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National Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Awareness Month

National Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Awareness Month

It’s National Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Awareness Month, and in recent years, chronic fatigue syndrome has been recognized as a serious chronic disease.

Wondering what it’s like to live with chronic fatigue syndrome? This article dives into it.

Living with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome


Signs and symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome include fatigue and extreme exhaustion, loss of memory or concentration, headaches, restless sleep, unexplained joint or muscle pain, and enlarged lymph nodes.

Signs of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome


People who have chronic fatigue syndrome can be hypersensitive to even normal exercise and activity and can experience extreme exhaustion more than 24 hours after activity.

Sensitivity to Exercise and Activity


Some people’s chronic fatigue syndrome may be triggered by things like viral infections, immune system problems, and hormonal imbalances.

Viral Infection Trigger


It is more likely to affect you if you are in your 40s or 50s, are a woman, of have difficulty managing stress. Learn more.

Your Risk of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome


Chronic Fatigue Syndrome can increase or contribute to depression, work absences, social isolation, or restrictions on your lifestyle.

Complications of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Tough Talks to Plan for the Future

Covered Bridge: Tough Talks Now Can Save Hurt Feelings Later

Have you ever noticed how much stuff you have packed in your house? It seems to have a life of its own! There was a point where I thought, “If I bring one more thing home, something will pop out of a window.” The thought of moving with all these treasures in tow is daunting.

Now imagine if you had to do so without notice or against your wishes. That would be a nightmare.

Sadly, I remember that a few short years ago, when my grandpa was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, his primary care doctor told him and my grandmother that it was time to downsize from their 4-bedroom home on 15 acres in the country to something a little more manageable.

He felt a part of his independence was being taken from him. But fortunately for him, being newly diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, he had a little more say in his plans for the future.

I am sure some of you have older friends and family members who could find themselves in that situation or worse. At some point, they might not have a say in their future and need to transition suddenly from independent living to a group or assisted-living facility, whether the move is short-term or permanent.

It seems that talking about this tough situation ahead of time could save everyone a lot of pain later.

There are some early signs that it is time to talk about moving options. A change might be in order if they have trouble getting dressed or making their own food. Sudden changes in behavior or severe forgetfulness are more alarming and require fast action to protect your loved one.

Help your friends or loved ones have this conversation with their primary care doctors to assess their needs and their next steps and to make the process as easy and stress-free as possible.

There you have it. And it wouldn’t hurt for all of us to plan for the future by simplifying our lives and possessions as we go along!

Morgan Gunder is a community and broker liaison for Reid Health Alliance. Born in the South and raised in the Midwest, she is a wife and mother with a passion for traveling, learning, and technology.

Pregnancy Health Problems

Pregnancy Health Problems

If you have a preexisiting health problem or develop a new one during your pregnancy, you may need more care. Pregnancy health problems that can occur include:

Blood Pressure Related Conditions

While your blood pressure is always an important part of your overall health, when you’re pregnant, it becomes even more important to monitor it. High blood pressure can constrict the blood vessels in your uterus that supply your baby with oxygen and nutrients.

Chronic Hypertension

This is high blood pressure before you become pregnant. If you have it, it won’t go away after you deliver.

There are usually no signs, the only way to diagnose it is with blood pressure monitoring.

Your doctor may prescribe medication or liestyle changes. If you’re already on hypertension meds, talk to your doctor before trying to conceive. ACE inhibitors, a common kind of blood pressure meds, can be bad for your baby.

Pregnancy-Induced Hypertension (PIH)

Some women develop high blood pressure about 20 weeks into their pregnancy. PIH will usually go away after you deliver.

There are usually no signs, the only way to diagnose it is with blood pressure monitoring.

PIH can be controlled with meds during pregnancy.


This is high blood pressure and protein in your urine that usually develops after 30 weeks. 25% of women who have PIH develop this too.

There are usually no signs, the only way to diagnose it is with blood pressure monitoring.

Preeclampsia can be controlled with meds during pregnancy.

HELLP syndrome

This is a variation of preeclampsia that’s diagnosed by blood tests. It stands for the conditions you develop:

  • Hemolytic anemia
  • Elevated liver enzymes
  • Low platelets

Most women with HELLP have high blood pressure, and other symptoms include fatigue, severe headaches, nausea, vomiting, and swelling.

The only treatment is to deliver your baby. HELLP is very serious and requires care from a doctor.

Gestational Diabetes

Even if you don’t have diabetes before you get pregnant, you can develop gestational diabetes. It will go away after you have your baby, but during your pregnancy, you may be required to follow a special diet, exercise, or take insulin.

