Monday, July 27, 2015

Why You Are So Extremely Tired All The Time: Causes for Women, Men & Teens

Sick and tired of feeling sick and tired?      
Sleeping Pill Mug/T-Shirt on Zazzle

I was. I thought I was dying; I really did. I'll share what 'fixed' me in this article.

I'm not one of those creepy salespeople peddling a weird cure-all (panacea) for weight loss, divorce makeovers, etc. I had the terrible problem of extreme lethargy and being a writer, it's only natural I post my trials and what worked for me.

UPDATE/NOTE: If you're a woman over 35 and have extreme tiredness, scroll down a bit.

While I usually write about home decor, my exhaustion was depressing, my lethargy only getting worse. I spent a week in bed from extreme exhaustion, feeling weak, no energy to leave the house, and a headache (I write about it at the end of this article if you have time to read it).

So, I went on a rampage to find answers and I've included several very common causes you may feel exhausted--even after getting a lot of sleep--along with some viable solutions that may work for you. The answers may be surprising, as they may seem too simple in this stressful, complex world we live in.

Since I had such a terrible time of exhaustion every day, and now that I'm much better, I felt compelled to share the common solutions to being so extremely tired and weak all the time (also know as lethargy; being lethargic or feeling lethargic). I'll go from simple to complex and try to stay brief:

#1 ~ Feeling Tired All Day with (or w/o) Headache: Women, Men & Teens


Reason/Cause: Dehydration 

DO THIS RIGHT NOW: Drink (don't gulp) plain water as you read the rest of my article. 





Always Feeling Tired/Headache/Pain
75% of Us are Chronically Dehydrated

Despite your complaints, you should be drinking water as you read my article because water is life; it's vital. If you just feel a bit tired all day and wake up tired, have headaches, and body/muscle/joint aches, you may not be taking in enough plain ol' water; 75% of us don't.

If you don't drink enough water every single day (did I say every single day?), you're chronically dehydrated, in pain, and tired all the time. And you'll wake up tired. And your joints, muscles and bones will ache. and you may have a headache. [enter your own scary visual here].

If you suffer any disease or pain of any kind, or have a wound, you especially must drink your water. Every day. Like right now.

Usually, drinking two cups of water over the course of thirty minutes will have you feeling more energized in about thirty minutes. Then, you must follow up with more. The slightest tidbit of water deficiency is very hard on your body and any wounds trying to heal. Imagine what can happen after days with not enough water. Don't drink too much, though. Please 'drink responsibly' and don't add to the county landfill with those plastic, throw-away water bottles. Invest in a refillable water bottle like this, with measurement lines to help you keep up with your water intake. You'll save money, too. For now, any cup and tap water will do. You do not need expensive water! Are you drinking the water, yet?

Chronic fatigue with headaches and/or other muscle weakness and even arthritis pains can be eased with adequate water intake. I know this personally; I have RA. Are you drinking your water, yet?



#2 ~ Feeling Weak & Very Tired All Day and Waking Up Tired with Moodiness/Depression: Men, Women, Teens and  Kids


Tired/Exhausted/Weak/Wake Up Tired Solution: Vitamin D3

Reason/Cause: Vitamin D Deficiency 


Did you know the majority of the U.S. population is deficient in vitamin D? 

I know that sounds like some sleazy magazine ad, but if you look around any room, 70% of the people in it are deficient, an astounding 95% if they're seniors. 

We're lacking in Vitamin D because we slather on the sunscreen (our body makes its own vitamin D from sun exposure), don't get 15 minutes of natural sunlight PER day, and stay inside where we don't even get indirect natural sun (light through windows doesn't 'count').

You'll be mighty tired and depressed, may have muscle weakness, have flaky skin issues, bone and joint pain, and a host of awful symptoms I could prattle on about.
The vitamin D-3 I show here, is the most cost-effective and very easy to swallow. I was deficient and take two every day, just to maintain a normal level. For under $10, you really should consider vitamin D-3. 

NOTE: A simple blood test can reveal your D level. Even IF you take in enough sun and eat well, you may have inherited an inability to absorb vitamin D and need prescription levels.




