How To Naturally Stimulate Appetite In The Elderly
What is the best natural treatment for loss of appetite in seniors and older adults? If the loss of appetite is due to a serious medical condition, treating that condition is the best approach for stimulating the appetite. Overall, healthy eating habits must be encouraged with the elderly.
A holistic nutritionist or dietitian can recommend the best foods and approach for the root cause of appetite loss. Since loneliness and depression have an association with appetite loss, a counselor or psychotherapist and eating with others can also help encourage eating.
Lets take a look at some of the ways to stimulate appetite in seniors.
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Why Am I So Tired
You may be asking yourself, Why am I always tired? Why cant I seem to get out of this low-energy fog? First of all, youre not alone. Fatigue is a common problem and can manifest as feeling tired physically and/or mentally. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that about 15.3% of women and 10.1% of men regularly feel very tired or exhausted.
We all know that feeling exhausted reduces our ability to work effectively, manage day-to-day routines, and maintain family and social relationships. Extreme fatigue can cause us to be more prone to irritability and mood swings. Tragically, drowsiness when driving also causes about 72,000 car crashes a year in the U.S.
What Causes Excessive Sleepiness
There are many possible causes of excessive daytime sleepiness. One of the most common reasons is a chronic lack of sleep, whether due to long work hours, an irregular schedule, insomnia, or other reasons.
Excessive sleepiness can also be caused by getting fragmented or otherwise poor-quality sleep. Getting up multiple times a night to use the washroom, for example, disrupts the natural progression of the sleep stages and may reduce the proportion of restorative slow-wave sleep. Smoking, not exercising enough, and other lifestyle habits may also interfere with sleep quality and cause daytime sleepiness.
Many people who experience excessive daytime sleepiness dont appear to have any problems sleeping enough. In these cases, sleepiness may be a sign of an underlying health condition or sleep disorder.
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What Is Pots And Why Does It Cause Fatigue
POTS is a group of symptoms resulting from dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system. This branch of the nervous system regulates functions we dont consciously control like sweating and blood circulation.
In people with POTS, more blood collects in the lower body when standing upright. The heart beats faster to pump it up to the brain, but with little success. The causes of POTS are unknown, but the problem is thought to lie in the communication breakdown between the brain and the cardiovascular system.
POTS-related fatigue is physical in nature and the mechanism behind it is not fully understood. It may have several causes, including your body working harder to move the blood.
Who Gets Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Chronic fatigue syndrome can affect people of all ethnicities and ages, but is most common in people in their forties or fifties. It’s very rare in kids. A few teens do get CFS, and it affects more girls than guys.
Sometimes different people in the same family get CFS. This may be because the tendency to develop CFS is genetic.
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What Is The Treatment For Fatigue
The treatment for fatigue depends upon the cause. Some treatments for conditions that cause fatigue include medications, antibiotics, vitamins, and exercise. Medical treatment of fatigue depends on the treatment of its underlying cause. Fortunately, many causes of fatigue may be treated with medications, for example, iron supplements for anemia, medications and machines to help sleep apnea, medications to control blood sugar, medications to regulate thyroid function, antibiotics to treat infection, vitamins, and/or recommendations for dietary changes and a sensible exercise program. Again, treatment of the underlying cause is the key to treatment of the symptom of fatigue.
When Is Fatigue Considered Extreme
There is no good criteria for assessing the level of fatigue it depends on the person. However, most people know when their tiredness is more than a lack of sleep. Some of my patients remember the exact day they got hit with fatigue so overwhelming that they knew something was wrong.
Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome
POTS is a common condition affecting an estimated one to three million Americans. Researchers dont fully understand the causes of POTS, but it is more common in women than men and is more likely to develop in adolescents and young adults.
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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.
Underactive Thyroid And Fatigue
Symptoms: Extreme fatigue, sluggishness, feeling run-down, depression, cold intolerance, weight gain
The problem may be a slow or underactive thyroid. This is known as hypothyroidism. The thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland that sits at the base of your neck. It helps set the rate of metabolism, which is the rate at which the body uses energy.
According to the American Thyroid Foundation, about 17% of all women will have a thyroid disorder by age 60. And most won’t know it. The most common cause is an autoimmune disorder known as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Hashimoto’s stops the gland from making enough thyroid hormones for the body to work the way it should. The result is hypothyroidism, or a slow metabolism.
