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Causes of Fatigue and Sleepiness and How to Fight Them

by Rishabh

Regular and persistent fatigue and sleepiness is one of the most common forms of the problems that people face today. Either arising as a lifestyle disorder or due to a host of many other reasons, fatigue or sleepiness has made a home in the lives of many people.


Although seemingly harmless, the affliction nevertheless can have severe consequences including deflated efficiency, loss of concentration and general lack of enjoyment of life. In this blog, we list out major causes of fatigue and sleepiness and how to fight them.

It is really important to identify these cause in the your life and find a suitable remedy so that you can relish your life to the full and always stay charged and ready to give the best shot to your professional and personal life.

Cause No. 1: Not Enough Sleep

Little sleep can have a major effect on your overall health and concentration and can be a major contributor to fatigue and sleepiness. According to experts, adults should get seven to eight hours of sleep every night.

Remedy: Include sleep as an important priority in your schedule. Banish cell phones, laptops and television, at least an hour before you lay down for sleep. Practice yoga and meditation. However, if you still have problems, then consult a doctor to find if you have a sleep disorder.

Cause No. 2: Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea can adversely affect the quality of your sleep. Even though one thinks that he/she may be getting enough sleep, the brief interruptions in breathing can cause problems in the overall rest, the body or the mind may be getting.

Remedy: Even after spending eight hours in bed, you may be sleep deprived. Make sure to reduce weight if you are overweight. Quit smoking if you are a regular smoker. Your doctor may order a sleep study to check for the real cause.

Also if the problem is aggravated, you may need a CPAP device to keep the airway passages open as you sleep.

Read more on Recognizing and Treating Sleep Apnea ]

Cause No. 3: Not Enough Food

That eating little can cause fatigue is common knowledge, but eating wrong also contributes to causing sleepiness and tiredness. It is important to note that a balanced diet helps you to keep your blood sugar to a normal level and keep you away from the sluggish feeling when the blood sugar drops.

Remedy: Do not skip breakfast and try to include complex carbs and proteins in your diet. For example, meals like eggs with whole grain toast is a wonderful fare that keeps you charged with sustained energy throughout the day.

Cause No. 4: Anemia

Anemia is one of the most important causes of fatigue and sleepiness in women. Menstrual blood loss, causing iron deficiency is a major reason. The loss of red blood cells, which carry oxygen to the tissue and organs is a source of causing anemia in people.

Remedy: Take up iron supplements and eat iron rich foods such as liver, shell fish, beans, lean meat and enriched cereals can help in fighting anemia.

Cause No. 5: Depression

Depression is also a significant cause of fatigue. In fact many people still regard it only as an emotional disorder but its symptoms can include headaches, loss of appetite and fatigue.

If you see yourself tired and emotionally drained for most of the time, then see your doctor as the depression may be a cause for it.

Remedy: With the growing urban lifestyle, depression is taking an increasing number of people in its grip. Depression is curable and can be treated with counselling and/or medication. Thus, check the symptoms in you and see a psychiatrist if needed.

Cause No. 6: Hypothyroidism

The thyroid gland is one of the most important glands, located at the base of the neck. The function of thyroid is to control the metabolism, which is the speed at which the food is converted into energy. When there is a problem with the gland then metabolism may function slowly and one may feel sluggish and put on weight.

Remedy: If you are tested low for the thyroid hormones, then synthetic hormones can help bring up the speed of metabolism.

Cause No. 7: Caffeine Overload

Caffeine is identified as the product that enhances concentration and alertness. However, too much of caffeine increases the heart rate, destabilizes the blood pressure and cause jitteriness. In fact, research has determined that too much of caffeine can cause tiredness or fatigue in some people.

Remedy: Make an endeavor to gradually cut down on coffee, chocolate, tea and soft drinks or any other products and medications that contain caffeine. On the other hand, cutting back on caffeine suddenly can again cause withdrawal symptoms and more fatigue.

