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Exhaustion Symptoms and Their Causes

Are you very tired, or are you truly exhausted?  These exhaustion symptoms will help you to determine whether what you’re feeling goes beyond being really tired, and below are listed some common causes that lead to exhaustion.

Exhaustion Symptoms

You’re unable to point to one specific reason for your tiredness

Life feels like a mountain you are unable to climb.  

Stimulants are what get you through the day.

Eating is a chore because you have no energy to prepare a meal.

You have difficulty concentrating and staying focused.

When you have a cold, sore throat, or other minor illness, it takes a long while for your body to overcome it.

Having fun has become a chore.

You have no energy for sex or intimacy

Your sleep cycles are all out of whack.

You have dizzy spells.

Do you suffer from at least one of the above exhaustion symptoms?  Maybe they change, but 1 or more all typically always present?

If so, you can pretty well conclude that what you’re experiencing are some of the classic symptoms of exhaustion, which goes well beyond tiredness.

Causes of Exhaustion:

Physical Exhaustion: When you find yourself burning the candle at both ends and not getting enough sleep, physical exhaustion will eventually set in.  Your body has run out of gas and needs to be refueled through rest, diet, and gentle exercise.  These exhaustion symptoms you feel can be extreme.

Muscle Exhaustion: A close cousin to physical exhaustion, muscle exhaustion happens gradually and usually results from excessive exercise and exertion.  Your body builds up an excess amount of serotonin, which suppresses your body’s energy.  Fortunately, the resulting symptoms of muscle exhaustion, which can include soreness and inflammation, are usually alleviated by rest.

Metabolic Exhaustion: If you’re an athlete or are more physically active than the general population, your body processes a flood of chemical reactions during your peak activity levels.  These energy expenditures can lead to metabolic exhaustion, which results from a build up of acids within your body tissue and blood.  

Emotional Exhaustion: When you find yourself dealing with a flurry of feelings through the daily events in your life, you may become emotionally exhausted. Sadness, anger, and frustration can lead you to expend increased emotional energy to manage your life circumstances. Confusion, irritation, and other symptoms of exhaustion can result.  Unlike physical exhaustion, rest by itself may not necessarily help relieve this type of exhaustion.

Mental Exhaustion: Our ever competitive work world often results in our overtaxing our mental capacities; problem-solving, negotiating, and other complex intellectual tasks can push your grey matter past its capabilities, which depletes your energy, resulting in mental exhaustion.  Much like muscle exhaustion, mental exhaustion develops over a period of time during which your intellect is working overtime.

Wired But Tired Exhaustion: This ironic condition results when one has been over-stimulated but suffers from low levels of energy.  More commonly, when you feel “too tired to fall asleep,” you are probably suffering from Wired But Tired Exhaustion.  The symptoms of exhaustion include an inability to concentrate and irritability, that are not easily remedied by sleep or pharmaceuticals.

Prolonged/Chronic Exhaustion: This ongoing problem lasts for weeks and months at a time. Sometimes it results from an underlying condition, but more often, especially for women, this type of exhaustion has no identifiable source.  This condition is sometimes called Central Nervous System Exhaustion, as the symptoms include an interplay between the physical and psychological.  

Pharmacological Exhaustion: Western medicine often relies on prescription medication to treat patients for any number of conditions.  Unfortunately, an overuse of medicine can lead to pharmacological exhaustion, and it is often not safe to quit taking medication cold turkey.