Fatigue is a common health complaint. Around 20% of Americans experience excessive fatigue that is enough to interfere with their normal life. Fatigue, also known as weariness, tiredness, lethargy, exhaustion is generally defined as a feeling of lack of energy and motivation. It is not the same as drowsiness, but the desire to sleep may accompany fatigue.
Fatigue is a symptom, rather than a specific disease or disorder. People who are fatigued feel tired all the time in both body and mind. It is thought that between three and 10 percent of patients visit their doctors because of fatigue. A person suffering from fatigue has slowed reflexes and reduced function in daily life. Excessive fatigue is also a known risk factor in workplace and car accidents.
Fatigue can trigger from a variety of causes such as undiagnosed medical conditions, unhealthy lifestyle choices, workplace issues, emotional concerns and stress. It can also be caused by a number of factors working in combination.
Many diseases and disorders can trigger fatigue, including flu, anemia, sleep disorders, tuberculosis, hepatitis, chronic pain, heart and lung problems. Malnutrition, obesity and vitamin deficiency can also rouse fatigue.
Excessive workload, the lack and too much of exercise can also make a person worn out and experience fatigue. Common lifestyle choices such as too much sleep, alcohol, drugs, sleep disturbances, and poor diet are also factors that influence the development of fatigue. Individual circumstances such as events that impact a person can also cause fatigue. These may include personal illness or injury, illnesses or injuries in the family, unhealthy personal relationships, too many commitments or financial problems.
The ultimate decrease in blood pressure also means a decrease in the amount of work the heart is doing, which can lead to a feeling of fatigue. Sometimes, the drug works not only on the heart, but also on the central nervous system. Muscle relaxants work to decrease the contraction of muscles. This relaxation can lead to total body relaxation, which may cause an individual to feel fatigued.
To battle fatigue, take some of the pressure out of the day. Take a midday stroll or get up 15 minutes earlier to give yourself more time to start your day. Whether you walk, garden or swim, once you get moving, you’ll likely notice you have more stamina. Try to include at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity. While 30 minutes is the minimum recommendation, you may need up to an hour of moderate activity daily to maintain fitness and a healthy weight. Set priorities and learn to say no. Put aside a time each day to do something you enjoy.
Fatigue can be a normal and important response to physical exertion, emotional stress, boredom, or lack of sleep. However, it can also be a nonspecific sign of a more serious psychological or physical disorder. If fatigue is not relieved by enough sleep, good nutrition, or low-stress environment, an evaluation by a doctor is advised. Because fatigue is a common complaint, sometimes a potentially serious case may be overlooked, leading to a more severe illness.
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