How Do I Know If I’m Getting Enough Sleep
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Chronic Fatigue Cause No : Sleep Apnea
If you’re not getting enough sleep, it stands to reason you’ll feel fatigued. But what if you don’t realize that your sleep is insufficient? This happens to millions of people with a condition called sleep apnea, a sleep disorder that causes you to momentarily stop breathing, often many times during the night. Each time you stop breathing, you awaken just long enough to disrupt your sleep cycle, usually without being aware of it.
More than one-third of adults in the U.S. report that they snore at least a few nights a week, according to the National Sleep Foundation. Snoring is caused by the vibration of the soft parts of the throat while breathing in and out during sleep. Sometimes snoring can account for daytime symptoms such as excessive fatigue.
But with sleep apnea, a condition related to snoring, there are repeated periods when breathing stops during sleep.
Obstructive sleep apnea results in low oxygen levels in the blood because the blockages prevent air from getting to the lungs. The low oxygen levels also affect your heart and brain function. The only clue that you might have sleep apnea is chronic fatigue.
What can you do? First, talk with your doctor about a sleep study to determine if you have sleep apnea. Both obesity and smoking are risk factors for sleep apnea, so losing weight and quitting smoking are recommended. Sleeping on your side instead of your back may help eliminate mild sleep apnea.
Foods To Avoid To Improve Sleep
Foods high in sugar and caffeine can have a temporary energy-boosting effect on the mind and body’s alertness but is often followed by a crashing feeling that can last much longer than the short energy surge you were after.
Fatty foods and processed carbs have also been associated with daytime sleepiness. These foods may fill you up but they’re not loaded with the vitamins and nutrients your body needs to produce ample amounts of energy.
- Spicy foods close to bedtime. Spicy foods are notorious for causing heartburn, indigestion, and acid reflux. Heartburn can be made worse while lying down as it allows the acids to creep up into the esophagus and burn the sensitive lining.
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When To See A Doctor About Being Tired All The Time
While making certain lifestyle tweaks could help with your fatigue, its unlikely to do much if youre struggling with an underlying health condition. In those situations, youll need to seek help from a medical professional.
Of course, that can be tricky to detect on your own. So, when should you seek medical attention? If fatigue is persistent, and it is disrupting daily tasks, work productivity, or limiting your participation in enjoyable activities, it may be time to speak to your doctor, Dr. Waters says.
Why You Wake Up Tired
Did I get enough sleep? If thatâs the first thing that pops into your mind as soon as your alarm clock beeps, a shift in perspective may be helpful. Constantly worrying about how often youâre waking up tired can be stressful and counterproductive, managing expectations is a good first step toward feeling better about your sleep.
Waking up feeling slightly groggy or tired is just part of the human experience. It’s called sleep inertia: “The transitional state between sleep and wake, marked by impaired performance â¦ and a desire to return to sleep.” The main thing to know about sleep inertia is it is completely normal. It’s misleading marketing â often seen in commercials for mattresses and pharmaceutical sleep aids â that gives us the idea we should wake up with raised, outstretched arms and feel immediately amazing.
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Reasons Why You Feel Tired Even After 8 Hours Of Sleep
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We all know how important sleep is, and we dutifully hit the sack to make sure we get the recommended 7 8 hours of sleep each night.
But after all that rest, do you feel exactly how you did before turning in for the night groggy and tired?
Its frustrating. So, here are 9 reasons why you dont feel refreshed and rejuvenated after sleeping through the night.
Fatigue Cause No : Depression
You may think of depression as an emotional disorder, but it contributes to many physical symptoms, as well. Fatigue, headaches, and loss of appetite are among the most common symptoms. If you feel tired and “down” for more than a few weeks, see your doctor.
Fix: Depression responds well to talk therapy and/or medication.
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Fatigue Cause No : Anemia
Anemia is one of the leading causes of fatigue in women. Menstrual blood loss can cause an iron deficiency, putting women at risk. Red blood cells are needed because they carry oxygen to your tissues and organs.
Fix: For anemia caused by an iron deficiency, taking iron supplements and eating iron-rich foods, such as lean meat, liver, shellfish, beans, and enriched cereal, can help.
Fatigue Cause No : Caffeine Overload
Caffeine can improve alertness and concentration in moderate doses. But too much can increase heart rate, blood pressure, and jitteriness. And research indicates too much actually causes fatigue in some people.
Fix: Gradually cut back on coffee, tea, chocolate, soft drinks, and any medications that contain caffeine. Stopping suddenly can cause caffeine withdrawal and more fatigue.
