Tiredness, fatigue and lack of energy can negatively impact performance at work, family life, and social relationships. Fatigue has a reputation as a vague and difficult problem for doctors to investigate, and many people with fatigue do not report it to their doctor.
Doctors who are conscious of this take the problem seriously and attempt to determine an underlying cause. There are many reasons people become tired, and, consequently, there are many ways to rectify the situation.
What is fatigue ?
Simply put, fatigue is the feeling of being tired.
It is generally different from the sleepy feeling of drowsiness, or the psychological feeling of apathy, although these might both accompany fatigue.
Other terms to describe fatigue include:
- reduced or no energy
- physical or mental exhaustion
- lack of motivation
Causes of fatigue and lack of energy
If the lack of energy and tiredness stick to our skin and seem to be right for our good mood, it is probably time to find the reason. A quick overview of different possible causes.
Unless you already have a good idea of the cause of our lack of energy, the first thing to do to try to alleviate our fatigue is to … sleep! Who knows, maybe our energy is gone along with our hours of sleep? To find out, we assess our habits: Go to bed very late? Is our sleep disturbed? Are we used to having insomnia? Then, according to our assessment, we try to make the necessary adjustments. For example, going to bed an hour earlier, solving our insomnia problems by consulting a specialist if necessary, etc.
In addition, allowing yourself to sleep according to our natural rhythm for a few days would be ideal. “It’s about going to bed and getting up without an alarm clock,” explains Isabelle Patenaude, osteopath at the Spinal Mouvement clinic in Montreal. We let our body rest for the number of hours it needs. A little sleep cure, in a way! ” If we find that our fatigue persists beyond one or two weeks despite the positive changes made to our sleep habits, we consult our doctor to make sure that an illness is not the cause.
ENERGY EATING DISEASES
Of course, when you are sick, whatever the disease, our energy often takes for its cold. However, certain diseases have the effect of draining our energy without us even realizing that we have it!
Anemia . We lack iron and there are not enough red blood cells to carry oxygen to our organs. “In women, we always check if excessive menstruation is not the cause,” says Dr. Sylvain Dion, general practitioner and president of the Association des médecins de CLSC du Québec. It can also be occult digestive bleeding, in other words bleeding that a patient cannot see for himself. ” For anemia, a doctor will prescribe iron doses.
Mononucleosis. Caused by a virus, this disease manifests as extreme fatigue, sore throat, swollen glands and general weakness. It is diagnosed by a blood test. Our immune system will get rid of it alone. Dr. Alain Bédard, a general practitioner at the Quatre-Bourgeois Medical Center in Quebec, recommends for our recovery that we hydrate well, rest, not get cold and avoid heavy efforts.
Hypothyroidism. It is a disease that affects 2 to 8 times more women than men. Our thyroid gland, located at the base of the neck, then works in slow motion. Our metabolism too! You can be cold and suddenly tired. Dr. Dion also compares the thyroid gland to our body’s thermostat. Hypothyroidism is regulated by taking replacement thyroid hormones.
Depression.A temporary depression does not prevent us from getting out of bed and laughing. A depression, yes. Depression is often caused by external (layoff, separation, illness, etc.) or psychological (loneliness, low self-esteem, etc.) factors. Genetic factors can also be taken into account, for example if our mother suffered from depression herself. Whatever the cause, depression causes some neurotransmitters to malfunction and causes great physical upheaval. Some symptoms that should put us on the ear: significant fatigue and sadness that persist, self-worth and excessive guilt, insomnia, loss of motivation and pleasure, black ideas … Once depression is properly diagnosed, it is diagnosed will treat with antidepressants,
READ HERE: Signs and symptoms of depression
Type 2 diabetes. It occurs when our body treats sugars poorly and as a result our blood sugar becomes too high. We are then in chronic hyperglycemia. Often associated with overweight and a poor lifestyle, this disease affects nearly 650,000 Quebecers. Many people don’t even know they have it. A blood test can detect it. Better diet and regular exercise may avoid taking medication.
Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. We do not yet know the exact causes of these two ailments, the symptoms of which are similar: severe and persistent fatigue, sleep disturbances, diffuse pain throughout the body. It is often difficult to go about your daily tasks when you have it. Diagnosis of these ailments can be difficult, since all other diseases with similar symptoms must first be hypothesized. Thereafter, medication to relieve pain may be recommended. However, a healthy diet, periods of daily relaxation and gentle physical exercises (yoga, aqua fitness, walking) can improve our general condition.
Heart failure. It occurs when the heart, damaged by an illness or a heart attack, can no longer send all the necessary blood to the parts of the body, especially during exercise or in times of stress. Extreme fatigue, shortness of breath, sudden weight gain and the continued feeling of overeating are some of the symptoms of heart failure. If we can’t cure it, we can very well control it with medication and a better lifestyle. In particular, you should not consume more than 2,000 mg of sodium per day and reduce caffeine. Follow-up with a doctor is essential.
