Fatigue is generally defined as a feeling of lack of energy and motivation that can be physical, mental or both. Fatigue is not the same as drowsiness, but the desire to sleep may accompany fatigue. Apathy is a feeling of indifference that may accompany fatigue or exist independently. In addition, individuals often describe fatigue using a variety of terms including weary, tired, exhausted, malaise, listless, lack of energy and feeling run down.
Fatigue is common. About 20% of Americans claim to have fatigue intense enough to interfere with living a normal life. A physical cause has been estimated to be responsible 20% to 60% of the time, while emotional or mental causes comprise the other 40% to 80% of cases of fatigue.
The potential causes of fatigue are numerous. The majority of diseases known to man often list fatigue or malaise as possible associated symptoms. This is complicated by the fact that fatigue can occur in normal healthy individuals as a normal response to physical and mental exertion. However, normal fatigue may begin to become abnormal if it becomes chronic, extreme or prolonged fatigue; usually this occurs when a person experiences chronic or prolonged physical or mental exertion. For example, unusually hard physical or mental exertion for one day can result in normal fatigue that may last about a day or sometimes more, depending on the exertion level, while daily unusually hard physical or mental exertion may result in prolonged fatigue (usually greater than 24 to 48 hours). This latter situation may develop into abnormal fatigue.
Fatigue, either mental or physical, is a symptom that usually has some underlying cause. Fatigue may be described by people in different ways, and may include some combination of the following (both mental and physical):
lack of energy,
constantly tired or exhausted,
lack of motivation,
difficulty concentrating, and/or
difficulty starting and completing tasks.
Other symptoms such as fainting or loss of consciousness (syncope), near-syncope, rapid heartbeat (palpitations), dizziness or vertigo may also be described as part of the fatigue experienced by the affected individual. The presence of these symptoms may actually help lead a health care practitioner to discover the underlying cause(s) of the fatigue.
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Fatigue Medical Treatment
Medical treatment of fatigue depends on the treatment of its underlying cause(s). 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,
recommendations for dietary changes and a sensible exercise program.
Natural Herbal Remedies
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