Fatigue

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Fatigue

Post by reboot on Wed Feb 25, 2015 1:43 pm

Hey nerdloungers,

For almost the past year I have been super exhausted and cannot seem to shake it off. Granted, I work long hours and work can be stressful, but I practice yoga and meditation to counteract that. I jog five days a week and walk at least 45-60 minutes a day to/from work and dog walking. I eat fairly healthfully (e.g. lots of fruits and veggies, nuts, fish, minimal grains). Caffine never much affected me, but I keep it to before 2 pm. I try to sleep 6-8 hours a night and generally succeed (worst I am off will be 5+ hours). I fall asleep easily but do have some nights where I wake up briefly. No snoring, weight issues or nasal congestion, so sleep apnea is unlikely. I do have a touch of SAD but live in AZ and use sun lamps. My ovarian invader might be causing hormone fluctuations, but on testing everything is normal.

What seems to be happening is that I cannot wake feeling refreshed or rested. I tend to drag in a fog most of the day and it is super hard to focus or get my brain in gear, mostly because all I can think is that I want to go back to bed. Weekends when I am not busy I tend to only want to curl up, read and sleep (which sucks because chores and errands and social life suffer).

So any tips, tricks, advice?
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Re: Fatigue

Post by Caffeinated on Wed Feb 25, 2015 2:27 pm

My advice would be to talk to a doctor and get tested for whatever simple things can cause fatigue. I was feeling extra tired all the time and figured there was nothing I could do about it until the baby is born, but then a blood test showed that I'd become mildly anemic. I was told to take an iron supplement, and it's helped me a lot. I'm always amazed at how a little thing like that (my test results were only slightly below where they should have been) can have a big impact on how you feel day to day.
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Re: Fatigue

Post by reboot on Wed Feb 25, 2015 2:35 pm

Caffeinated wrote:My advice would be to talk to a doctor and get tested for whatever simple things can cause fatigue. I was feeling extra tired all the time and figured there was nothing I could do about it until the baby is born, but then a blood test showed that I'd become mildly anemic. I was told to take an iron supplement, and it's helped me a lot. I'm always amazed at how a little thing like that (my test results were only slightly below where they should have been) can have a big impact on how you feel day to day.

Oops, I forgot to mention that part. I have had my iron checked (fine), vitamin D (fine), thyroid (fine), and reproductive hormones (fine) checked.
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Re: Fatigue

Post by Caffeinated on Wed Feb 25, 2015 2:41 pm

reboot wrote:
Caffeinated wrote:My advice would be to talk to a doctor and get tested for whatever simple things can cause fatigue. I was feeling extra tired all the time and figured there was nothing I could do about it until the baby is born, but then a blood test showed that I'd become mildly anemic. I was told to take an iron supplement, and it's helped me a lot. I'm always amazed at how a little thing like that (my test results were only slightly below where they should have been) can have a big impact on how you feel day to day.

Oops, I forgot to mention that part. I have had my iron checked (fine), vitamin D (fine), thyroid (fine), and reproductive hormones (fine) checked.

Well, that eliminates the easy stuff. Hmmmm. I suppose the next thing to look at is things like sleep schedule. Do you have the same bedtime and wake up time every day, as the research seems to suggest that that is important. And is the time that you have for bedtime and wake up time what your body prefers (like night owl versus morning lark kind of thing). The next question might be whether the 6-8 hours a night you're allotted are actually enough for your body at this point in your life. If your body wants an additional hour or half hour or whatever of sleep per night than it gets, it could have been accumulating a sleep debt over a long period of time. If you go to bed at your normal time and don't set any kind of alarm, do you wake up at your normal time or would your body want to sleep longer?
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Re: Fatigue

Post by Conreezy on Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:09 pm

Any pets? If they come and go through the night, they can wake you up and reduce the quality of your sleep.

Also, too much physical activity can make you exhausted as opposed to just sleepy.


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Re: Fatigue

Post by Wondering on Wed Feb 25, 2015 7:17 pm

Hmm, thyroid was going to be my suggestion, so that's out. I do know that a friend of mine had similar problems and his doctor suggested taking a Vitamin B supplement. B-12, I think it was. He said it did help him some when he remembered to take it.

Caffeinated's advice about seeing how long you sleep without the alarm seems good. I know that if I sleep too much, I can be sleepy all day. I need pretty much exactly 7.5 hours of sleep. If I sleep more than that, I'm dragging. (Well, before the baby. All prior sleep patterns are out the window now. Smile)

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Re: Fatigue

Post by reboot on Thu Feb 26, 2015 9:55 am

Without an alarm, I will sleep until sunrise, but it does not matter if I went to bed at 5 am or 10 pm. Once the sun is up, I am up and cannot get back to sleep. In a completely blacked out room I am not sure. I have only ever been in one at hotels for work, which of course requires an alarm. If I had my druthers, I would go to bed a couple of hours after sunset and wake at sunrise, but there is no way for me to do that since I need to work 10-12 hours a day. I could try messing with the length, but man it is hard to go to bed at 8-9 since I am usually just finishing dinner then.