Blood tests known as T3 and T4 will detect thyroid hormones. If these hormones are low, synthetic hormones can bring you up to speed, and you should begin to feel better fairly rapidly.
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What Causes Extreme Fatigue After Eating
Experiencing fatigue after eating isnt normally something to worry about, however extreme tiredness after meals may indicate a health issue especially if you struggle with an eating disorder.
If youre eating the right foods in the right amounts, meals should leave you energized, not drowsy, so its important to get to the bottom of the issue and see a doctor if post-meal fatigue is an ongoing problem.
When Should I See A Doctor For Fatigue
If you’ve been tired for several weeks with no relief, it may be time to call your healthcare provider. He or she will ask questions about your sleep, daily activities, appetite, and exercise and will likely give you a physical exam and order lab tests.
Your treatment will be based on your history and the results of your exam and lab tests. Your doctor may prescribe medications to target underlying health problems, such as anemia or irregular thyroid activity. He or she may suggest that you eat a well-balanced diet and begin an exercise program.
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Pots: A Little Known Cause Of Extreme Fatigue
Everyone knows what being tired feels like at the end of a long day. But some people experience fatigue so severe and so seemingly random that its hard to describe. If that sounds familiar, there could be more going on than daily stress.
While there are many causes of fatigue, one of them is frequently missed and misdiagnosed: postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome . Physical medicine and neuromuscular specialist Tae Chung, M.D., answers questions about POTS and extreme fatigue as one of its symptoms.
Primary Or True Muscle Weakness
This shows itself as an inability to perform what you want to do with a muscle, even the first time you try. There is a reduction in the force which the muscle can exert, however hard you try. The muscle is not working properly it has become abnormal.
When this kind of weakness occurs the muscles are often floppier than usual and reduced in bulkiness. It can happen, for example, following stroke. It is also seen in a condition called muscular dystrophy . Both of these conditions result in weakened muscles which cannot move the usual load. Its a real change in muscle power.
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Doctors Recommend Getting A Blood Test For Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/chronic Fatigue Syndome If You Have Experienced Fatigue For Longer Than:
There is no blood test for myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndome. However, if you have experienced unexplained fatigue lasting longer than three months, you may want to see your doctor to rule out possible medical problems.myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome may be considered if you have experienced fatigue for longer than six months — especially if you have chronic pain or other common symptoms of ME/CFS. Diagnosis is usually based on an evaluation of the patient’s history and a thorough physical and mental examination that rules out other potential causes.
Excessive Consumption Of Alcohol
Alcohol is a depressant, so drinking too much of it can lead to low mood and possibly even clinical depression. This in itself can cause fatigue, as the stress resulting from a low mood can use up a lot of energy and affect sleep. Alcohol is also a sedative, so drinking regularly can induce a constant sleepy state, affecting everyday life.
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Overuse/ Too Much Exercise
Feeling fatigued after vigorous exercise or working for a prolonged period can be normal for the legs. The key is to rest here, because, without proper rest, muscles, including those in the lower body can have a hard time recovering properly.
Enough rest and working within the limits of your body must be made sure. Take plenty of breaks throughout the day, if you frequently use your legs while working out. This will assist in avoiding stress, strain, and injury.
How Will Your Doctor Treat Fatigue
Your doctors recommended treatment plan will depend on whats causing your fatigue. To make a diagnosis, they will likely ask you questions about:
- the nature of your fatigue, including when it started and whether it gets better or worse at certain times
- other symptoms that youve been experiencing
- other medical conditions that you have
- your lifestyle and sources of stress
- medications that youre taking
If your doctor suspects you have an underlying medical condition thats causing your fatigue, they may order some medical tests. For example, they may order blood or urine tests.
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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.
Physical Causes Of Tiredness
There are several health conditions that can make you feel tired or exhausted.
