Coping with Fatigue, How to battle Tiredness!

Students who hardly get an average of five to seven hours of sleep at night and can find it hard to get up in the mornings.


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“Beep. Beep. Beep,” is the wake-up alarm call that countless numbers of students hear first thing in the morning. Danielson Baures, a senior psychology from Greenwood, says, “The morning wake-up “beep” can be heard an average of three times before the student rolls out of bed. While it’s nice to hit that snooze button and get a few more minutes of sleep.”

What Can Happen?

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Fatigue which results from lack of sleep, nutritional deficiencies, and stressful conditions like fever or flu. But He admits that students hardly get an average of five to seven hours of sleep at night and can find it hard to get up in the mornings. With exams, papers, work, and relationships to maintain, students often will put food habits, sleep and recreation low on a priority list, not realizing the effect on all aspects of life.  Students’ need plenty of rest, healthy food and a proper planned way to tackle stress by achieving their study plan before academic deadlines.

Lack of sleep: Lack of sleep affects a student physically, mentally, and emotionally, putting a student at more risk for fatigue, illness or injury. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 100,000 sleep-related crashes occur each year.  An average adult needs between seven to nine hours of sleep at night in order to get the full benefits and revive ones’ body. A student who does not get the required amount of sleep at night can experience trouble focusing or feel, a loss of energy which can have a direct impact on academic performance.   It is also difficult for students to establish good sleep habits due to the new stimulus of adjustments when living in a new area like changing the place of study or sleep including a new bed, new roommates, and new living situations. Students should build sleep patterns by going to bed around the same time each night and wake up around the same time each morning including the weekends, thus establishing a healthy sleep routine. ”

Coping with Illness -With Fever and flu the need for sleep may extend to 10-15 hours per day in bed. This is not an uncommon phenomenon. A student said: “After 2 weeks in bed I restarted lectures, but found I could not concentrate for more than 20 minutes at a time. Studying in the evening was virtually impossible, as all I wanted to do was to go to bed and sleep for days.” This may be due to the medicines or due to the fever and flu. Visit your physician and ask him to medically evaluate you if there is no improvement. “Feed the Fever and Sleep the Flu” is an ancient saying which still holds good in our times. Consult your doctor regarding vaccination during epidemics like swine flu etc

Lack of Appetite – Students typically try to combat tiredness with coffee, tea or energy drinks but the effects of such drinks wear off, and students crash to a new extreme.”Thus students your body cannot run on caffeine and tea alone.”Often your appetite is affected and can result in chaotic eating patterns. Keep a check on your weight. Eat healthy natural food and drink plenty of fresh water which is the best tonic given to us by Mother Earth. But avoid eating two to three hours before bed.  Exercise during the breaks with aerobic, dance or simple chair exercises will give you relaxation between your study plans.

Lack of Concentration

Unfortunately, the very activity you are here for is one of the hardest to achieve as your ability to concentrate for long periods diminishes. As another student said: “The mental effort involved in thinking clearly, learning, writing and reading was such that on some days these activities were impossible.”Read for 30- 45 minutes and then summarise to concentrate on the main points to link them up. Meditation and Deep breathing exercises during the breaks may also sharpen your concentration. Sleep is the best way to regain your concentration in an appropriate environment.

Introspection – Fatigue can affect the way you see yourself in relation to others and in relation to your academic abilities and performance. Waves of self-criticism and self-doubt can radically alter your perception. You may start to doubt your ability in all sorts of areas from personal achievements, thus losing confidence in yourself. So the next tip is believe in yourself in times of doubt. Have an honest study partner who can evaluate your progress or hurdles. Sometimes you can just sit back and evaluate your own performance and award yourself for the small achievements.

Mood Swings – are quite common during study hours as periods of mental work uses up energy to give way to overwhelming fatigue and episodes of feeling good give way to feelings of depression. Fatigue can affect how people feel about themselves, a person’s mood, and the way a person handles anxiety or stress. Sleep is a way to refresh and rejuvenate a person’s body. Prepare a comfortable study plan not only for the final exams but also for studying daily to boost up your confidence. This will increase your energy level and give you the ability to focus in a short period of time.

Overtiredness – If the symptoms of fatigue do persist beyond a few weeks, students may go back to previous levels of activity and try to make up for the lost time. However, if this is you, listen to your body signals; adjust to your new lower energy levels, before over tiredness takes over you leaving a feeling of frustration, unable to cope, depression, tearful and pessimistic attitude about future efforts. It is also important that you don’t compare yourself and your energy levels to others – work with how you yourself feel now and listen to what your body is telling you. Don’t be tempted to over exert yourself. As one student said: “The main thing I learned is this: I must accept that unless I am sensible and avoid overdoing things the fatigue could re-occur. Accepting this involved altering my ideas on time where time-saving management completed a lot of things in a short space of time. Trying to do so I would end up in bed for the following few days and take half the time given to complete the project methodically…”

Retreating from life – Your low levels of energy tend to mean that all normal social activities become such an effort that you retreat into your room/bed with little or no social contact: friends find it difficult to understand just what fatigue can mean. It is easy to lose sight of your normal healthy self as the term moves swiftly on and you feel left behind. This can leave you feeling very vulnerable, easily stressed and anxious about things that would not have stressed you in the past. As a student said, “Being unable to participate in student life made me feel very isolated and lonely.” With finals coming up around the corner get a full night of rest before an exam. “It is not worth it to stay up late cramming. Late night studying only deprives a person of energy and sleep making it difficult for them to focus and perform well during an exam.”     

So Fight the Fatigue with the freshness of life with good sleep, healthy food and water, relaxation exercises like meditation and aerobics during the breaks not forgetting the planning of a comfortable study plan with adequate breaks to rejuvenate your energy, sharpen your concentration and memory. So Students check out your style with the tips to combat Fatigue

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