The words ‘I’m exhausted’ or ‘I’m just so tired’ are becoming more and more common in today’s society. But why are we all so tired these days and will a good night’s sleep actually help? Tiredness is defined as a “state of wishing for sleep or rest” and can be broken down in to four main categories.
Emotional or Psychological tiredness: This tiredness is one you may experience after a particularly stressful event such as declining health of a family member, separation of a partner or completing your HSC. This tiredness doesn’t go away after a good night’s sleep and often won’t resolve until the underlining reason for the stress is resolved.
Physical tiredness: This can be due to not enough sleep, a strenuous workout or a physically demanding job. A little sleep and a few rest days will normally clear this type of tiredness up completely. Remember not to overdo a workout, especially if you are experiencing persisting tiredness, as this is when accidents and injuries occur. Try low impact activities like yin yoga or gentle walks instead.
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Tiredness due to illness or a medical condition: Certain conditions just as low thyroid function or anaemia can result in a feeling of chronic tiredness. Don’t forget medications used to treat conditions can also worsen tiredness, for example pain medication, chemotherapy or mental health medications. If you are experiencing excessive tiredness since commencing a new medication - talk to your GP. Finally, holding on to extra weight can worsen tiredness.
Mental Tiredness: You might experience this after completing a mentally challenging task, this could be an assessment for school or a report for work.
How to fix it:
- Take small breaks away from bright light and noise of the office.
- Be realistic: you cannot be productive 100 per cent of the time. Identify when you are most productive and allocate important tasks for then.
- Give yourself permission to relax, when you leave the office.