Tiredness can also be the result of:
- pregnancy particularly in the first 12 weeks
- being overweight or obese your body has to work harder to do everyday activities
- being underweight poor muscle strength can make you tire more easily
- cancer treatments, such as radiotherapy and chemotherapy
- carbon monoxide poisoning especially if your gas boiler has not been serviced regularly
- side effects of medicines and some herbal remedies
If you have been feeling constantly tired for more than 4 weeks, it’s a good idea to see your GP so they can confirm or rule out a medical condition that could be causing your tiredness.
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When Does Fatigue Happen In Covid
Fatigue is an early symptom of COVID-19, commonly occurring within the first seven days of the illness. On average, it lasts for five to eight days but some people can suffer from COVID-related fatigue for up to two weeks or much longer.
Fatigue is a common symptom for people with long COVID, or post-COVID syndrome. The good news is, that in most people it does go away eventually.
How Can I Feel Less Tired
Some changes to your lifestyle can make you feel less tired. Here are some suggestions:
- Keep a fatigue diary to help you find patterns throughout the day when you feel more or less tired.
- Exercise regularly. Almost anyone, at any age, can do some type of physical activity. If you have concerns about starting an exercise program, ask your doctor if there are any activities you should avoid. Moderate exercise may improve your appetite, energy, and outlook. Some people find that exercises combining balance and breathing improve their energy.
- Try to avoid long naps late in the day. Long naps can leave you feeling groggy and may make it harder to fall asleep at night. Read A Good Nights Sleep for tips on getting better rest at night.
- Stop smoking.Smoking is linked to many diseases and disorders, such as cancer, heart disease, and breathing problems, which can drain your energy.
- Ask for help if you feel swamped. Some people have so much to do that just thinking about their schedules can make them feel tired. Working with others may help a job go faster and be more fun.
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Viral Or Bacterial Infection And Fatigue
Symptoms: Fatigue, fever, head or body aches.
Fatigue can be a symptom of infections ranging from the flu to HIV. If you have an infection, you’ll probably have other symptoms like fever, head or body aches, shortness of breath, or appetite loss.
Infections that may cause fatigue include:
Symptoms: Chronic fatigue, deep muscle pain, painful tender points, sleep problems, anxiety, depression
Fibromyalgia is one of the more common causes of chronic fatigue and musculoskeletal pain, especially in women. Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome are considered separate but related disorders. They share a common symptom: severe fatigue that greatly interferes with people’s lives.
With fibromyalgia, you may feel that no matter how long you sleep, it’s never restful. And you may feel as if you are always fatigued during daytime hours. Your sleep may be interrupted by frequent waking. Yet, you may not remember any sleep disruptions the next day. Some people with fibromyalgia live in a constant fibro fog — a hazy feeling that makes it hard to concentrate.
Constant daytime fatigue with fibromyalgia often results in people not getting enough exercise. That causes a decline in physical fitness. It can also lead to mood-related problems. The best way to offset these effects is to try to exercise more. Exercise has tremendous benefits for sleep, mood, and fatigue.
Can Boredom Cause Fatigue
Being bored can make you feel tired. That may sound strange, but it’s true. If you were very busy during your working years, you may feel lost about how to spend your time when you retire. When you wake up in the morning, you may see long days stretching before you with nothing planned. It doesn’t have to be that way.
Engaging in social and productive activities that you enjoy, like volunteering in your community, may help maintain your well-being. Think about what interests you and what skills or knowledge you have to offer and look for places to volunteer. Read Participating in Activities You Enjoy for ways to find volunteer opportunities.
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Sleep Suggestions For Fighting Fatigue
A common cause of fatigue is not enough sleep, or poor quality sleep. Suggestions include:
- Get enough sleep two-thirds of us suffer from sleep problems, and many people dont get the sleep they need to stay alert through the day. Some recommendations on getting a good nights sleep include: go to bed and get up in the morning at the same time every day, avoid naps through the day, and have a warm bath or shower before bed.
- Limit caffeine too much caffeine, particularly in the evening, can cause insomnia. Limit caffeinated drinks to five or less per day, and avoid these types of drinks after dinner.
- Learn how to relax a common cause of insomnia is fretting about problems while lying in bed. Experiment with different relaxation techniques until you find one or two that work for you for example, you could think of a restful scene, focus on your breathing, or silently repeat a calming mantra or phrase.
- Avoid sleeping pills sleeping pills are not a long-term solution because they dont address the causes of insomnia.