OTHER PHYSICAL CAUSES OF FATIGUE
It is not illnesses, just bad habits that often fuel our fatigue. Fortunately, it is fairly easy to remedy.
Bad breathing. Our cells and organs need oxygen to function properly. So bad breathing inevitably causes fatigue. To properly relax our diaphragm and recharge your batteries, Isabelle Patenaude and Dr Bédard recommend cardiac coherence. Well documented by Montreal physician David O’Hare, heart coherence is a breathing technique that helps regulate heartbeat. It is done three times a day for 5 minutes, at the rate of at least 6 deep breaths per minute. We can even download a fun application on our cell phone or tablet to breathe according to cardiac coherence (RespiRelax on iOS, Respiroguide on Android).
Lack of exercise. A sedentary lifestyle leads to a lack of vitality and energy. All the specialists interviewed also recommend a minimum of physical activity to ward off fatigue. The exercise is not limited to exhausting yourself 30 minutes a day on a machine! You can start slowly by buying a pedometer and walking 6,000 to 10,000 steps a day. One can also find pleasure in an activity such as dance. Cleaning up energetically is also a good exercise.
A poor diet.Our energy level is strongly linked to the food we eat: this can accentuate our fatigue or, on the contrary, put it KO The basis to remember to live our day well: never skip a meal and eat three or four hours. Otherwise, our batteries are flat. “And we’re going to jump on the vending machines, unable to make healthy choices,” explains dietitian Elaine Caponi, of the Laval Institute of Specialized Medicine. It’s as if the body is taking revenge! ” We obviously favor nutritious meals and snacks that contain carbohydrates and proteins. If we eat only one apple, our sugar will go up and down quickly. If you take it with cheese or nuts (protein), it will easily last until the next meal, full of energy. Also, about half an hour before eating, we drink a large glass of water. “Poor digestion depletes our body,” says Dr. Bédard. The water absorbed before a meal will help us digest well. ” What should we avoid? Too much fat, difficult to digest; and too many sugars, which give a false impression of energy since it will run out very quickly. “You can drink coffee, but more than four cups a day is irritating to the body and exhausts it,” says Elaine Caponi. Finally, energy drinks are far from being that. “An energy drink is the equivalent of two or three coffees, and it’s full of sugars,” says Dr. Bédard. water absorbed before a meal will help us digest well. ” What should we avoid? Too much fat, difficult to digest; and too many sugars, which give a false impression of energy since it will run out very quickly. “You can drink coffee, but more than four cups a day is irritating to the body and exhausts it,” says Elaine Caponi. Finally, energy drinks are far from being that. “An energy drink is the equivalent of two or three coffees, and it’s full of sugars,” says Dr. Bédard. water absorbed before a meal will help us digest well. ” What should we avoid? Too much fat, difficult to digest; and too many sugars, which give a false impression of energy since it will run out very quickly. “You can drink coffee, but more than four cups a day is irritating to the body and exhausts it,” says Elaine Caponi. Finally, energy drinks are far from being that. “An energy drink is the equivalent of two or three coffees, and it’s full of sugars,” says Dr. Bédard. energy drinks are far from it. “An energy drink is the equivalent of two or three coffees, and it’s full of sugars,” says Dr. Bédard. energy drinks are far from it. “An energy drink is the equivalent of two or three coffees, and it’s full of sugars,” says Dr. Bédard.
The stress that siphons
Stress is no stranger to the fatigue that can be dragged on for a long time. On the contrary. We want to outdo ourselves in everything: the best friend, the best employee, the best mom, the best spouse, it must be us! This pressure can cause a lot of fatigue. Furthermore, the excess of obligations that we impose on ourselves is also an important factor in our lack of breath. Between the frantic race of the metro-work-dodo and the multiple tasks and social obligations, we forget what we want for us.
“We are in a time of lack of compassion for ourselves,” notes Sylvie Boucher, psychologist and personal development coach. But the biggest problem is disconnecting from yourself. When you are disconnected from yourself, from your desires, you don’t take care of yourself. ” According to the psychologist, we then exceed our limits and we can quickly end up with an overflow of emotions, worries, stress and, as a result, a state on the verge of exhaustion.
“What happens in today’s society is that we maintain a high level of stress daily for the very long term. And the body was not made for that, ”adds Isabelle Patenaude. How does our body react to so much stress? As in any situation deemed dangerous, the adrenal glands produce adrenaline and, a few minutes later, cortisol, two hormones essential for human survival. But the excessive secretion of these hormones ends up exhausting the body, because they draw from the reserves of sugars, therefore energy. “When our adrenal glands experience repeated exposure to stress, we can have more trouble sleeping, have more inflammation and have trouble digesting,” says Isabelle Patenaude.
LESS STRESS = MORE ENERGY!
Here are five ways to release some stress to make room for more vitality.