Fatigue is something most of us suffer from time to time. And it can be even worse for someone with medical issues, especially those undergoing chemotherapy. This type of fatigue can be hard to combat but new research is showing one way to overcome fatigue is by thinking your way out of it.
A new study, just published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology looked at 200 breast cancer patients undergoing a six week radiotherapy course. This type of therapy is oftentimes accompanied by an increase in fatigue symptoms which can be difficult to control. In this study patients were either given cognitive-behavioral therapy plus hypnosis, CBTH, or attention control by means of regular psychiatrist meetings. Researchers found that four weeks after the study patients who underwent CBTH reported much less fatigue. And this reduction in fatigue lasted at least up to the six month follow-up. They believe that combining cognitive-behavioral therapy with hypnosis both changes how people think about and react to fatigue and actually reduces fatigue symptoms themselves. This means the patients in this study not only reduced the fatigue they suffered from because of their radiation treatment but also were less bothered by any fatigue that remained.
Although this study was done on these specific patients experts believe that the same CBTH program could help any of us during those time periods when fatigue seems to be taking hold and is difficult to get rid of.