Environmental Risk

Certain substances can be harmful to your baby, raising the risk of birth defects and miscarriage. Chemicals to avoid include:

  • Cigarette smoke
  • Lead in water or paint
  • Some cleaners
  • Pesticides
  • Mercury in tuna and other fish
  • Cat litter boxes

Talk to your doctor about how to avoid these chemicals and what to do if you come in contact with any of them.

Chicken Pox

While most women are immune if they’ve had chicken pox or the vaccine before, it can be dangerous if you catch it while pregnant. Tell your doctor right away if you come in contact with someone who has it or if you believe you have it.


You can pass HIV/AIDS to your baby during pregnancy, labor, or delivery if you already have it. You can take meds to protect your baby during your pregnancy, just talk to your doctor about it.

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)

If you have an STI, it can cause your baby to be born blind, deaf, or even stillborn. Medication can usually help protect your baby during pregnancy and delivery. Tell your doctor right away if you have an STI or develop one while you are pregnant.

Emotional Wellness Month

Emotional Wellness Month

October is Emotional Wellness Month. Emotional wellness means you know how to handle and express your feelings in a positive way and to drive positive change in your life.

Having emotional intelligence is an important part of putting your emotional wellness to work in your professional life. Learn to make the most of it.

Emotional Intelligence at Work


Expressing your feelings with respect through open communication, something you develop through emotional wellness, can help you build good relationships.

Communicating Your Way to Good Relationships


You would be surprised to know how much sleep can affect your day-to-day life, your feelings, and your emotional wellness. Make sure you get enough.

Sleep and Emotional Wellness


Confidence, knowing yourself and your mental health, and talking to others, including professionals, can help you build emotional wellness.

Support for Your Mental Health


Handling stress in a healthy way is a key part of your emotional wellness. We can help.

Beating Stress


Wondering how you rank in emotional wellness? Here are 7 signs you’re emotionally healthy.

Becoming Emotionally Healthy

Signs of Dyslexia

Dyslexia Awareness Month

October is also Dyslexia Awareness Month. Dyslexia is a neurological condition, which causes a difference in how people understand and process language.

Dyslexia Awareness Month


Since there’s no cure, a dyslexia diagnosis can feel overwhelming. While it makes reading more difficult, almost all people with dyslexia can learn to read.

Learning to Read


Dyslexia does not affect intelligence. Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, Stephen Spielberg, and many more have excelled despite having dyslexia.

Intelligence and Dyslexia


Dyslexia runs in families, so if you have dyslexia, you should keep an eye out for signs of it in your children.

Dyslexia and Your Kids


Your child might have dyslexia if they have trouble learning their sounds or letters, or to speak, read, and write.

Getting special instruction that breaks down language structure can help your student cope with dyslexia.

Help Learning with Dyslexia


You have a right to get help or special considerations when taking certain tests, applying for colleges, or applying for jobs.

Your Rights with Dyslexia

National Protect Your Hearing Month

National Protect Your Hearing Month

It’s National Protect Your Hearing Month and National Audiology Awareness Month, and it’s the best time to start thinking about protecting your hearing, regardless of your age.

Get the facts about your risk for hearing loss.

Myth vs. Fact on Hearing Loss


At least 10 million adults under age 70 have hearing loss from noise in one or both ears. You might not realize how easy it is to damage your hearing.

Noise Ratings


Kids and teens are especially at risk to damage their hearing without realizing it. Help them learn more.

Protect Teens' Ears


Do you need a hearing test? This quick quiz can help you find out.

Getting a Hearing Test


Know the signs and symptoms of noise-induced hearing loss and help prevent it.

Signs of Damage


Move away from loud noises that you can’t lower. Distance improves the likelihood your ears will be protected.

Move Away From Loud Noises


Lower your volume and wear hearing protectors, like earplugs, when you’re doing loud activities, like mowing.

Protect Your Hearing

Safe Travel Each Step of the Way

Safe Travel

Summer travel season is upon us, and preparing for safe travel is important, especially if you have an illness.

First, learn about your destination to check for any local health notices or immunizations you might need first.

Safety Wherever You Go


Think about your health before you book. From illness and surgery recovery to pregnancy, check if you’re safe to fly.

Fly Smart


See a doctor before you take off to make sure you’re up-to-date on key shots or healthy enough for planned activities.

Vaccines for Travel


Pack carefully to protect yourself, especially if you need medicines or care while you’re traveling.

Pack for Your Health


Be prepared for the signs and what to do if you know you’re at higher risk of health issues while traveling.

Healthy and Prepared on Vacation


Make sure your family or friends (and government entities depending on where you’re traveling) know your travel plan.

Share Your Travel Plan


Know you’re covered with a copayment or coinsurance for ER and urgent care if you get sick while traveling.

And check out Assist America, which helps connect you to services when you get sick while traveling.