I ran a pet experiment last night (recorded the night) and they are not too active. I think the dog moved around a bit, but the cat starts and stops the night in the same position. I need to record more nights, though.

B12? Huh. I will ask my doctor about it. I do not eat that much red meat (which is the best source of B12 if I remember correctly) because I do not like it, so that might be something...

In the summer, I wonder if the AC keeps me up?
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Re: Fatigue

Post by Enail on Thu Feb 26, 2015 1:12 pm

Is it central or window? I have a window one and used to have a really poor sleep in summer because my head was right in the a/c blast, so that can make a difference! My feet don't mind so much!

Since you might be responding to light, maybe consider blackout curtains? You can try just hanging an extra blanket across the window to see if it makes a difference before you spring for the curtains.

Maybe playing white noise or soothing sounds would help? If you're being disturbed by little sounds here and there, that could cover them, and if there's any tension making you sleep poorly, it can be relaxing.
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Re: Fatigue

Post by Guest on Thu Feb 26, 2015 2:35 pm

Do you do computer stuff in the evening? I've seen research (no statement on reliability) that suggests looking at TV/computer/phone screens messed with serotonin production and makes it hard to get restful sleep. I've been advised to not look at anything backlit after about 9PM.

Now, I don't FOLLOW that advice, so I can't speak to actual effectiveness.

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Re: Fatigue

Post by Wondering on Thu Feb 26, 2015 2:45 pm

I thought of another thing. Reboot, I believe you've said in another thread or two that you've been sharing a bed with a roommate. Having another person sleeping in the same bed with me, romantic or not, really affects my ability to sleep, so perhaps that's part of the issue, too?

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Re: Fatigue

Post by reboot on Thu Feb 26, 2015 2:58 pm

Enail wrote:Is it central or window? I have a window one and used to have a really poor sleep in summer because my head was right in the a/c blast, so that can make a difference! My feet don't mind so much!

Since you might be responding to light, maybe consider blackout curtains? You can try just hanging an extra blanket across the window to see if it makes a difference before you spring for the curtains.

Maybe playing white noise or soothing sounds would help? If you're being disturbed by little sounds here and there, that could cover them, and if there's any tension making you sleep poorly, it can be relaxing.

Like the white noise idea! Blackout curtains are kind of moot though because I am awake an hour or two before sunrise to get the dog jog in and get to work at 7. For weekends, though, it might be handy (although I still need to get up for dog at some point)


ElizaJane wrote:Do you do computer stuff in the evening?  I've seen research (no statement on reliability) that suggests looking at TV/computer/phone screens messed with serotonin production and makes it hard to get restful sleep.  I've been advised to not look at anything backlit after about 9PM.

Now, I don't FOLLOW that advice, so I can't speak to actual effectiveness.

This I am not so great with because I like to read before bed and have been buying ebooks almost exclusively because of space (we have lots of hard copy books, like almost 1000). I could try a challenge-rechallenge and switch to hard copy to see if there is a change. I have been meaning to reread a bunch of stuff anyway.

Wondering wrote:I thought of another thing. Reboot, I believe you've said in another thread or two that you've been sharing a bed with a roommate. Having another person sleeping in the same bed with me, romantic or not, really affects my ability to sleep, so perhaps that's part of the issue, too?

Oh that certainly did not help! We are now separate, though, and have our own rooms for about 2 months and no change. It also started before he moved in, so I do not think that was the cause, but shared bed was definitely a contributor to assiness.

I hope to hell that this is not just one of those things that happen with age :/
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Re: Fatigue

Post by PintsizeBro on Thu Feb 26, 2015 3:42 pm

ElizaJane wrote:Do you do computer stuff in the evening?  I've seen research (no statement on reliability) that suggests looking at TV/computer/phone screens messed with serotonin production and makes it hard to get restful sleep.  I've been advised to not look at anything backlit after about 9PM.

Now, I don't FOLLOW that advice, so I can't speak to actual effectiveness.

It's actually melatonin, but that's an easy mistake to make. The trigger to suppress melatonin production is blue light hitting the retina of the eye (this is why many SAD lamps are blue). At least a portion of the "back light problem" can be mitigated by wearing amber glasses in the evening, as that will block the blue light but still let in red and green light, which allow you to see but don't suppress melatonin the way blue light does.

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