As we age, our stamina and alertness slowly diminish, but being constantly fatigued is something really different. It’s not normal at any age, and implies some underlying health issues. Tiredness is normal but feeling extremely lifeless and weak is serious and should be addressed. Extreme fatigue is also called myalgic encephalomyelitis.

If you think you have this condition, constantly lack energy and always feel lethargic, be sure to get checked out by a doctor. He/she will check if you have health issues that could cause it or ask you questions about any medication you may be taking. The aim will be to diagnose what the cause of your problem is. What follows is a general look at some of the causes of extreme fatigue and when to be concerned.

Why Am I Constantly Fatigued?

  • Heart disease

Heart disease may mean in some cases that you can’t exercise, and can lead to poor circulation and make you feel constantly fatigued. Did you know that women often present with fatigue rather than chest pain when they have heart problems? Because fatigue is often attributed to other causes, women are at greater risk of dying from heart failure than men.

Constantly Fatigued senior woman with therapist who is helping her with stiff muscles in her arms.
  • Chronic conditions

The causes of chronic fatigue syndrome can be chronic conditions such as diabetes, hypothyroidism, a viral or bacterial infection, and hepatitis.  also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis, are unknown.

  • Depression and anxiety

Mental health issues such as depression and anxiety can be exhausting and definitely cause extreme fatigue as well as other serious conditions.

  • Medication

Medications can also have side effects that make you feel constantly fatigued. Ask your doctor if you can change them.

  • Sleep apnea

The way you breathe when sleeping, or trying to sleep, can be critical. Sleep apnea is a condition that causes shallow breathing or briefly stops normal breathing. When this happens you gasp or choke, which can be very disruptive to your sleep. A poor night’s sleep caused by such problems often leads to weariness throughout the day.

Sleep apnea, if not addressed promptly can also lead to heart disease which is another cause of fatigue.

Other causes

  • Your lifestyle

Lifestyle choices can be the cause of extreme fatigue and lethargy. Spending too much time in front of the TV, eating an unhealthy diet, and not taking enough exercise, is bad. It can lead to depression, which exacerbates the problem.

  • Poor sleep

If you can’t sleep well, you are likely to feel very weak and tired during the day. Poor sleep leads to chronic fatigue, restlessness, and can affect your mental health. Being constantly fatigued can make you feel irritable, stressed, anxious, or moody. This, in turn, can impact your bedtime routine and prevent you from sleeping well.

When should you worry about fatigue?

As explained above, tiredness and extreme lethargy are two very different things, so you should feel the difference. Because the causes of persistent tiredness may be several and complex, be sure to get a professional diagnosis.

Experienced medical staff at Haym Salomon Home for Nursing and Rehabilitation in Brooklyn NY are used to helping patients who feel constantly and extremely fatigued. We offer restorative therapies and medical care to help our patients to recover from this serious condition.

This blog is for general educational purposes only and is no substitute for professional medical advice. For any questions or concerns about your own medical condition, or health issues you need resolving, speak to a qualified doctor.