Brain fog is often used to describe an unclear mind full of random thoughts. Interestingly it is not a medical condition but most doctors acknowledge it as an inability or disorganization to think, process, or focus on anything. This unclarity of mind has now been added to the list of long Covid symptoms, studied and confirmed by a new study.
According to this study, the long hauls of Covid also include a feeling of helplessness where the brain thinks that it is unable to put the thoughts into words. The long Covid symptoms manifest during the recovery period and brain fog is much more common if the patient has been infected many months ago.
Long Covid is a phase where the symptoms still show up making everyday life miserable for a patient even after his complete recovery from the infection. Based on recent evidence it is clear that these symptoms can be both physical and mental, explaining how brain fog may be a problem for these covid survivors.
This study was funded by the U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. The complete study findings are now published in the journal Fatigue: Biomedicine, Health & Behavior.
This brain fog may appear as an inability to solve problems, forgetting things such as where to go, what to do, and similar incidents. Leonard Jason from the DePaul University in Chicago is the lead author of this study as well as a psychologist with a keen interest in human behavior.
These long hauler complaints are typically common in patients of myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). For this study, these complaints from ME/CFS patients were compared with the Covid patients, hoping to find out the main primary behind it. In ME/CFS, this reason is mainly the Epstein-Barr virus which can’t be true for Covid patients, yet there has to be something to trigger it.
The research team identified Long Covid symptoms as serious health problems that would affect the quality of life, making routine things difficult especially for older adults. Even months after getting infected these symptoms never leave the body and there has to be a possible explanation for that, they say.
For this study, nearly 278 patients with long covid symptoms were identified and placed in a group for investigation. All of these patients were asked about what they feel with a gap of six months. On the other side, they collected data from the 500 ME/CFS patients asking them about their long-lasting symptoms that could potentially be common with Covid patients.
In the six-month period of this study, the long covid symptoms went worse showing up issues like inability to form words, focus on something, and an absentminded state. But the intensity of these symptoms was much less than the ME/CFS patients.
Other long-haul covid symptoms identified by this study include sleeping difficulties, low immunity, gastric distress, and pain. The strange thing is that these physical problems seemed to heal with time whereas the psychological symptoms worsened.
The challenges for both the Covid group and the MC/CFS group were more or less the same, but their family or health service provider didn’t seem to understand them, making it more difficult for them to manage these symptoms.