Any advice on dealing with fatigue/depression and the workplace following Crohn's diagnosis?

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Hi everyone,

Over the last year and since my diagnosis last August I've struggled TERRIBLY with fatigue. I'm due to start b12 injections next week so hoping this will improve, but I'm struggling badly at work. Has anyone had any experience of this? I think because you look well on the outside its so hard to demonstrate how terrible you're feeling.

I've also been on anti-depressants since my diagnosis as I'm struggling to cope with stress at work. I'm desperate to leave my job but don't have the money to retrain. Has anyone else felt like this?

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  • Posted

    Hi

    Unfortumately fatigue plagues us Chronies and I have VITB12 injections..they help but it doesnt stop this terrible feeling.  I just sleep often ..nothing more I can do. My consultant recognises this but sadly there isnt much they can do

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply! Its so frustrating isn't it! I feel at a loss as to know what to do with my life at the moment

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  • Posted

    Hi, Having suffered from crohns for 53yrs now I know exactly what you are going through. Your right in that people do not appreciate how you are feeling including GP's My wife often tells me that I look really well when in actual fact I am feeling rotten. It would be much easier if we had a GP who also suffered from crohns. I have been on B12 injections for around 18 yrs now and while some people say that cannot wait to have their three monthly injections to give them that lift I have to say that it never seems to do anything for me, lets hope that you get some relief from it.  Things are a little bit better now than when I was first diagnosed 53 yrs ago the only option then was surgery but there are a few more medications available that helps reduce the need for this. it is just a matter of finding the one that suits you.  I am at the moment going through what I think is a flare up and are due to haver my first colonoscopy to establish whether it is a flare up. I have never been on any of these new medications, I take cholestyramine for malabsorption and some vitamin  D tablets.  Like your self I was put on anti depressants some years ago when I reach an all time low .I was reluctant at first but was later grateful that I did as it helped a lot. I was on citalopram.  Unfortunately they do not have anything to relieve the fatigue all I do is sleep. I do hope that you soon start feeling better it is difficult trying to hold down a job while feeling like this. You take care.

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    • Posted

      Thanks so much for your response, it is comforting to know I'm not alone in feeling like this. I guess I just have to wait for the anti depressants to do something (doubled my dose a month ago) and try to pull myself up

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  • Posted

    Hi, sorry you having hard time. I have crohn's for 9 years. I use to do voluntary work before, I got ill. Now, I just attend Maths group and Women's Group. I have mild crohn's flare up. I get depression and on ant-dresants too. Hope the b12 injections help you with fatigue.

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  • Posted

    Hello Penelope, 

    I feel ur pain/frustration. I think the key is to take each day as it is by keeping +ve. There will eventually be light at the end of the tunnel. 

    I have been diagnosed for about 10 years. I am a nurse and on its own the job is hard and stressful & Chrons doesn't make it any easier. I constantly have work related issues and employers are hopeless. 

    Have u consulted ur work occupational health department and HR, alternatively reduce your hours, because I personally think going to work helps me maintain some sanity and help my motivation. 

    Chin up, it will definitely get better. 

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    • Posted

      THank you so much for your reply I’m glad I’m not alone in feeling like this and people feel there is a light at the end so f the tunnel!

      Work have been quite good they’re letting me work a day at home since Xmas til the end of the month. I find it harder with some colleagues than others some just do not understand that I can’t cope with the workload or stress level that I used to 

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  • Posted

    Hello Penelope8,

    Yes,  I have felt that way lots of times and I still do.  I am not on any meds as of yet but at one point and time I was taking an anti-depressant.  It did help with the depression but for years I just coped with the depression.  I stayed busy.  I still felt terrible at times, and now I have enrolled in college and I got away from a lot of stress I feel little better at times.  Hope you find some way to cope.  Crohn's can be confusing at time.  You fill better sometimes and then you don't.  It is like a roller coaster ride up and down.  I have been dealing with the disease for over 10 years and my symptoms are always here today gone tomorrow.  I have meet 2 people with the disease and I love to communicate with others that has the same issues.  Thanks for sharing and I hope things get better for you.

    Jay 7772 

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    • Posted

      Hi joe

      Thank you so much for coming back to me. I’m glad you were able to find a way to cope with your depression. I just feel so trapped in my job at the moment and have no idea what to do

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    • Posted

      Hello penelope8817,

      I know how you feel.  I was the same way tired of work, tired of being in pain, tried of the bleeding, tired of running to the bathroom, and tired of just of everything.  In and out of the hospital It can be exhausting.  Find a hobby and put it to good use maybe that will help.  Quitting your job will bring much pleasure to your mental state and I would probably take a very large amount of stress off of you.  But it will not help you financial state.  Find a way to do something that you like, something that bring joy to your heart.  Your mind may just be tired of the 9 to 5 everyday.  I was afraid to take a chance on changing things but I did.  When opportunity presented it's self I ran for it as fast as I could and took it.   

      We as human beings we get so caught up in trying to survive that we forget about what it is we want out of this life.  Only to find ourselves years later sick, and hating our jobs.  I am always looking for change the reason being is because I do not want to get comfortable with something and then finding myself where I was before unhappy, stressed, and sick.  Of course, I do not just jump in and out of things I wait until the time is right.  I want to keep myself happy.  Having crohn's you have to keep your mind in a positive and joyful state.  For some people that deals with the disease stress can bet the main trigger.  I say focus on doing things that make you happy.  I have to remind myself everyday to be happy stay away from the things that brings you down.  That can be a start.  Thanks for sharing

      Joe7772

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  • Posted

    I don’t work but I am a single mum of a toddler & a teen and that’s pretty hard work. I’m suffering awfully from fatigue right now. I was severely anemic so have had iron infusion & im now on folate as well. I’m also suffering with depression & in the midst of changing anti depressants as the ones I’m on aren’t helping & am needing diazepam a lot. It’s a catch 22 this illness, you feel so rough & tired with it which makes you feel down & some in cos of it so vicious circle. You’re not alone feeling this way & if you have to leave work maybe look into government help financially? 

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    • Posted

      Yeah your absolutely right it’s a vicious circle! Yes I could have a look into that. Depression and crohns is such a difficult combination at work, both invisible illnesses
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