Fatigue is different from drowsiness, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Drowsiness is feeling the need to sleep, but fatigue is a lack of energy and motivation. It can be a normal and important response to chronic shortage of sleep, but also to emotional stress, hormonal changes and diseases.
When tiredness is not relieved by enough shuteye, good nutrition, or a low-stress environment, it should be evaluated by a health professional. They will check for anemia (when the body doesn’t have enough healthy red blood cells) or under-active thyroid, both of which can cause a series of other chronic side effects harming your body.
Don’t be quick to blame exhaustion on chaotic daily lives and chronic lack of sleep. It is a generic and vague symptom that the body is using to signal that you need to take better care of it. Make small changes in your schedule to observe any difference in how you feel – this is one of the best ways to identify the culprit if medical tests have ruled out an illness.
If you know you’re doing everything right – not going to bed too late, sleeping for 7-8 hours a night, keeping your bedroom dark and cool, don’t stare at your phone or TV in bed – but still wake up tired and don’t feel any more energetic throughout the day, you may be suffering from one of the following conditions.
The only thing worse than being exhausted is feeling that way all the time.