Modern society, especially in our difficult time, the so-called neurasthenia prevails. According to Wikipedia, neurasthenia is a mental disorder from the group of neuroses, manifested in increased irritability, fatigue, loss of ability for long-term mental and physical stress. Think about it. These symptoms are present in every second resident of Ukraine, not to mention the realities of war. Neurasthenia usually occurs when a combination of trauma and overly intense work and physiological deprivation (chronic sleep deprivation, lack of rest, etc.) occurs. Neurasthenia can be promoted by weakening the body of infection and intoxication (alcohol, smoking), endocrine disorders, malnutrition, etc. Neurasthenia can be considered a nervous exhaustion. If we talk about nosology (chronic diagnosis), then neurasthenia can be confused with a depressive state, chronic laziness, with chronic fatigue syndrome or with many symptoms of somatic diseases. But if you treat a person for depression, stomach ulcers, irritability, fatigue and other symptoms, there will be no improvement, since the very reason for neurasthenia – physical or psycho-emotional overwork – is not eliminated. Moreover, a normal physical exertion will never give depression – moreover, it can cure depression. But hypodynamia (lack of physical activity), long work at the computer, lack of fresh air can quickly cause neurasthenia. Especially harmful mental activity associated with the need for a long time to focus on something, to wait for something, to perform a uniform, boring work that requires attention – the work of the operator, proofreader, programmer …
In addition, stresses, the presence of an irritant at work and at home, irregular working hours, lack of sleep play a very important role. All these factors are present in the lives of our associates almost everywhere.
Toxic health, infections, smoking, alcohol, and a lack of vitamins undermine even more.
Especially harmful is the state of waiting for some kind of trouble, wariness – such a mood very often causes neurasthenia.
Insidious neurasthenia. Neurasthenia always begins imperceptibly, like simple fatigue or malaise, and it seems that with such nonsense you should not see a doctor – it will pass by itself. However, the essence of neurasthenia is such that it selects an opportunity for self-healing, because the only correct method of treating neurasthenia is rest, and it is impossible in the state of neurasthenic — first of all, sleep is disturbed, restlessness, irritability, anxiety appear. It turns out that the neurasthenic runs in a closed circle – lack of rest and relaxation causes neurasthenia, neurasthenia causes inability to rest and relax. And it turns out that a person is being treated for depression, headaches, autonomic dystonia, abdominal pain, stomach ulcers, and neurasthenia is the cause of illness. – does not pass.
What are some symptoms of nervous exhaustion?
Signs of neurasthenia:
- Irritability – a person becomes hot-tempered, starts up with a half-turn. Literally everything annoys – even close people, music that you liked before, your own habits … This irritation flashes at once – and completely embraces the person …
- Impatience – any ability to wait, to restrain oneself is lost … For example, even knowing that the bus is arriving in 5 minutes, the patient with neurasthenia will not wait for it, and they will walk.
- Fatigue – despite the violent manifestations of feelings, the patient with neurasthenia quickly gets tired. In general, fatigue constantly pursues a neurasthenic – in the morning, waking up, he already feels tired.
- Weakness – it seems that the arms and legs in any movement requires effort.
- Headaches – they are very frequent with neurasthenia, occur at the slightest exertion, have a squeezing character. It feels like a helmet squeezes the head, or pain behind the eyes and in the temples.
- Fog in the head – everything is perceived as through the veil, the head as if filled with cotton, intellectual activity becomes unproductive. Often in the head from unpleasant thoughts that interrupt each other …
- Impossibility to concentrate – everything distracts. When you try to engage in intellectual activity, the patient quickly switches to something else: for example, she starts walking from room to room, looking for some items, and then making tea … For modern office workers, they tend to be distracted in such cases by communication in “ace”, “ skype ”, it makes no sense to spend time on social networks (“ VKontakte ”,“ classmates ”) …
- Increased sensitivity – even quiet sounds seem unpleasantly loud, light – bright … A banal melodramma can cause tears.
- Sleep disturbance – falling asleep is very difficult – despite the feeling of fatigue and the desire to fall asleep, unpleasant thoughts roam like cockroaches … Such sleepless torment can last for hours … The oncoming sleep is superficial, filled with disturbing, unpleasant dreams. Upon awakening, the person feels completely overwhelmed, tired.
