CBT for Chronic Fatigue/M.E.
If you click on the questionnaire you can identify CFS/M.E. symptoms. If you suffer from at least four of the starred symptoms for six months or more you should consider a professional medical assessment.
These are some of the symptoms of CFS/ME: –
- chronic exhaustion
- poor sleep
- poor concentration & short term memory
- joint pain
- light sensitivity
- IBS (irritable bowel syndrome)
These Symptoms can either fluctuate in intensity or even disappear for periods of time, but then return CFS/ME greatly limits clients ability to function optimally in their professional, home, school and family lives.
CBT and Chronic Fatigue/M.E
Success in working with CFS/M.E. clients has been in examining the Type A/B qualities in the client before the onset of the illness. Psychological type seems to play a large part maintaining clinical symptoms of anxiety and depression.
A complete programme has been developed looking at the self concept the person had before the illness, and using a battery of coping techniques, to challenge negative thoughts, and self-defeating patterns. These include relaxation techniques, progressive muscle relaxation, breathing and visualisation.
A course of fifteen CBT sessions is usually recommended as weekly or fortnightly intervals. Clients are asked to use a voice activated dictaphone to record sessions. This is used reflectively and reinforces the work done in the session. Homework is given in the form of reading (bibliotherapy), daily thought records to monitor your negative automatic thoughts and a daily activity schedule to monitor mood, as well as behaviour experiments to test strongly held illness beliefs.
Depending on the level of severity of the illness your week to week progress is monitored at the beginning of each session. CBT greatly helps clients to readjust to their present condition.
CBT for Chronic Fatigue/M.E.
In the first stage of treatment a client is assessed using a battery of CBT diagnostic tests to determine depression and anxiety levels and personality type. Clients collaboratively draw up a problem list of the areas in their life they want to develop or improve as a result of the treatment. This forms the blueprint for the therapy.
Clients are given a care plan looking at their emotional, physical, thinking and behavioural components and shown how CBT works in relation to CFS/ME.
CBT is recommended as the preferred form of counselling for CFS/M.E. It works by dealing with problems in the ‘here and now’ rather than an emphasis on early life in the causation of problems, challenging the way we interpret experiences, thoughts, images, and attitudes in daily life.
Virtual Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Convenient, private and secure
Online Therapy is available to anyone, anywhere in the world at home or in the office using a tablet, mobile phone or laptop / computer and a good internet connection.
This service would appeal to client's for a variety of reasons.
- Clients location would make it difficult / impossible to access Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy.
- Clients time-pressure, work deadlines, and work-based travel make it difficult to commit for the normal counselling time-scale.
- Clients family commitments make it easier to have treatment on-line at home.
- Clients prefer an initial face to face assessment, and then combine both treatment modalities.