Cause No. 8: Hidden UTI

Urinary Tract Infection is usually associated with the symptoms like burning pain and a sense of urgency to release. However, it is not always that UTI appears itself with such symptoms. In few cases, fatigue is the only symptom that is visible. If this is the case then a simple urine test will confirm the presence of Urinary Tract Infection.

Remedy: If you have UTI, then antibiotics is a good cure. Any UTI related fatigue will usually vanish within a week.

Cause No. 9: Diabetes

Diabetes is one of the major causes of fatigue, sleepiness or exhaustion. In diabetes, there is usually more than normal level of sugar in the bloodstream instead of entering cells, where it would have been converted into energy.

As a result, a person with diabetes gets exhausted very soon even though more than enough food is present in the blood. If you complain of persistent and unexplained fatigue, then get yourself tested for diabetes to confirm.

Remedy: If the diabetes is caused by lifestyle disorder, then remedy should include changes in the lifestyle. In addition to this, yoga, exercise, insulin therapy as well as medications help to process the body sugar and keep diabetes in check.

Cause No. 10: Dehydration

The fatigue that you regularly experience could be a result of dehydration. No matter whether you have a desk job or a work that requires physical effort, your body need water to keep the metabolism going and stay cool. If you feel thirsty for most part then understand that you are already facing dehydration.

Remedy: Keep yourself well hydrated by drinking water throughout the day at short intervals. Make sure your urine is light colored. Have at least two cups of water, an hour before any physical activity. Keep sipping little throughout the work and then drink at least two cups after the work out. This will ensure proper amount of water in the body.

Cause No. 11: Heart Disease

If you get tired quickly with even little everyday activities like weeding the yard or cleaning the house then it may point to the fact that your heart may not be performing its job up to the level. If finishing those tasks, which were once easy for you, becomes difficult then it’s time to consult your doctor for heart diseases.

Remedy: Medications, therapy or lifestyle changes may help you come over the affliction. In more serious cases, consult your doctor for any additional and important procedures.

[ Also read: Tips to Lower Down the Risk of Heart Disease ]

Cause No. 12: Shift Work Sleep Disorder

Rotating shifts can play a toll on your body and disrupt your internal clock. Just as the body begin to adjust for a particular schedule, the work-shift changes resulting in you feeling tired and sleepy when you really need to be awake. Alternatingly, you may also have trouble sleeping during the day as well.

Remedy: If you need to sleep during the day, then limit your exposure to the sunlight when you need to rest. Make sure your room is dark and is quiet and cool. If you still have any problem sleeping, then don’t hesitate to take the help of a doctor. Supplements and medications can help a lot in balancing out your body clock.

Cause No. 13: Food Allergies

Sometimes hidden food allergies can also make a person tired and sleepy. Check if your fatigue intensifies after meals. If this is the case, then it is possible that you may have a mild intolerance to something you are eating. Even if it does not makes you itch or cause hives, fatigue can too cane indicate food allergy.

Remedy: Try replacing your food and see if your fatigue improves. Again you can ask your doctor to conduct an allergy test on you and see which food is causing the allergy.

Cause No. 14: CFS and Fibromyalgia

If your fatigue does not go away and is so serious that you fail to manage even day to day activities then, you may be suffering from fatigue syndrome or fibromyalgia. Both the afflictions can have many symptoms but continuous tiredness or exhaustion is the common sign of both.

Remedy: There is no quick fix to CFS or fibromyalgia, however, patients will find changing their daily schedule, learning better sleeping habits and undertaking a gentle exercise programs like yoga to help and serve their healing well.

Remedy for Mild Fatigue

If you find that your fatigue is not linked to any medical condition then mild exercise is the best recourse you can take. Exercise is a great answer to enhance your metabolism and improve blood circulation which can give a great energy and efficiency boost to normal adults working in modern environments.

For example, exercises as mild as doing cycling on a stationary bike for 20-25 minutes is enough to fight fatigue and augment your performance and productivity.

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10 Tips for Staying Healthy in Summer
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Brain Foods That Help You Concentrate
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