I have been working with a lot of individuals who deal with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) to know that many of them have gone to psychologists or psychiatrists first to diagnose the illness. Some of the symptoms related to it, after all, are known indicators of anxiety disorder. E.g., heart palpitations and dizziness. Despite that, there are more studies now that show that POTS is a real autoimmune disease, not a sign of a mental condition.
Being positive all of the time when dealing with illness is unrealistic. In fact, being excessively upbeat is sometimes linked with the denial of illness. — Tamara McClintock Greenberg Psy.D.
One investigation that has been published in Clinical Autonomic Research in 2014, for instance, has revealed that the visceral and somatic reflexes of people with POTS are no different from regular people. What it entails is that the palpitations that the patients may experience are not due to psychological reasons. The sensations have “organic origins,” as they say so that they may come from the central nervous system or internal organs. Nevertheless, some individuals merely deal with lightheadedness when they are standing up – and no palpitations at all – that’s why it remains difficult to make conclusions on the matter.
Another symptom that’s common among patients with POTS is brain fog. According to some experts from Vanderbilt University’s School of Medicine in 2015, many folks complain about mental clouding. In other words, they have trouble remembering, reasoning, recognizing, and sometimes even concentrating on things. Such a sign can be a source of stress, especially if a lot of people are counting on you to do your tasks well. Upon comparing the cognitive performances of healthy and non-healthy subjects, the researchers have gathered that there’s an obvious issue with their ability to process or pay attention to circumstances.
Now, the reality is that there is no known cure for any autoimmune disorder, including POTS. But if you can at least counter the mental-clouding symptom, that may make life a dozen times better for you. Here are some incredibly practical tips on how to improve your cognitive function now.
Talk To A Kid
I am pretty confident that I have not seen this technique mentioned in any other article yet. Nevertheless, it does not mean to say that it cannot help you mend your mind. Even though there are already kids who know more about life than they should, most of them still do not have an accurate perception of how the world moves. They tend to ask brilliant questions as well that can faze even a highly dignified person. Thus, if these children always throw out-of-this-world items at you, it may force you to think harder than ever and (hopefully) recalibrate your brain.
Understanding the patterns and determinants of your well-being is key to living well with chronic pain. — Deborah Barrett Ph.D., LCSW
Sing Your Heart Out
If there is one thing that I like the most in life, it’s the peace that I get when I am alone. However, even if I am not a fan of noise, I still can’t seem to concentrate on various tasks at hand when I am not singing or listening to music. There is a significant change in my recollection capability when I am singing because I get to memorize one whole science textbook, word for word when I am doing it. My friends and family always tell me that I am weird because of that. To prove that it is acceptable to sing my heart out to remember stuff, I have shown them a study related to it. It states that learning new songs increases the level of acetylcholine in the body, which lets us build new memories and retain the old ones. Try doing it every day and wow everyone around you when they see that you are not just an awesome person but an awesomely smart person as well.
Watch TV Shows More Often
Many adults forbid their kids – and themselves – to stay in front of the TV for more than an hour for fear of getting too much radiation from it. Although it is true if you merely keep a one-meter distance from the television, there are recent researches that confirm that children who watch TV all day long leave behind the others who are not allowed to attend the television in terms of academic standing. In my opinion, almost everything that you have to learn about life – from general to scientific knowledge – can be learned from the different channels that you can find there. So, if you are still cringing with the thought of sitting to watch TV, try it before you dismiss the idea.
Yes, I live with a disease that is not going away. It has changed and continues to change me profoundly. — Katie Willard Virant MSW, JD, LCSW
Kindly be reminded that the tips mentioned above are supposed to boost your cognitive function alone, not cure postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS). The latter is something that you should receive treatment for from a specialist. What we merely provide here are practical ways to counter somehow the brain fog that you may experience due to the condition.