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Along with the fatigue of CFS/ME, people often experience symptoms such as muscle or joint pain, sore throat, sleep problems and more notably, headaches.

Headache: A Common Symptom

Headaches are one of the most frequently reported symptoms associated with CFS/ME. They are different in type and severity for everyone. Some people may experience mild, dull sensations, while others may suffer from severe, incapacitating headaches. The type of headache associated with CFS is often described as a new type or a new pattern of headaches.

Features of Headaches in CFS

Headaches experienced by CFS patients can vary greatly, however, there are some common features:

  • They are often of a new onset—meaning a new type of headache that has begun in the middle to late periods of life.
  • They can be frequency characteristic—they frequently occur or last for long periods.
  • They often have migrainous features—severe throbbing pain that typically occurs on one side of the head, and are often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light, sound, or smell.

Management of Headaches in CFS

Effective management of headaches in CFS usually requires a holistic, multi-faceted approach:

  • Medication: Over-the-counter painkillers can sometimes ease the pain. For more severe headaches, stronger prescription medications may be needed.
  • Rest and relaxation techniques: Techniques like yoga, meditation, and gentle exercise may help to reduce the intensity and frequency of headaches.
  • Nutrition: Such as correcting poor diet choices or supplements.
  • Physical therapy: Some people with CFS find that physical therapy, involving guided exercises and stretching, relieves their symptoms.

It is important for individuals suffering from chronic headaches associated with CFS/ME to seek medical advice as the condition may require medical intervention and personalized treatment.

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