If you often find yourself exhausted and unmotivated, even after a full night of sleep, it is possible you suffer from fatigue. Fatigue differs from common tiredness in that your overall state of mind and well-being begin to diminish, and your daily life is directly affected. Oftentimes, fatigue is temporary and can be cured by changing daily habits, such as diet and exercise. However, chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) - something about 4 to 8 of every 1,000 adults suffers from - is more serious and may require medical attention.
Causes of Fatigue
Most cases of fatigue result directly from lack of sleep or stress on the job and in life. You may also experience fatigue at the onset of a common cold or flu. For women, a common reason for fatigue is hormonal imbalance, especially when approaching menopause or as part of PMS. Low hormonal levels may leave you feeling nauseous, irritable, and endlessly tired.
While persistent fatigue does not necessarily mean that you suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome, it is nonetheless a good reason to visit your doctor as it could point out to an underlying condition.
What Is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?
Differing from temporary fatigue - which goes away after minor adjustments to daily life - chronic fatigue syndrome is persistent. Affecting both muscles and the brain, CFS is more common in women than in men, and can also affect children in the early teen years.
While the exact cause of CFS is still unknown, researchers are still debating the following possibilities:
- Immune system issues
- Hormonal imbalance
- Emotional trauma
- Certain viral infections (e.g., mononucleosis)
If you suffer from CFS, it is extremely important that you consult your doctor to figure out a treatment plan.
How Does Fatigue Affect Daily Life?
While most people who suffer from fatigue only experience mild symptoms, one in four people develop severe symptoms. This means that completing basic daily tasks can become a struggle. You may also find yourself needing to sleep in the middle of the day, simply because your body and mind cannot function properly otherwise.
Finding the Cure
Although each case of fatigue or CFS is unique, there are multiple ways to improve quality of life if you suffer from it, including:
Due to the fact that each case of fatigue or CFS is unique, the treatment plan will be tailored just for you specifically. Studies show that regular exercise can boost your energy levels in multiple ways. Breaking a sweat creates more energy-producing cells in your body, and it improves hormonal production in the body, which can enhance energy.
If you are trying to combat fatigue at home, guarana - a plant that originates from the South American jungle - is a soldier in the fight against fatigue, and improves stamina with its energy-boosting characteristics. You can consume the plant in supplement form, or by way of guarana tonic tea.
Another excellent natural option is eating more citric fruits, such as lemons. They aid in reducing stress and fatigue, as well as preventing colds. This is a win-win option!
In more serious cases, doctors can prescribe certain medications to help with bodily pain or improve sleep disorders.
While fatigue syndrome can be severely disruptive, it is important to look for ways to manage it for the long term. For severe cases, this will probably require a doctor's guidance, but there is plenty you can do for treating fatigue at home.
- HerbaZest. Guarana. Retrieved January 5, 2015, from www.herbazest.com/herbs/guarana
- HerbaZest. Lemon. Retrieved January 5, 2015, from www.herbazest.com/herbs/guarana
- NHS Choices. (2013). Chronic fatigue syndrome. Retrieved January 5, 2015, from www.nhs.uk/conditions/chronic-fatigue-syndrome/pages/introduction.aspx
- Harvard Health Blog. (2011). Fight fatigue by finding the cause. Retrieved January 5, 2015, from http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/fight-fatigue-by-finding-the-cause-201107062952