Covid-19 has impacted and devastated the world for over a year now. It has taken many lives and left many families without income and one after effects of recovery (that so many including myself didn’t even know about) is brain fog as well as POTS.
Many people recover from Covid-19 and get back to their normal routine and life as best as possible. While some have some more lingering effects in place such as chronic fatigue, dizziness, brain fog and increased heart rate at random times.
Experts have started calling these survivors ‘long haulers’. Some medical professionals have linked the above mentioned symptoms being experienced to postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome or POTS for short. A blood circulation disorder.
Although a vast majority of the symptoms might just be coincidal or simply put a part of the recovery period from Covid-19, some might actually have developed this blood circulation disorder during Covid-19 and be completely unaware of it.
Firstly, let me discuss Brain fog. Cognitive dysfunction (or brain fog) are the most common symptoms reported by COVID long haulers 6 months after contracting the coronavirus. “Brain fog” isn’t a medical condition. It’s a term used for certain symptoms that can affect your ability to think. You may feel confused or disorganized or find it hard to focus or put your thoughts into words.
After my recovery, I noticed that I would stumble over words, forget basic tasks or even name and just have a fuzzy mind at random times. My cognitive abilities were affected however not in such an extreme way where I thought anything about it. I mean, I was quite ill for three weeks. It only makes sense that the recovery process would take a little bit longer.
As time went on, I noticed more and more things happening and turned to google, with a bunch of random keywords to find out what is going on with me and so I discovered the term Brain fog. It finally made sense. After slightly going into panic mode thinking its all in my head and that I am imagining things, I then learned that there are many individuals who have been experience the same ‘fuzzyness’ and ‘disorientation’ like me.
Since Covid-19 has only been around for such a short period ( in the broader perspective that is ) researchers are still studying the long term effects on the human body and some signs have shown that many individuals have the classic signs of POTS. Now many people will not even notice that they have the signs as our current worldly environment is already stressful. Many individuals are already fatigued and experience a lot of stress on their overall health and mental health.
Tae Chung, M.D., assistant professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation and neurology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and director of the Johns Hopkins POTS Program, says POTS is related to autonomic nerve dysfunction. He explains that the autonomic nervous system is responsible for involuntary control of many of our body functions, such as sweating, pupil movement, bowel movement and blood flow. Many POTS symptoms are thought to be related to inadequate control of blood flow, causing brain fog and dizziness. Chung suspects that COVID-19 may be associated with chronic inflammation in the autonomic nervous system, causing POTS.
Since the pandemic began at the end of 2019, physicians are only just now beginning to see patients with post-COVID POTS this is because patients can have symptoms up to six months after recovering from Covid-19 and many times will go undiagnosed still.
Most important thing here is to always discuss any of the symptoms with your doctor.
The most common effects are fatigue, post-exercise malaise and brain fog, but also neurological sensations, headaches, memory issues, muscle aches, insomnia, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, dizziness, balance issues and speech issues. Less common symptoms included facial paralysis, new allergies, seizures, impaired vision and hearing and a prolonged loss of taste and smell.
So take care of yourself out there, Just because you have ‘recovered’ from Covid-19 does not mean you are out of the ‘bad’ zone.
Thank you for reading… #TheSomethingGuy #SouthAfrica #Blog