Fatigue management

What is fatigue?

Fatigue refers to mental or physical exhaustion that stops a person from being able to function normally. It is more than simply feeling tired or drowsy. Fatigue is caused by prolonged periods of physical and/or mental exertion without enough time to rest and recover.

Fatigue is generally caused by:

  • spending long periods of time awake
  • having an inadequate amount and/or quality of sleep over an extended period.

Fatigue can be a major source of stress on our bodies and fatigue can significantly affect how we function on a day-to-day basis.

What causes fatigue?

While fatigue is generally caused by lack of sleep or poor-quality sleep, there are several related factors that can contribute to its development.

  • Stress
  • Poor balance between increased activity without adequate rest  
  • Heavy family and social obligations
  • High level of community activities Emotional issues (for example, relationship pressures)
  • Age
  • Poor health and fitness levels

What can I do about it?

Below is some tips to help with managing fatigue.

Personal factors affecting sleepAvoid excessive alcohol as this can disturb your sleep Avoid caffeine a few hours before bed
Medical conditions affecting sleep, such as sleep apnoeaSeek medical advice
Poor sleep environmentInstall heavy curtains that keep the light outReduce the volume of the telephone and the television – don’t keep them in the bedroomKeep the bedroom cool
Poor sleep practices (e.g. watching television in bed, drinking coffee or alcohol or eating a heavy meal before going to bed)Get into a routine for going to sleep (e.g. take a warm shower or relaxing bath before going to bed, listen to soothing music) Avoid heavy meals, alcohol and tea or coffee before going to bed
Hectic family/social lifePlan your family/social activities and ensure you get sufficient rest  

If you would like more advice, please speak to the team to help implement these tips into your routine.

from ‘the Neurophysiotherapist Team at Simpson Physiotherapy Ltd.

Fraser Simpson

Simpson Physiotherapy

"We Help Older Adults Stay Independent and Able to Look After Themselves in Their Own Home. (Despite Challenges With Walking or Getting About, Stroke, or Parkinson's Disease.)"


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