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Culprits of Chronic Fatigue: 5 Common Causes of Extreme & Constant Tiredness

April 27, 2022

Too tired to function?

Everyone feels tired from time to time. But if you are getting enough sleep and your lethargy seems not to drift with a nap, you need to get to the bottom of what’s causing it.


Read on to find out what your constant tiredness is possibly trying to tell you.


What is Chronic Fatigue?

By definition, fatigue is the feeling of constant tiredness or weakness. It is not limited to physical signs, however, and could be mental or a working combination of both.

Fatigue can happen to everyone but lack of energy that goes on for a long time is not normal. 

In most healthy individuals, feelings of tiredness can be quickly relieved by sleeping, resting or eating. Nonetheless, chronic fatigue that persists for six months or longer can be a sign of concern and can cause a vast range of physical and mental symptoms including:

  • extreme tiredness or sleepiness
  • headache
  • drowsiness
  • muscle weakness
  • slowed reflexes
  • unrefreshing sleep
  • impaired judgment
  • irritability
  • appetite loss
  • reduced immune system function
  • blurry vision
  • memory problems
  • difficulty concentrating
  • hallucinations
  • low motivation


Common Causes of Chronic Fatigue


A wide range of causes can trigger chronic fatigue and they can work in combination. Here are 5 of the potential reasons for your persistent and unrelenting exhaustion.


1. Post-Viral Syndrome

The body may experience lack of energy and tiredness after fighting an infection. However, some people may experience prolonged symptoms of weakness even after the infection has gone. This is called post-viral fatigue or post-viral syndrome.

Chronic fatigue that is triggered by this condition have their origins in the infection. Some experts believe that it may be due to the lingering effects of the virus as the body continues to clear it out.


2. Hormonal Imbalance

Fatigue is one of the most prevalent symptoms of hormonal imbalance. It is known that abnormal levels of hormones particularly produced in the hypothalamus, pituitary and adrenal glands caused chronic tiredness. Anyhow, ongoing research is still investigating its exact mechanism.


3. Impaired Immune System

Researchers report that a malfunctioning immune system may result in chronic fatigue. 

In response to an infection that has passed, the immune system may fail to slow down and continue to pump out large amounts of cytokines. This cytokine surge and dysregulation induces a wide array of bodily changes of which includes chronic fatigue.


4. Sedentary Lifestyle

Leading a sedentary lifestyle can increase your risk of developing chronic fatigue.
Not getting enough exercise and physical activity causes deconditioning of the body’s musculoskeletal and cardiovascular systems. 

In contrast, exercise has been shown to help reverse fatigue associated with all kinds of medical conditions, from cancer to autoimmune diseases to depression.


5. Burnout

While burnout and chronic fatigue are generally considered distinct, they often come together especially in working adults. This 24/7 culture can make it difficult for many of us to rest with zero to little chance to recharge. As a result, our mind and bodies constantly run dangerously low resulting in further psychological and physical complications.


It is difficult to thrive and enjoy the things you love when you are persistently accompanied with lack of energy and exhaustion. If you feel like your symptoms are getting out of hand, consult your doctor for proper diagnosis and intervention. 

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