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What Does Fatigue Feel Like

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  • take your sleep history, including how much sleep you get each night, what the quality of your sleep is like, and whether you snore, wake or stop breathing in the night
  • do a physical examination to check for signs of illness or disease
  • carry out tests to rule out physical causes, such as blood and urine tests.

What Causes ‘your’ Fatigue

Many physical and mental illnesses, as well as lifestyle factors, can cause your fatigue, and that can make it hard to diagnose. In some cases, it might be something simple and easy to fix, like having caffeine at bedtime. But other causes, like heart disease or COPD, are serious, and you may need to start long-term treatment right away.

Your doctor can help you sift through your health issues, as well as diet, exercise, and other lifestyle habits, in order to zero in on the cause and help you on the road to recovery.

What Can Cause Compassion Fatigue

Before we proceed with the signs and symptoms of compassion fatigue, we must first understand what can cause it.

Healthcare workers and chronic caregivers are the most susceptible people to compassion fatigue. Their job description requires them to care, listen, and devote themselves to caring and healing.

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Heart Disease And Fatigue

Symptoms: Fatigue from an activity that should be easy

If youre exhausted after an activity that used to be easy — for example, walking up the steps — it may be time to talk to your doctor about the possibility of heart disease. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in women. If your fatigue is related to your heart, medication or treatments can usually help correct the problem, cut the fatigue, and restore your energy.

You Feel Foggy Or Out Of It Mentally

What Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Feels Like

If in addition to feeling tired, you have a sense of fogginess or being “out of it,” this might be cause for concern. Cleveland Clinic pulmonologist Joseph Khabbaza, MD, says that some form of brain fog was found relatively often in patients, even in those with milder cases of COVID-19. And for more on cases that are not so mild, check out 80 Percent of Hospitalized COVID Patients Are Deficient in This Vitamin.

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When Youre Tired Of Being Tired

If fatigue is affecting your quality of life, its time to talk to your doctor. Tracking your daily sleep and activity levels can help you present him or her with a better overall picture of your condition, especially if your symptoms are vague. If you donât have a fitness or smartwatch, consider downloading a phone app like Sharecare, available for iOS and Android.

Medical City Healthcare provides comprehensive emergency services across North Texas.

At Medical City Healthcare, weâre dedicated to the care and improvement of human life. So, we hope youâll Take Care!

For more information, call our Ask a Nurse hotline 24/7 or use Find a Doctor online.

You can also get care for minor injuries or illness at CareNow Urgent Care or visit Medical City Virtual Care for non-emergency medical treatment from your computer or smartphone.

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What Can I Do About Fatigue

  • Recognise that the fatigue is real and be kind to yourself. Explain to your family, friends, and colleagues at work the impact the fatigue is having. Because fatigue is invisible, sometimes it is not properly understood. Until it is experienced it can be hard to understand the impact of fatigue and how debilitating it can be.

  • Get a good nights sleep. Fatigue feels much worse if your sleep pattern is also disturbed. Try to improve your sleep pattern by reading the sleeping well section.

  • Try relaxation techniques. These can help with fatigue as they promote a good sleep pattern, and can help reduce stress. Consider trying techniques such as mindful meditation, aromatherapy, yoga, tai chi, and other activities you find relaxing, such as reading or having a long shower or bath.

  • Plan, prioritise and delegate.

  • Plan. Plan each day in advance so that you can do what you need, and consider what can be delegated to other people. Build a regular routine, and try to avoid boom and bust behaviour, where you are very active on good days and then feel exhausted the following day. An activity diary can help with this.
  • Prioritise. You can also decide which activities that you are doing are most important to you. If this is a task which is very important do it when you have the most energy. If they are not important, but have to be done can you delegate them?
  • Eat well. A healthy diet can help. See the section on eating well.

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    How Bad Can Seasonal Allergies Make You Feel

    You might have a headache, but more likely you feel pressure or fullness in your nasal passages. Pressure from congestion creates discomfort that can register as tenderness. If you get allergy-related migraines or havent slept well, congestion can worsen an existing headache and seem to concentrate it in the sinuses.

    What Can You Expect From Heart Failure Treatment

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    Heart failure treatment is designed to dramatically reduce or halt your symptoms and hopefully prevent potential complications like kidney or liver damage, Dr. Wong says.

    There are lots of medications that can be used to treat heart failure. In the early stages, the basic gist is that certain drugs can help to relax blood vessels, lower blood pressure, improve blood flow, and decrease the strain on your heart. Others can help you release extra fluid to keep it from building up in your body. If you progress to more advanced heart failure stages, there are medications that can help strengthen your heart muscle contractions to pump blood more effectively, according to the Mayo Clinic.

    Youll likely be encouraged to make some lifestyle changes as well. According to the AHA, that can include things like quitting smoking if you use tobacco, avoiding alcohol, limiting your sodium intake or making other dietary changes, exercising regularly, prioritizing sleep, reducing stress, monitoring your blood pressure, and more.