#3 ~ Feeling EXTREME Fatigue, Weak & Very Tired All Day, Waking Up Tired with Moodiness/Depression: Men, Women, Teens and  Kids

Reason/Cause: Vitamin B12 Deficiency


Extreme Exhaustion/Mood/Anxiety/Sleep
You're going to want to run out right now and buy these sub lingual vitamin B12 tablets when I tell you that too little vitamin B-12 can cause your life to spiral into a chronic state of doom and gloom. Unlike some other vitamins, you cannot, cannot become toxic by taking large doses of B12. The only way to get this vitamin into your body is through animal products and supplements. 

The trouble with B12 is, it stores in your liver for TWO years, and a blood test might show you have great levels but you're still low, fatigued x10, mood swings out the ying-yang (speaking from my experiences), have tingling, muscle pain, sleep problems and extreme exhaustion upon waking. A telltale sign is you take deep sighs. A lot.

Lack of vitamin B12 had me thinking I was dying until I dosed myself three times a day, allowing two 1000 mcg. lozenges to dissolve under my tongue. In a week, I thought I took a crazy miracle pill and I can't say whether you'll feel the same improvement, but taking B12 can't hurt you and it's cheap, too. You should take the Methylcobalamin form, like this one for best results. But if you don't want to order it online, you can get a different brand name at any drugstore; just be sure it's the methylcobalamin form of B-12. Often, grocery and drug stores have these vitamins on sale. Methylcobalamin B12 is premium, as it's best absorbed and works fast. It took one week for me to feel loads better and wake up feeling like I actually slept; all this after going to the doctor (I talk more about this at the end of my article) and all those tests.


Are you still drinking your water? You should drink two cups (16 oz.) upon waking; yes, that's before your coffee or tea.


My UPDATE for Women Age 35 & Over

I felt so much better with the vitamins, but something happened nearly a year later, and I thought my fatigue returned. So, I traipsed back to my doctor for the year's blood test and checkup. This fatigue was beyond debilitating, and all I could do was lay in the bed. I wasn't brain-tired, like needing a nap. I'd had plenty of sleep even though I was awakened every two hours with hot flashes, and when I awoke, I was so low in spirit--literally overnight. Sometimes, I would feel a little better, only to go right back to my bed; all that within mere hours. 

Then, I would get my energy back for a month or two, and BAM! I'd go back to the extreme fatigue, night sweats, aches, and extreme sadness (sadness that came and went throughout the day) along with moodiness: happy one day, sad the next. Then came mood swings on a seemingly hourly basis.

 I found out a few things networking with women my age and above, and finally found I had Adrenal Fatigue and was experiencing an Adrenal Crash! I fought SO hard to stay away from hormone-replacement therapy (HRT), but for me, I needed to return to some semblance of normalcy, some life and spirit I once knew.

While you might want to try natural treatments, if your symptoms are as horrific as mine, I suggest talking to your  doctor about monitoring your hormone levels and adrenal gland function. You may be among the women like me who have the ongoing, life-altering chronic fatigue. I have a physician that listens. I took the hormones and in and hour, I felt normal again. I expected a six-week recovery, but for me, the HRT keeps my body free of the craziness; it's mine again.

I found this website to be very good for information: Top 10 Adrenal Fatigue Facts Made Easy by Dr.Michael Lam 


#4 ~ Feeling Weak Tired/Exhausted All Day and Waking Up Tired: Women & Teens and ADHD Treatment

Reason/Cause: Anemia/Iron Deficiency 


No Energy/Waking Up Tired/Short of Breath/Anemia
I know I've trumped up the vitamin deficiencies and the issues that arise from them, but I was one to brush off any vitamin 'treatments' and I paid for it with horrific exhaustion, crazy sleep patterns, weakness and loss of my quality of life. Please take these vitamins seriously; any deficiency over time can really put your body in a bad way.

If your iron is low, you might wake up feeling drained, have muscle weakness, shortness of breath, exhaustion and a myriad of other symptoms. BUT you MUST have your iron level tested before starting on an iron supplement! 

