Something I hear more and more these days is that people are exhausted and have no energy. You can say what you want about information overload, device mania, etc — to say nothing for those of us with small kids, where it’s generally accepted that exhaustion is par for the course — but the fact is that for some people, there are actually things that medicine can do to help. But even when you admit to yourself that it’s time to seek help, there are a million different routes to go down — and for friends I’ve seen seek help, it seems like doctors often need to be convinced there’s a medically-related problem. I thought it might be helpful to have a discussion for those of you who’ve gone down the huge topic that is energy and exhaustion — what did you research, what tests did you take, what doctors did you see? Did you find resolution? How did you function at work and in life in the meantime?
For example, I know any of these could be possible answers to a constant exhaustion:
- vitamin imbalance (possibly related to genetic issues like MTHFR mutations)
- sleep apnea / other sleep problems
- food intolerance
- hormone problem/ peri-menopause
- autoimmune disease
I’ve had many friends go to their doctor as a first step who ran their bloodwork (which hopefully can cross things like thyroid/cancer off the list) — but if the bloodwork comes back normal, for many doctors the inquiry ends there and friends are left to pursue their own answers and educate themselves, sometimes at great expense when things like sleep clinics and private genetic testing get into the mix. Even if you do eventually find the right “answer,” it can take a while to get used to the solution, whether it’s a new drug, a cocktail of drugs, or even just a CPAP machine or whatnot (for those with sleep apnea).
So I’m curious, ladies — have you sought help for low energy/exhaustion? How did you know you didn’t just need more coffee or sleep? What resources were helpful to you when you began your research and started to digest this huge topic? More importantly, once you found “the answer,” how long until you felt better?