Fatigue may be a term won’t to describe an overall feeling of tiredness or lack of energy. It isn’t an equivalent as simply feeling drowsy or sleepy. When you’re fatigued, you've got no motivation and no energy. Being sleepy could also be a symbol of fatigue, but it’s not an equivalent thing.
Fatigue may be a common symptom of the many medical conditions that home in severity from mild to serious. It’s also a natural results of some lifestyle choices, like lack of exercise or poor diet.
If your fatigue doesn’t resolve with proper rest and nutrition, otherwise you suspect it’s caused by an underlying physical or psychological state condition, see your doctor. They can help diagnose the cause of your fatigue and work with you to treat it.
What causes fatigue?
There are many potential causes of fatigue. They can be divided into three general categories:
Ø lifestyle factors
Ø physical health conditions
Ø mental health issues
If you’re experiencing fatigue, your activities and other lifestyle choices could also be the basis cause. For example, fatigue can result from:
Ø physical exertion
Ø lack of physical activity
Ø lack of sleep
Ø being overweight or obese
Ø periods of emotional stress
Ø taking certain medications, such as antidepressants or sedatives
Ø using alcohol on a regular basis
Ø using illicit drugs, such as cocaine
Ø consuming too much caffeine
Ø not eating a nutritious diet
Physical health conditions
Many medical conditions can also cause fatigue. Examples include:
Ø chronic fatigue syndrome
Ø infections, such as cold and flu
Ø Addison’s disease, a disorder that can affect your hormone levels
Ø hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid
Ø hyperthyroidism, or overactive thyroid
Ø sleep disorders, such as insomnia
Ø eating disorders, such as anorexia
Ø autoimmune disorders
Ø congestive heart failure
Ø kidney disease
Ø liver disease
Ø chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
Mental health issues
Mental health conditions can also lead to fatigue. For example, fatigue may be a common symptom of hysteria , depression, and seasonal major affective disorder.
When is it time to see your doctor?
You should make an appointment with your doctor if you’re feeling fatigued and you:
Ø can’t think of anything that might account for your fatigue
Ø have a higher-than-normal body temperature
Ø have experienced unexplained weight loss
Ø feel very sensitive to colder temperatures
Ø regularly have trouble falling or staying asleep
Ø believe you may be depressed
If you’ve made efforts to address the most common lifestyle causes, such as lack of rest, poor eating habits, and stress, without success, and your fatigue has continued for two weeks or more, make an appointment with your doctor.
In some cases, your fatigue might be caused by a serious medical condition. Go to the hospital immediately if you experience fatigue along with any of the following symptoms:
Ø rectal bleeding
Ø vomiting blood
Ø severe headache
Ø pain in your chest area
Ø feelings of faintness
Ø irregular heartbeat
Ø shortness of breath
Ø severe pain in your abdominal, back, or pelvic region
Ø thoughts of suicide or self-harm
Ø thoughts of harming another person
How will your doctor treat fatigue?
Your doctor’s recommended treatment plan will depend upon what’s causing your fatigue. To make a diagnosis, they will likely ask you questions about:
Ø other symptoms that you’ve been experiencing
Ø other medical conditions that you have
Ø your lifestyle and sources of stress
Ø medications that you’re taking
If your doctor suspects you have an underlying medical condition that’s causing your fatigue, they may order some medical tests. For example, they'll order blood or urine tests.
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