- Anxiety, fears – the soul is tormented by various fears, doubts, anxiety at the slightest occasion.
- Low self-esteem – a person perceives himself as a loser, worthlessness, weak personality … Often he finds himself with a lot of bodily diseases and endlessly undergoes examination by general practitioners.
- Reduced sexual desire – men often have premature ejaculation, and later – impotence.
- Exacerbation of chronic diseases and the emergence of psychosomatic disorders – pain in the spine, a feeling of constriction in the chest, heaviness in the heart, tremor, psoriasis, allergies, conjunctivitis, herpes, acne, joint pain, pain in the eyes and visual disturbances, problems with teeth, nails, hair, drastic weight loss …
As you can see, the manifestations of neurasthenia, on the one hand, are serious, on the other – diverse and non-specific, which makes it possible to disguise itself as many other diseases. Depending on the degree of neurasthenia, there are three stages.
Stages of neurasthenia
The first stage is hypersthenic. A person becomes irritable, fussy, cannot sit for long in one place. He is aware of these changes, but he cannot do anything with himself. If he loses control of himself, he shouts. Often, holding back at work, coming home, begins to “unjustly” quarrel with loved ones. Difficult to concentrate. Unsuccessful attempts to collect themselves, reduced productivity of activity cause even more irritation. Sleeping is broken, a person lies awake for a long time in bed. There are headaches of pressing nature, pain in the spine, weakness, constant feeling of fatigue.
The second stage is “irritated weakness”. It irritates literally everything, the patient “flashes” very quickly, but it is not enough for a long time. Lost ability to concentrate, the patient almost can not do the work, constantly distracted. There are fears, anxiety increases. The patient is convinced that he is not capable of anything, he is a loser, life is wasted. Irritating to any sounds, bright light, smells. Annoying moving people, the crowd. Nothing brings pleasure. Sleep is disturbed: it is superficial, not giving rest. Headaches are constant.
Heart pain, shortness of breath, feeling of lack of air, abdominal pain, diarrhea and constipation, allergies, feeling of weakness and pain in the muscles, dizziness, sometimes throwing into sweat may appear …
The third stage is hypostenic. In this stage, fussiness and unproductive activity is reduced. The patient simply does not want to do anything. The mood is sad, complaints of multiple bodily ailments. Superficial sleep. Everything is annoying. Sometimes there is fear of the future, fear of death, tearfulness. The condition is very similar to depression.
Masks of neurasthenia
Suffering from neurasthenia, due to a special variety of complaints, they rarely turn to a psychiatrist or psychotherapist, often going to other specialists, at best to a neurologist, more often to a therapist, and even to a psychologist. It is clear that each expert sees first of all “his” complaints, therefore diagnoses are made extremely diverse.
A neurologist is the only non-mental specialist who can call neurasthenia a neurasthenia, and select the right medication. However, the cause of neurasthenia often lies in psychological problems, and here the neurologist is powerless – he is not trained in psychotherapy. In addition to the diagnosis of neurasthenia, neurologists often make a diagnosis of vascular dystonia, dyscirculatory disorders of the brain, and vascular insufficiency.
The therapist can make a “mythic” diagnosis of chronic fatigue syndrome, as well as find cardiovascular insufficiency, functional disorders of the digestive system, weak immunity, chronic gastritis, biliary dyskinesia, low hemoglobin, and dysbacteriosis in the patient. Recently it has become fashionable to find parasites and chronic infections such as mononucleosis and herpes. Yes, indeed, with neurasthenia, immunity decreases, hemoglobin, chronic diseases worsen – but these diseases are not the causes of neurasthenia – remove neurasthenia, and the body will restore itself!
The optometrist finds a spasm of accommodation (it is very common with neurasthenia, especially among computer workers).
Dermatologist finds atopic dermatitis, herpes, psoriasis.
An orthopedist, massage therapist, and a manual therapist find osteochondrosis, usually of the cervical region, and begin to treat it.
