Are you feeling constantly tired and overwhelmed? Do you find yourself struggling to concentrate or being easily irritated? If so, you may be suffering from emotional fatigue. While the concept of emotional fatigue is not new, it is only recently that scientists have begun to understand its physical effects. This post will explore the symptoms and potential causes of emotional fatigue as well as ways to manage and prevent it.

Causes of Emotional Fatigue

Emotional exhaustion is when you feel emotionally worn-out and drained due to the accumulation of stress in your personal or professional lives, or both. People’s everyday lives, relationships and behaviours can be profoundly affected by emotional fatigue.

An emotionally exhausted person may experience physical, mental and performance-related symptoms. Here are some of the possible causes of emotional fatigue:

Job-related stress

Stress can occur when someone feels unhappy at work or works too many hours. This can also lead to a sense of purposelessness and emotional exhaustion.

Relationship struggles

Having friendship or relationship issues can lead to diminished social support and increased stress, contributing to mental fatigue.

Losing a loved one

If you lose a loved one, you may experience a wide range of grief emotions, such as anger, sadness,  loneliness, and emotional fatigue.

Being a caregiver

It takes patience, time and self-sacrifice to be a caregiver. People who sacrifice too much while caring for a family member or friend can become mentally and emotionally exhausted.


Parents face difficulties daily, including sleeping too little, being on call 24/7, and not having time for themselves. Physical, mental and emotional exhaustion can result from this.

8 Warning Signs You’re Mentally and Emotionally Exhausted

Both physical and emotional exhaustion affect a person’s well-being and behaviour. Over time and with repeated stresses, the symptoms of emotional exhaustion may begin to appear, even though the warning signs may not be recognized at first.

When you’re stressed to the point of emotional exhaustion, your stress hormones (cortisol and sometimes adrenalin) are likely go into overdrive. These stress hormones are useful in times of emergency. However, if you fail to take a break from that constant pressure, you’ll be caught in a stress cycle that will affect your sleep, immunity and metabolism.

Emotional exhaustion can adversely affect a person’s behaviours and levels of energy. Finding out how to recognize the symptoms of emotional exhaustion in yourself and those around you will be extremely helpful. By doing so, you or said person can begin taking steps toward getting better. You can take an emotional exhaustion test or learn about its symptoms to check if you’re experiencing emotional fatigue.

The following are some common signs of emotional exhaustion:

1. Fatigue

One of the main symptoms of emotional exhaustion is fatigue. This is when you feel exceptionally tired even after taking steps to ensure that you get the right amount of sleep. The kind of fatigue that comes with emotional exhaustion feels like you need to exert a lot of energy to perform any task.

2. Tension in muscles

It can be hard to predict how mental fatigue will affect a person physically. However, backaches or muscle soreness are common in those with emotional fatigue.

3. Digestive issues

A person’s stomach is directly affected by the brain. Feelings of anger, anxiety, or sadness—any of these emotions can trigger digestive symptoms. Digestive health and nutrient absorption can also be affected by stress. The intestinal barrier can be weakened by stress due to emotional exhaustion..

4. Appetite changes

When you’re mentally exhausted, you may snack excessively. It can lead to cravings for sugary, salty or fatty foods. Some people may not feel hungry at all. Some people may eat unhealthy snacks, fast food and convenience foods because they are too tired to cook.

5. Gaining or losing weight

Being emotionally fatigued can lead to weight gain. Or it could be the opposite, and you may lose weight without meaning to.

6. Heart palpitations

We all experience heart palpitations, and irregular or racing pulses from time to time. However, if they’re frequent and last more than a couple of seconds, they need to be evaluated.

7. Headaches

Another common symptom of being emotionally drained is getting headaches. Having frequent headaches can interfere with productivity at work and disrupt your personal life.

8. A lack of sleep or frequent oversleeping

Not getting enough sleep or oversleeping are symptoms of mental exhaustion. Sleep deprivation can exacerbate mental fatigue.

How to Prevent and Manage Emotional Fatigue

A lifestyle change is typically required to reduce the symptoms of emotional exhaustion. In some instances, therapy or medication may be necessary. But being aware of emotional exhaustion is the first step to combating it. Did you know that chiropractic can help with tension and inability to relax? Some tips for preventing and managing emotional exhaustion are:

Taking steps to reduce stress in your life

It’s important to reduce sources of stress whenever possible. Learn the practice of mindfulness as an additional step towards regulating your stress levels.

Consume healthier foods

Consume a healthy, balanced diet, and aim for eight glasses of water each day.


Exercise for at least 30 minutes every day. Add some fun to how you exercise by switching up your routine. Try jogging for one day, then opt for a dance class next time.

Establish a sleep routine

Set a regular time for sleeping and waking up. Ensure that you sleep between seven and nine hours every night. And make sure your gadgets are turned off one hour before going to bed.

Maintain a good work-life balance

Going on a vacation and taking rest days should be your priority, rather than letting work or stress overtake your life. Try to devote your weekend to doing things you enjoy.

Socialise and seek support

Reach out to others. Engage in social activities such as meeting up with friends or joining a club.

Consult health professionals

Therapy can help treat emotional exhaustion. A therapist can teach individuals new coping techniques and challenge negative thinking.

Emotional exhaustion can lead to unpleasant effects if left unchecked and untreated. Prevent and manage emotional exhaustion by getting some much-needed downtime and family time and incorporating healthier habits. To book an appointment to discuss how chiropractic care can help restlessness, tension and the inability to relax simply contact us.

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