into your own personal plan for each course.

Befriending Anxiety, Beyond Burnout and Healing Sleep courses cost $99 each (or $250 for all 3) and include:

  • 4 self-paced Video Modules
  • Integrated workbook with reflective questions
  • Personal Plan template and guide
  • Additional resources – research and links
  • Downloadable meditation MP3s

Quest for Life knows how to help: our internal research results show that participants feel better after attending a program and that this improvement increases over time.

NDIS Participants

Quest for Life is a registered NDIS Provider of NDIS Services. Our Residential Programs can be funded by the NDIS for NDIS Participants with disability including Parkinson’s Disease.

Please call the Quest Programs team on 1300 941 488 or complete the contact form at the bottom of this page. The Programs Team will assist you to decide which program to attend and provide you with information regarding costs and how to use your plan to access our services. Quest can communicate with your plan manager and support coordinator and assist you in the booking process.

Chemical-free Environment

At Quest we recognise that many people being treated for chronic illness may have chemical sensitivities. No chemicals are used in the grounds or buildings at Quest to ensure a safe and healthy environment for people with life-threatening illnesses.

Quest for Life knows how to help: our internal research results show that participants feel better after attending a program and that this improvement increases over time. On our programs, you’ll be nourished, educated and supported to create an environment for profound healing.

If you’re living with Chronic fatigue syndrome, fill in the Contact Form below and one of our Program Advisors will be in touch to answer your questions or to ascertain the most appropriate program for your needs.

“This was exactly what I needed – exactly when I needed it. Leaving feeling renewed, refreshed, with greater hope, confidence and excitement for the future with wonderful and practical tools.”

– Tim

Funding Options for Residential Programs

Self-Funding

Quest subsidises all privately or self-funded places to ensure the cost of our programs remains affordable to individuals. This allows us to reduce the fee from $4,400 to $2,800.

$2,200 Shared room (Early bird* $2,100 – must be paid 30 days in advance)
$2,800 Single room (Early bird* $2,700 – must be paid 30 days in advance)

Fees effective 1 July 2023.

Subsidies and Financial Help

Through generous grants, donations and fundraising, additional subsidies and financial help is available for a range of circumstances and anyone experiencing financial stress will be considered. We review each case individually and we do not means test. All applications are conducted via phone with a friendly member of the Programs intake team.

NDIS

Quest is a registered NDIS Provider. Residential Programs can be funded through plan-managed and self-managed NDIS plans.

DVA

We work with Department of Veteran Affairs (DVA) White Card or Gold Card holders to make applications to the DVA Health Approvals Board.

Worker’s Comp Insurance

Residential programs can be covered by workers compensation insurance on a case-by-case basis.

Call our Programs Advisers Today
1300 941 488