Do you feel like you’re always tired? Do you wake up feeling exhausted? If your energy level seems to stay at a constant low, it might be time to give us a call.
What is Fatigue?
While tiredness comes and goes, fatigue is persistent and limiting. Tiredness is often due to physical exhaustion, sleeplessness, or illness while fatigue usually seems unexplainable and lingering.
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Symptoms of Fatigue
Symptoms of fatigue are a lack of energy and motivation and a constant tiredness and weakness. Fatigue can also be a symptom in and of itself for an underlying disease.
Causes of Fatigue
Sleep, diet, and exercise are the three main causes of fatigue. We encourage our patients to get a consistent 7-9 hours of sleep each night, exercise regularly, and eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, and lean protein.
If you’re experiencing fatigue despite a healthy lifestyle, there may be health reasons causing your lack of energy. Chronic kidney disease, liver disease, lung disease (COPD), allergic rhinitis, anemia, depression, fibromyalgia, a bacterial or viral infection, and other health conditions could be responsible for your fatigue. If this is the case, there are ways to treat and manage your ongoing exhaustion.
Possible Medical Causes of Your Fatigue
When you feel sluggish and slow despite a healthy sleep, diet, and exercise schedule, it’s probably time to have us check for medical causes. Causes can range from metabolic/endocrine to infectious or cardiac and pulmonary, from a reaction to medications or vitamin deficiencies to psychiatric or sleep problems. Below are some of the common causes of fatigue that we see in our office every day.
Your thyroid makes a hormone that helps control how you use your energy. Underactive thyroids cause fatigue. We test your blood to find out if your thyroid hormone is responsible for your fatigue.
Adrenal insufficiency, also known as adrenal fatigue or Addison’s disease, is an autoimmune disorder in which there’s a shortage of the hormone adrenocorticotropin (ACTH) that stimulates the adrenal glands to produce cortisol. Common symptoms include fatigue and weakness. If your diagnosis is adrenal fatigue, we prescribe a hormone replacement which will get your body back in working order and lead to more energy and less fatigue.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), also called myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) and systemic exertional intolerance disease (SEID), is a disorder characterized by an extreme amount of fatigue that lasts for many months. Since this disease can be complicated and triggered by a combination of issues, we use a variety of tests to confirm your diagnosis and rule out other possibilities.
Fatigue is the number one symptom of diabetes, a condition in which your body uses energy to cope with constantly changing blood sugar levels. We rule out diabetes when testing to determine the cause of your fatigue.
When your heart isn’t pumping at the rate it should, your body can feel even more fatigued when you exercise. We test of congestive heart failure as we create a treatment plan for managing your fatigue.
We use a simple blood test to check the iron levels in your blood. If you’re suffering from anemia, a disorder in which your blood has a difficult time moving oxygen around your body, you can get brain fog and feel exceptionally tired and dizzy when you stand up.
This is another disorder where there’s a shortage of oxygen in your body, and it also prevents you from getting adequate sleep. We may recommend you use a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine to help keep your airways open while you sleep.
It’s common for women going through menopause to sleep fitfully because of the change in their hormones. Not sleeping well at night leads to sleepy days. We can help you get ahold of your hormonal changes with supplements and medications.
When a person is depressed, energy levels are low because there’s a shortage of serotonin which helps regulate your body clock. You may have trouble sleeping because your body is out of whack. We will direct you to the appropriate therapy and medications if we determine you’re dealing with depression.
How to Deal with Fatigue
If you’re dealing with fatigue, schedule an appointment with us, so we can make a diagnosis and assess your symptoms. During your visit, we gather a detailed history of your condition and conduct a series of tests to determine the cause of your fatigue and design a treatment plan unique to your situation. We may prescribe the proper medications to reduce symptoms, depending on the cause of your fatigue.
When to See an Endocrinologist
When you feel wiped out day after day despite eating, sleeping, and exercising well, it’s time to come in for a consultation with one of our fatigue experts. We are meticulous about evaluating every aspect of the whole person and how the body is functioning. As leaders in our field, we are committed to providing you with a treatment that will get to the heart of the matter and end your persistent and excessive fatigue once and for all. We work closely with your physicians to ensure comprehensive care.