What is fatigue? Basically it is a physiological condition linked to a strong sense of fatigue. Different from fatigue as it is unrelated to the consequences of physical or mental activity, let’s see together the main causes and possible remedies for the well-being of our body.
The arrival of October can bring with it, beyond the change of season, a real sense of weakness. It is not uncommon that in this period, states of stress and widespread fatigue can occur that not even sleep and rest are able to resolve. It can also happen that our difficulty in concentrating is completely disconnected from the commitments that keep our days busy. Not being able to carry out all those commitments that we normally carry out can be really frustrating… What do we suffer from? And what is it asthenia?
It is important to delve into the matter and understand what is meant by this disorder. In fact, there are many definitions that are given to this physiological phenomenon and which very often turn out to be incorrect.
We can say that asthenia can be represented precisely as a lack of strength but for this reason it can be connected to the most disparate symptoms and to the most diverse health conditions. Asthenia is in fact present as a symptom in many relevant pathologies but can also be linked to conditions of trivial disorders such as those of the change of season.
Let us therefore try to investigate the matter together and find information related to our condition.
What is fatigue?
There is a clinical definition for this disorder. In fact, it is possible to describe asthenia as a condition of incapacity characterized by the loss of strength. This is a different status than fatigue, this in fact comes as a consequence of an activity that requires effort and which leads to a natural consumption of energy. Asthenia, on the other hand, is characterized by fatigue that is not directly connected to the performance of a specific activity. We can therefore say that it is not a real disease but rather a possible alarm signal for various diseases of which it represents a symptom.
There are two different types of asthenia in the medical literature: a muscular one and a nervous one.
Myasthenia, muscular asthenia, is a form of general weakness involving a progressive decrease in strength; otherwise neurasthenia, of the nervous type, arises due to disorders of the nervous system. The latter, associated with states of stress, is instead linked to possible disorders of the psyche such as bipolar. Very often there are possible correlations between the two types of disorder. In fact, it is possible that following prolonged periods of physical weakness correspond to nervous breakdowns.
The causes: why does asthenia come?
It is important to clarify. We must first of all verify that the cause is indeed asthenia. In fact, very often it happens to confuse the latter with states of fatigue, due to misleading information on the subject.
If we know that we are late at night or that we face more commitments than usual during our day, it is likely that we are faced with simple fatigue. Adequate rest is the right solution to return to life as always!
The situation is different if the feeling of lack of strength is not due to any related event. Fatigue can affect the whole organism but also only specific areas if of a muscular nature. Based on the different types of sensation, one can trace one’s condition to a different cause. For example, states of asthenia are also trivially correlated to seasonal influences. The sensation of widespread tiredness that is experienced with fever is in fact useful for understanding the nature of the characteristics of asthenia.
However, it is possible that other factors are hidden behind this disorder:
- An incorrect diet: the insufficiency of adequate macronutrients can in fact lead to cases of general weakness. This is the case of the deficiency of vitamins of group B or of magnesium and potassium, essential for our body
- Side effects in the use of some drugs: A high dosage of specific medicines can lead to chronic asthenic conditions among patients.
- Pregnancy: an example is represented by the anomaly of some blood values such as steroids, capable of creating major cases of weakness.
- Premenstrual syndrome
- Psychological and / or psychiatric disorders: some pathologies affecting the sphere of mental health can lead to these conditions of loss of energy
- Diseases of various types (infectious, neurological and cardiorespiratory) with widely debilitating effects
- Thyroid dysfunctions (Hashimoto’s disease and hypothyroidism)
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Chron’s disease
- Respiratory allergies
- Cases of infection, both viral and chronic
- Renal failure and adrenal hypofunction (Addison’s disease)
- Cases of immunodeficiency (e.g. Sjögren’s syndrome)
- Presence of a tumor: this is undoubtedly one of the most critical cases, which is why asthenia represents an alarm to be kept under control.
Remedies and advice against asthenia
We have seen together how asthenia does not fully represent a disease and must therefore be addressed in a different way. In fact, it is not possible to act on this condition as such but rather it is necessary to resolve the cause that is at its origin. The possible remedies for asthenia concern a correct analysis of one’s condition that comes from a correct study of the symptoms that arise.
It is important to first evaluate our lifestyle. Once we have ruled out that our problem concerns the hours of sleep and therefore it is fatigue, we should evaluate whether our diet is correct.
An incomplete or unbalanced diet can in fact be among the major causes of our asthenia and it is therefore necessary to run for cover. It is important to provide all the nutrients necessary for proper metabolic functioning with daily nutrition. In some cases we can resort to specific supplements, except for a specific consultation with our general practitioner.
When this disorder is related to pregnancy, it is good to consult your gynecologist for more information, as well as prolonged cases of asthenia during premenstrual syndromes should be investigated.
It is possible that asthenia is also related to an alteration in our body’s production of melatonin. These are frequent disturbances in the period of change of seasons, where the cycles of light and dark also change. In this case, regularizing our hours of rest is a concrete help to recover energy.
If, on the other hand, we suspect that our asthenia is due to the intake of certain drugs, we can consult the corresponding information leaflets and, once the possible side effect has been detected, ask for a specialist consultation.
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When you need to go to your doctor
There are several cases of asthenia for which it is necessary to resort to the figure of the doctor. In fact, we have seen how in some cases it may be necessary to take supplements, it is important to avoid the self-prescription of these. Although, in fact, most of the supplements are sold without a prescription; it is essential to have a specialist opinion on their correct intake. Similarly, we should consult a doctor if we suspect that our asthenia is related to taking a specific drug or treatment. In fact, it is the doctor’s task to solve therapeutic problems by choosing a pharmacological alternative suitable for solving the patient’s chronic disorder.
As we have seen, asthenia can also be related to a wide range of more or less serious diseases for patients. It is therefore essential to keep this symptom under control and discuss it with our general practitioner to carry out further investigations if necessary.
It is essential to monitor the situation to be able to diagnose any pathologies quickly and effectively. Cases of prolonged asthenia can in fact be alarm bells for our health. For this we should not underestimate the importance of a clinical consultation or overlook the presence of these symptoms in case we are affected.
Our body speaks to us, and it is therefore important to try to listen to its language to find our well-being.