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Erratic Or Changing Sleep Patterns
Another common cause of fatigue is simply not getting enough sleep. Your teen may have lots of homework that keeps them up late during the week, and/or have to wake up early. On weekends they may go to bed even later and then not feel like getting up until noon on Saturday and Sunday.
These changes in sleep pattern, coupled with stress during the week, can lead to fatigue.
Improve Your Sleeping Environment
Is your room too warm? Does light get into your room at night? Is there a lot of noise coming in from outside? What about your pillows and your mattress?
All these factors impact the quality of your sleep and you should look into all of them. Sleep takes up roughly one-third of your day and will continue doing so for the rest of your life, so it is worth optimizing.
Generally, an optimal sleep environment is:
- Only used for sleep or intimate relations
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Habits To Improve Your Sleep
- Be consistent. Go to bed at the same time each night and get up at the same time each morning, including on the weekends.
- Make sure your bedroom is quiet, dark, relaxing, and at a comfortable temperature.
- Remove electronic devices such as TVs, computers, and phones from the bedroom.
- Avoid large meals, caffeine, and alcohol before bedtime.
- Dont use tobacco.
- Get some exercise. Being physically active during the day can help you fall asleep more easily at night.
Not Getting Enough High
Not getting enough sleep is one of the more obvious causes of fatigue.
Your body does many things while you sleep, including store memory and release hormones that regulate your metabolism and energy levels .
After a night of high-quality sleep, you typically wake up feeling refreshed, alert and energized.
According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and Sleep Research Society, adults need an average of seven hours of sleep per night for optimal health .
Importantly, sleep should be restful and uninterrupted in order to allow your brain to go through all five stages of each sleep cycle .
In addition to getting enough sleep, maintaining a regular sleep routine also seems to help prevent tiredness.
In one study, adolescents who went to bed at the same time on weekdays and weekends reported less fatigue and less difficulty falling asleep than those who stayed up later and slept fewer hours on the weekends .
Being physically active during the day may help you get more restorative sleep at night. One study in older people found that exercising helped improve their sleep quality and reduce levels of fatigue .
Furthermore, napping may help boost energy levels. Taking naps has been shown to decrease tiredness in pilots, who often experience fatigue due to long working hours and jet lag .
To improve the amount and quality of your sleep, go to bed at roughly the same time every night, relax before sleeping and get plenty of activity during the day.
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Food Allergies Intolerances And Sensitivities
When you consume foods which youre allergic or intolerant to, your body reacts with a natural defense mechanism called inflammation. Inflammatory symptoms can bother you at any time, including when youre sleeping.
You can experience significant congestion, which will make you feel stuffed or puffy upon waking. It can also raise your cortisol levels, which we know interferes with hormone production, including melatonin. You can also wake up feeling achy and sore throughout your body.
Clearly, this is not a good way to start the day!
Chronic Fatigue: Tired Of Feeling Tired
Learn what may be causing your chronic fatigue … and 10 solutions.
Sure, we all know what it feels like to be tired. But chronic fatigue refers to a lingering tiredness that is constant and limiting.
According Harris H. McIlwain, MD, Tampa-based rheumatologist and author of The Fibromyalgia Handbook, patients who complain of fatigue feel tired even when they’ve had plenty of sleep and should feel rested.
While some patients admit to feeling sleepy, with fatigue there’s usually there’s a feeling of exhaustion without feeling drowsy says McIlwain, an adjunct professor at the University of South Florida. “Some patients with fatigue compare it to having the flu or to the feeling after working very long hours and missing a lot of sleep.”
These patients say they are fatigued on arising in the morning, fatigued after mild activity such as grocery shopping, too fatigued to function adequately at work or do household chores, and too fatigued to exercise or have sex, McIlwain says. “In most cases, there’s a reason for the fatigue, whether poor time management, too much caffeine, anemia, fibromyalgia, depression, or even undiagnosed heart disease.”
Before you blame your age or your “superwoman” lifestyle on your feelings of fatigue, learn what might be at the root of your unexplained tiredness and what some top experts recommend to resolve your chronic fatigue.
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Sleep Disorders And Fatigue
Symptoms: Chronic fatigue, feeling exhausted upon awakening, snoring
Sleep disorders are a group of conditions that disrupt or prevent restful, restorative sleep. That can take a toll on your health and quality of life, so its important to look out for signs and symptoms.