    Your doctor may also recommend certain surgeries or medical procedures if needed in more severe cases, which can include options like coronary bypass surgery, heart valve repair or replacement, a heart transplant, among others, depending on the specific cause of your heart failure.4

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    How Long Can Fatigue Last

    Cancer related fatigue is different from tiredness which is usually short term and you feel better after you stop, sleep or rest. Cancer fatigue doesnt usually go away with sleep or rest. It can be severe and last a long time.

    Fatigue can last for different amounts of time depending on whats causing it. Most people start to feel better after treatment finishes. But it can take several weeks or months before you feel like your old self. In some people it may take a lot longer.

    Is Pots More Common In Certain People

    There are no established risk factors for POTS. However, it is known to run in families, so it could have a genetic component. Researchers have also established a link between POTS and Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome . So if you have one of these conditions, you might also have the other.

    A big group of those diagnosed with POTS is young women and teens. However, this doesnt mean they are more likely to develop this condition.

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    Mild And Moderate Depression

    These are the most common types. More than simply feeling blue, the symptoms of mild depression can interfere with your daily life, robbing you of joy and motivation. Those symptoms become amplified in moderate depression and can lead to a decline in confidence and self-esteem.

    Recurrent, mild depression

    Dysthymia is a type of chronic low-grade depression. More days than not, you feel mildly or moderately depressed, although you may have brief periods of normal mood.

    • The symptoms of dysthymia are not as strong as the symptoms of major depression, but they last a long time .
    • Some people also experience major depressive episodes on top of dysthymia, a condition known as double depression.
    • If you suffer from dysthymia, you may feel like youve always been depressed. Or you may think that your continuous low mood is just the way you are.

    Heart Failure Early Signs And Symptoms

    What Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Really Feels Like for Me
    • Heart failure is a condition whereby the heart muscle is unable to adequately pump blood throughout the body.
    • There are a variety of illnesses and diseases that affect the heartâs pumping capability.
    • Heart failure causes signs and symptoms due to the excess accumulation of fluid within the tissues of the body.
    • When the heart muscle becomes weak and cannot adequately pump blood into the arteries, blood âbacks up,â and pressure in the blood vessels causes water to leak out of blood vessels into the tissues of the body, which may cause heart failure.

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    You Don’t Have An Appetite

    In more severe cases of COVID-19, Khabbaza says patients often have more serious delirium that accompanies their fatigue. This, he says, may be a result of a lack of appetiteanother symptom that can help you distinguish if your fatigue is being caused by COVID. “People may also have lower appetites so their nutritional status might not be great, they might be sleeping too little or too much, which can affect how your mind is wired,” Khabbaza says. And for more helpful information delivered to your inbox, .

    Can High Blood Pressure Cause You To Feel More Tired

    In a word, ‘yes.’ High blood pressure can play a role in tiredness. But, why? Well, high blood pressure increases pressure on vital organs such as the brain, heart and kidneys, which causes tiredness.

    Often, unexplained tiredness that doesnt appear to have a cause can be a result of high blood pressure.

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    So What Does Chronic Fatigue Feel Like

    Sometimes, chronic fatigue feels like being covered in tar from head to toe. Limbs are heavy and there is a weight that is impossible to shift, even when doing the most menial of activities.

    It may feel as if someone is stabbing my legs with a small knife. Or, it can be a strange numbing sensation, like my leg is about to crack open.

    Most days it feels like staring at the sun or walking out into bright daylight, except this happens while indoors. I can spend the day unable to open my eyes completely.

    Occasionally, its close to that sweet spot between being drunk and hungover, except no cocktail happy hour preceded it.

    On most days, its like climbing up a steep hill carrying a baby elephant. I could go on

    Most doctors seem to overlook fatigue when treating women with endometriosis. As a patient, all I can do is stop fighting the fatigue and lie down, yet my body refuses to recharge, no matter how much I sleep. What I could really do with is a solution or a line of treatment. Maybe just some advice on what steps I can take to carry on with my life. Last week, I lost three days of work because I could barely do anything other than remain horizontal and close my eyes.

    Chronic fatigue is life-altering and needs specific attention. Having a health professional perform a subtle yet quite noticeable eye roll or barely acknowledge us when we mention this very real symptom should be a thing of the past.

    When To Seek Professional Help


    If support from family and friends and positive lifestyle changes arent enough, it may be time to seek help from a mental health professional. There are many effective treatments for depression, including:

    Therapy. Consulting a therapist can provide you tools to treat depression from a variety of angles and motivate you to take the action necessary. Therapy can also offer you the skills and insight to prevent the problem from coming back.

    Atypical Depression: Whats in a Name? Article on the symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of atypical depression.

    Depression and Other Illnesses An overview of the mental and physical illnesses that often co-exist with depression, and how this impacts treatment.