The psychologist sees depression, complexes, stress, and tells you about them. Most often this makes it worse – because with neurasthenia there is not enough mental energy to work on yourself!
Grandma finds the evil eye or damage, and “skillfully” rolls it out with an egg. Or whispers. Neurasthenia from this is neither warm nor cold.
The psychic and bioenergetic sees a big hole in the aura. Hole to be mending.
Indeed, with neurasthenia, all organs and systems of the body are affected, and each specialist is right when finding something of his own — but all this is a consequence of primary nervous exhaustion. Therefore, only a psychotherapist (psychiatrist) or a medical psychologist is able to treat the cause and effects of neurasthenia, seeing this disease entirely.
Treatment of neurasthenia
Mode. Treatment of neurasthenia begins with the correct choice of the day regimen, time for sleeping, working, walking. Working conditions are carefully studied, flaws are corrected. The mode involves a long pastime in the fresh air.
Non-drug normalization of sleep. The patient learns some techniques that help normalize sleep: relaxation techniques, special, individually designed rules that help normalize sleep — a sample of such rules is shown below:
- Get into bed only if you are very tired.
- Do not do anything else in the bed – do not read, do not eat, do not work on the laptop, do not watch TV.
- If you can not sleep, do not lie in bed – get up and do something!
- Get up every morning at the same time.
Relaxation. Developed special techniques to help you relax most effectively.
Physical exercise. One of the causes of neurasthenia is hypodynamia, so physical activity plays an important role in the treatment of neurasthenia. However, it must be strictly metered – after all, neurasthenia is a disease of exhaustion, and an incorrectly chosen load will worsen the situation. You should start with long walks in the fresh air, swimming gives good results, as you strengthen the body, you can move on to more active pursuits.
Diet. Properly developed diet with neurasthenia contains products that increase the body’s adaptive abilities, helping to quickly recover. Much attention is paid to the multiplicity and regularity of food intake.
Water treatments. With neurasthenia, swimming is useful, warm baths containing decoctions of some herbs are aromatic.
Hypnosis. Hypnosis promotes deep relaxation and sleep, which is so necessary for neurasthenia. It very effectively relieves overexcitement and nervous tension, relieves fear, anxiety, obsessive thoughts.
One hour of hypnosis can replace many hours of sleep. During hypnosis, it is possible to achieve a very deep relaxation, which is usually not possible with natural sleep, because it is superficial in neurasthenia. Hypnosis is able to activate all forces to cure the disease.
- Vasodilators – with neurasthenia there is a spasm of cerebral vessels, it is he who causes headaches. The lack of blood circulation results in oxygen starvation of brain cells, and, as a consequence, increased exhaustion. Vasodilator substances relieve headache and accelerate recovery.
- Substances that improve the metabolism of the brain – these substances, prepared from natural ingredients, contribute to the recovery of brain cells.
- Nootropics – substances that feed the brain cells. Since many of them have a psychostimulant effect, which during neurasthenia increases irritability and anxiety, these substances should be prescribed very carefully.
- Vitamins – they also have a psychostimulant effect, so strictly defined vitamins should be prescribed at different stages of treatment.
- Soothing substances – relieve anxiety, tension, deepen sleep, improve the quality of rest.
- Antidepressants are prescribed in the presence of depressive symptoms in the structure of neurasthenia.
Psychotherapy – it is usually aimed at addressing the situation that led to the disease. If a person constantly falls into a state of neurasthenia, it is required to analyze life positions, find errors in behavior and correct them.
Hypnotherapy is one of the methods of medical psychology, which allows creating metaphoric spaces and using them to restore the processes of sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. The techniques of “Time Line”, “Sub-person” and “Matryoshka” are also used to identify (children’s and not only) psychotrauma and remove the emotional charge from them (see details in “Hypnotherapy. Answers to your questions.” MEDVIN Y.A. – K .: LLC NPP Interservice, 2015 -90 p.).
In general, with proper treatment, neurasthenia quickly passes, and the person recovers completely – life begins to rejoice, and work and family are fun!
Detailed information about therapeutic hypnosis and hypnotherapy read here.
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Doctor of Science in Medical Psychology, Professor.