Sleep apnea is one of the most common sleep disorders. If you or your partner notices loud snoring and you wake up tired and stay that way, you could have sleep apnea. More than one-third of adults in the U.S. snore at least a few nights a week. But if the snoring stops your breathing for seconds at a time, it could be sleep apnea. Learn more about the best sleep positions and see if sleeping on your stomach is bad or not.
Obstructive sleep apnea causes low blood oxygen levels. That’s because blockages prevent air from getting to the lungs. The low oxygen levels also affect how well your heart and brain work. Sometimes, the only clue that you might have sleep apnea is chronic fatigue.
Your doctor may prescribe a medical device called CPAP that helps keep your airways open while you sleep. In severe cases of sleep apnea, surgery may help. The surgeon will remove tissues that are blocking the airways. If left untreated, sleep apnea can increase your risk of a stroke or heart attack.
But sleep apnea is just one of many sleep disorders that cause fatigue. Other common types include:
What Is Tiredness A Symptom Of
Medical causes unrelenting exhaustion may be a sign of an underlying illness, such as a thyroid disorder, heart disease or diabetes. Lifestyle-related causes alcohol or drugs or lack of regular exercise can lead to feelings of fatigue. Workplace-related causes workplace stress can lead to feelings of fatigue.
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What Else Causes Fatigue
Some lifestyle habits can make you feel tired. Here are some things that may be draining your energy:
- Staying up too late. A good night’s sleep is important to feeling refreshed and energetic. Try going to bed and waking up at the same time every day.
- Having too much caffeine. Drinking caffeinated drinks like soda, tea, or coffee late in the day can keep you from getting a good night’s sleep. Limit the amount of caffeine you have during the day and avoid it in the evening.
- Drinking too much alcohol.Alcohol changes the way you think and act. It may also interact with your medicines.
- Eating junk food. Say “no thanks” to food with empty calories, like fried foods and sweets, which have few nutrients and are high in fat and sugars. Choose nutritious foods to get the energy you need to do the things you enjoy.
- Getting too little or too much exercise. Regular exercise can boost your energy levels, but dont overdo it.
Why Are You Always Tired Even Though You Get Enough Sleep Science Has Some Answers
When you’re feeling exhausted, the first advice is always to get more sleep.
But some of us spend our days tired and lethargic even after getting the recommended 7+ hours of shut-eye every night. So, what’s going on?
As this episode of AsapSCIENCE explains, there’s a wide range of reasons you could be constantly fatigued even if you think you’re getting enough sleep:
For starters, you might just be too sedentary.
Even though we think of physical exertion as exhausting, it turns out that doing light exercise just a few times a week can leave you more energised.
Just think back to a time when you’ve had an unusually active day outdoors, maybe going on a hike or throwing frisbee in the park.
Chances are you slept exceptionally well that night. People who exercise regularly get to enjoy a better night’s sleep, even if the number of hours they sleep remains the same.
Another common trap is our reliance on caffeine to stay awake.
Even though most of us wouldn’t guzzle espresso straight before bed, the window for avoiding caffeine is actually much longer.
Caffeine blocks adenosine, a neurotransmitter that accumulates in the brain throughout the day, making us drowsy in the evenings.
If you have coffee even as early as six hours before bed, it will mess with your adenosine production, making it harder to go to sleep.
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Fatigue Cause No : Sleep Apnea
Some people think they’re sleeping enough, but sleep apnea gets in the way. It briefly stops your breathing throughout the night. Each interruption wakes you for a moment, but you may not be aware of it. The result: youâre sleep-deprived despite spending eight hours in bed. Your doctor may order a sleep study to check for this.
Fix: Lose weight if you’re overweight, quit smoking, and you may need a CPAP device to help keep your airway passages open while you sleep.
What Is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Chronic fatigue syndrome , also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis or ME/CFS, is a condition in which fatigue lasts six months or longer and is not related to other diseases or conditions. People with CFS experience symptoms that make it hard to do daily tasks like dressing or bathing. Along with severe fatigue that doesnt get better with rest, CFS symptoms can include problems with sleep, memory and concentrating, pain, dizziness, sore throat, and tender lymph nodes. Learn more about CFS.
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Spending Too Much Time Indoors
If your day is made up of waking up, getting in the car, working in an office or staying at home all day and then going to bed, you probably dont get enough fresh air or sunshine.
Fresh air gives you a burst of oxygen and sunshine gives you vitamin D. Both these elements boost your energy levels and wake you up. They also boost your immune system, so youre less likely to get colds, bugs and other illnesses which make you feel run down.
Try getting out of the office at lunchtime or going for a walk in the evenings. When its warm enough, open windows and doors too to let the air and sunshine go through your house.