Too much iron can kill you.

 Far too little iron may necessitate a blood transfusion at a hospital. I know; I had to have two units of blood several years ago. Iron supplements and foods high in iron may cause a temporary arthritic flareup if you have RA.

Make sure your iron supplement is gentle on the stomach like this one for less than $3 a bottle.

NOTE: Don't try to guess that your iron is low. You must have a healthcare professional give you a simple blood test. If you take Iron supplements and don't need them, your levels can get into the toxic range. Always check any multi-vitamin for its iron. Ask your doctor before starting on any iron.



You'll need a checkup and what's called a CBC or Complete Blood Count to check your overall health. The CBC is a simple blood test where your doctor will order several vials of blood taken from ONE needle stick. You really should go to your healthcare provider for a complete checkup if you're feeling exhausted every day, wake up tired or feel extremely weak and/or tired all the time.

Here's the list of possibilities that seeing your doctor can quickly check for (it takes about two days to get the results, though) via blood work and an EKG (you'll get immediate results for EKGs). My appointment took about an hour for the consultation (talking to the doctor or physician's assistant/PA), the blood work, blood pressure, temperature, pulse oximeter (checks the oxygen in your blood; no needle)  and the EKG (a VERY quick and painless heart test).


  • Thyroid Function
  • Blood/Glucose Level
  • Vitamin D Level*
  • Cholesterol Levels
  • Iron/Anemia
  • Kidney & Liver Function
  • Infection
  • Leukemia
  • Hormone Levels*



*You may need to ask for the Vitamin D and Hormone level blood tests.

IMPORTANT NOTES: Don't play around with waiting for a doctor appointment if you have chest pain--of ANY kind--have shortness of breath (for instance, you get up from a chair, or take several steps, and you're huffing and puffing, or just huffing, or just puffing), have pain and/or tingling down your left arm, high blood pressure, bluish coloration in skin, fingernail beds and/or lips. Call 911.

Don't play.

Even if you don't have health insurance, or any money to pay, in most states, private/for-profit hospitals must take you in at ANY Emergency Room for suspected heart attack symptoms. It's not a free visit, but they can't turn you away in most states because you can't pay-up at the door. Go directly to your NEAREST facility or call 911. Personally, I would call 911. The MEDICS are trained and have the equipment to monitor and stabilize you for transport if need be. Don't be too scared; just do it!


If you can safely access a blood pressure machine in a store right now, do it.


MY STORY



I thought I was dying; I really did. I'd been extra, extra exhausted for the past three days and prior to that latest wave of exhaustion, I'd been waking up tired. Everyday, same thing: wake up, blink my way into the morning light thinking, 'yes, it's time to wake up but I'm totally weak, totally drained.'


I asked my doctor for all the blood tests she could order without me passing out from blood loss (I was serious). To take all that blood, they first had to take my blood sugar, a little prick to the finger. It was fine.

The blood work was normal--all of it. Kidneys. Liver. The EKG they performed that day was normal. I was fine. Normal? NORMAL and FINE?!

How could I be FINE when I feel so extremely tired all day, every day and wake up drained?

I thought I must have a serious disease--nobody could live and feel this bad. I made a doctor appointment after being extremely weak for those three days. All I'd been able to do was lay in bed and use the bathroom.

That was it.

The doctor worked me in, and my son brought me to her office where I remained slumped in my chair with my head on the armrest. No, I'm not a drama queen or diva; I was just desperate for help that day and had no energy. None. Nada. Zilch. Goose-egg zero.

It wasn't a pretty sight and neither was I.

I had a full workup, including an EKG, but while I waited to feel better those terrible three days before, I asked my other son to get me some B-12. I also started back on the Vitamin D-3 I had abandoned a while ago because I thought I was 'fine.' I also quit coffee and tea and drank lots of water. As I mentioned, in one week I felt like living--really living.

Who could have guessed?

 I am NOT a healthcare professional. I believe strongly in yearly checkups by a qualified physician to monitor and maintain health.











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