    Depression support & suicide prevention help

    Depression support

    In the U.S.: Find DBSA Chapters/Support Groups or call the NAMI Helpline for support and referrals at 1-800-950-6264

    UK: Find Depression support groups in-person and online or call the Mind Infoline at 0300 123 3393

    Australia: Find Support Groups and regional resources or call the SANE Help Centre at 1800 18 7263

    India: Call the Vandrevala Foundation Helpline at 1860 2662 345 or 1800 2333 330

    Suicide prevention help

    In the U.S.: Call National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255

    UK and Ireland: Call Samaritans UK at 116 123

    Australia: Call Lifeline Australia at 13 11 14

    Other countries: Visit IASP or International Suicide Hotlines to find a helpline near you

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    Why Am I Tired All The Time

    Feeling exhausted is so common that it has its own acronym, TATT, which stands for “tired all the time”.

    We all feel tired from time to time. The reasons are usually obvious and include:

    • too many late nights
    • long hours spent at work
    • a baby keeping you up at night

    But tiredness or exhaustion that goes on for a long time is not normal. It can affect your ability to get on and enjoy your life.

    Unexplained tiredness is one of the most common reasons for people to see their GP.

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    Another way that chronic stress makes us feel exhausted is by interfering with sleep, says Bufka. When were feeling stressed, our sleep can get disrupted, which naturally leads to feelings of tiredness and exhaustion, she says.

    We really rely on sleep to recover each day, explains Epel. And so for many of us, even though we might think were sleeping the same number of hours, its not the same quality. It doesnt have the same restorative ability, because were getting less deep sleep, and we think that is tied to this chronic, subtle uncertainty, stress.

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    What Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Feels Like

    Chronic fatigue syndrome is far different from normal tiredness due to physical or emotional stress. The debilitating condition can last for yearsor even a lifetimeand is not curable. Researchers do not understand what causes CFS/ME, which makes it difficult to diagnose and even harder to treat. Doctors currently focus on treating the symptoms of CFS/ME with medications.

    Although no one knows how CFS/ME develops, researchers agree on a few facts. Nearly 2.5 million Americans may have the condition. The average age of onset is 33. The condition most commonly affects women between the ages of 40 and 60. Most CFS/ME patients are Caucasian, but because the disorder may be underreported it is hard to tell how people of other ethnicities may also have the syndrome.

    One thing everyone agrees on is that CFS/ME is a real, debilitating illness. Heres what it feels like to live with , and the symptoms that make it more than just feeling tired.

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    How Fatigue Can Affect Your Daily Life

    What Everyday Tasks Feel Like for Someone With Chronic Fatigue

    Fatigue can be very frustrating. You and your relatives might underestimate how much it can affect daily life.

    Everyday life can be hard work and you might not have the energy to cook, clean, bathe or go shopping. You might not even feel up to a chat. Things that you used to find second nature or easy are now a task and can be hard work.

    You and your doctor can sometimes overlook fatigue, especially if you have other side effects. Its important to tell your doctor or nurse about how youre coping day to day and if you are struggling.

    Fatigue can affect the way you feel about yourself and your relationships with other people. You can feel very down and not want to go out or be with people which can be hard for them to understand.

    You might have to stop working or cut down your hours. This can affect how much money you have.

    You might feel like fatigue is a constant reminder of your cancer and this can be hard to accept.

    You might worry that because you feel so tired all the time your cancer could be getting worse. But it is more likely to be a side effect of treatment, or due to the fact that cancer can cause fatigue.

    Fatigue is very real and can have a big impact on your life. Let your doctor or nurse know if you think you have symptoms of fatigue. There are ways of managing it and your medical team will try to help you.

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    It May All Be Rooted In Stress

    Its not clear what causes depression, but prolonged stress seems to play a major role. When were stressed, the brain is flooded with the stress hormone cortisol. If stress remains heightened for a long time, there will be more cortisol and less dopamine and serotonine, the lack of which have been linked with depression. So, stress might exhaust the brain and lead to depression, which seems to trigger vicious cycles: youre depressed, so you become more stressfed out you have trouble sleeping, so you feel tired you feel tired so you dont feel like doing anything meaningful anymore. It really is terrible, and once the circle is complete, most people have a hard time breaking free.

    This is why depression can be very cruel, and serious medical attention needs to be considered. Both depression and insomnia can be treated with antidepressants. The most antidepressants belong to the class called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors , and insomniacs who start taking one of those drugs often find relief for their sleeping problems. Non-pharmaceutical methods of addressing insomnia can also help with depression. A few short tips that might help include:

    • exercising during the day, but avoid doing so two hours before planning to go to bed,
    • avoid caffeine and alcohol,
    • use deep-breathing exercises to relieve anxiety.

    Hopefully this, article helps explain why depression makes you tired.

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