Whilst as yet there’s no cure for long Covid or post-viral Covid fatigue, there are a number of therapeutic approaches that have been found to be helpful in supporting those with chronic fatigue (CFS/ME), post-viral, auto-immune and chronic health conditions as well as also helping those struggling with the current lack of understanding of long Covid or post-viral Covid fatigue.
Long Covid, post-viral Covid can result in unremitting and intermittent fatigue and can often be associated with debilitating depression and anxiety, seriously affecting not only the lives of those who suffer but also their families and those around them. Whilst an understanding of the underlying causes and available treatments is now more common in healthcare professionals, support in managing the conditions is not always readily accessible, with many people being led to believe that they “simply have to learn to live with it.”
Therapies that might support you whilst enduring Long Covid or Post-viral Covid fatigue
Mindfulness and Compassion-based therapy for Long Covid
There is a long, well-documented history – supported by clinical research – of Mindfulness and Compassion-Based approaches benefitting those who struggle with conditions for which medicine has not identified a physical cause and which include low and erratic energy levels.
Those affected are offered simple self-empowering tools and accessible, short practices which support them in self-regulation and in pacing themselves more effectively. Over time, and with steady application, there can be a general increase in overall energy and of reducing the incidence of oscillating between ‘boom’ and ‘bust’, by moderating the degree of such extremes.
Clinical trials relating to long Covid are in the early stages. However, there is an increasingly persuasive body of reported experience that suggests that tried and tested approaches to treating those with unremitting and intermittent fatigue may well be similarly effective for those with long Covid and post-Covid fatigue.
Somatic Experiencing for the treatment of Long Covid and post-Covid fatigue
Somatic experiencing is a form of therapy that aims to help people regulate their physiological arousal in the face of stress or trauma. It is based on the idea that the body stores memories of past events and that these ‘memories’ can be released through awareness and gentle physical movement.
There is some evidence to suggest that somatic experiencing may be helpful for people who are experiencing long-term symptoms following COVID-19, also known as “long COVID” or post-viral fatigue. These symptoms can include fatigue, difficulty with concentration and memory, sleep problems, and mood changes.
Somatic experiencing involves working with a therapist to gradually and gently bring awareness to physical sensations in the body and to learn how to regulate these sensations.
This can help people to process and release any unresolved stress or trauma that may be contributing to their symptoms. It may also help to improve overall regulation of the nervous system, which can have a positive impact on physical and emotional well-being.
CBT for the treatment of your negative emotional and thought responses whilst managing Long Covid or post-viral Covid fatigue
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) can help individuals with Long Covid and post-viral fatigue by addressing negative thoughts and behaviours that may be contributing to their ongoing symptoms and difficulties.
CBT techniques can be used to identify and challenge unhelpful beliefs and thoughts about the illness, and to develop coping strategies for managing symptoms and increasing resilience. This may include learning to pace oneself and prioritise activities, finding ways to manage stress and anxiety, and setting and working towards achievable goals.
CBT can also be helpful in addressing the challenges of living with an ongoing illness, such as managing changes in work or social life, and finding ways to maintain a sense of purpose and meaning.
By addressing these issues, CBT can help individuals with Long Covid and post-viral fatigue to better manage their symptoms and improve their overall quality of life.
Cranial Sacral Therapy for the treatment of Post-viral and Long Covid fatigue
Cranial sacral osteopathy therapy is a gentle, hands-on treatment that focuses on the craniosacral system, which includes the bones of the skull, spine, and pelvis as well as the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord. This therapy can help to alleviate pain and discomfort, improve mobility and flexibility, and promote relaxation and overall well-being.
In the case of Long Covid and post-viral fatigue, cranial sacral osteopathy therapy may be able to help by:
Reducing inflammation: The gentle techniques used in cranial sacral osteopathy can help to reduce inflammation in the body, which may be contributing to the symptoms of Long Covid and post-viral fatigue.
Improving circulation: Cranial sacral osteopathy can help to improve circulation, which can help to improve the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to cells and tissues in the body. This can help to improve overall health and well-being, as well as help to reduce fatigue and other symptoms.
Alleviating pain: Cranial sacral osteopathy can help to alleviate pain and discomfort in the body, which may be helpful for individuals experiencing pain or discomfort as a result of Long Covid or post-viral fatigue.
Promoting relaxation: Cranial sacral osteopathy can help to promote relaxation, which may be helpful for individuals experiencing stress or anxiety as a result of Long Covid or post-viral fatigue.
Overall, cranial sacral osteopathy may be able to help individuals with Long Covid and post-viral fatigue by reducing inflammation, improving circulation, alleviating pain, and promoting relaxation, which can help to improve overall health and well-being.
Which therapy is right for the treatment of Post-viral & Long Covid fatigue?
It’s important to note that not every therapy is the right therapy for every individual managing long COVID and post-viral fatigue. It’s always a good idea to talk to different therapists if you are experiencing long-term symptoms following COVID-19 and are seeking treatment options. They can help you determine the best course of action for your specific needs.
Take the first step towards taking charge of your own recovery from Long Covid or Post-viral Covid fatigue
To find a therapist who works with one of the above forms of therapy please take a look at the London Therapists page where you will find the profiles of all of the therapists.
© Brian Cotsen