Feelings of exhaustion may seem to be a common occurrence for a number of us. The alarm goes off too early, the demands of daily life are many, and by the end of the day, once we can finally sink into bed, it may not be easy to stop our thoughts and get a restful night’s sleep. Nevertheless, after we do get a good night’s sleep, we awake feeling invigorated and ready to take on the world.
For senior loved ones, however, there are numerous factors that can lead to chronic fatigue – a condition that is not as easily remedied, and much more than simply tiredness in old age. As March is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Awareness Month, Abby Senior Care has the information you need to understand chronic fatigue in seniors, and to help manage it.
Causes of Chronic Fatigue
- An assortment of health conditions, including cancer, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, COPD, kidney and liver disease
- Prescription medication side effects, including from antihistamines, antidepressants, and pain or nausea meds
- Medical treatments, such as surgical procedures and recovery, chemotherapy, and radiation
- Sleep apnea or other sleep difficulties
- Emotional challenges, such as those experienced in depression and anxiety
- Thoughts and feelings of despondency or diminished control in life
- Financial or personal stress
- Unhealthy eating and exercise habits
- And others
Many times, a physician can address the underlying reasons behind chronic fatigue, so it is best to schedule a checkup and consultation if a senior you love is struggling with some of the issues above.
Tips to Help
Additionally, the following advice can help with conquering fatigue:
- Keep a record that documents when the senior feels most energized, and most sluggish.
- Provide more physical activity in the older adult’s day-to-day routine. (Be sure to get authorization from his / her doctor prior to starting or modifying any exercise programs.)
- Modify sleeping habits to eliminate naps of more than half an hour, and especially napping in the late afternoon/early evening, to allow for improved sleep throughout the night.
- Quit – or never start – smoking, which is proven to cause numerous medical problems that can drain energy.
- Encourage your older loved one to speak to a professional counselor, to address and deal with stress, anxiety, depression, or any other emotional difficulties.
- Allow plenty of time for fun! Laughter is a wonderful, natural, energy and mood booster.
- Schedule specific times each day for relaxation – listening to peaceful music, reading, meditation or prayer, or enjoying a favorite soothing hobby, such as knitting or working on puzzles.
Abby Senior Care, the expert providers of at home care in Denver and the surrounding areas, are always here to provide additional strategies to conquer fatigue and to make life more pleasurable for seniors. Give us a call at 303-699-8840 to request a complimentary in-home consultation to find out more.