It can be so easy to fall into the trap of taking too much on. Whether this be at work or in your home life, saying yes to one too many things can leave you playing catch up in all areas. When you overstretch yourself, this can also filter into your sleep too, making you tired and bringing with it a slew of annoying symptoms.
Here is a selection of tell-tale signs to watch out for so you don’t get too run down.
1. Extreme Tiredness
When you have a bad night’s sleep, it really knocks you the next day. You feel a little out of it and no matter how many coffees you have, you won’t be performing at your best in any area of your life. Now imagine a week or even a month of lost sleeping hours – it soon adds up to extreme tiredness.
Sleep is so important to the body and mind. Without the chance to rest and recuperate, you will be running on empty, on the long road to ill health and mounting stress.
Apart from being run down, there are also lots of reasons that your tiredness could be medical. See this list from the NHS to rule any out. Be sure to always consult your doctor if you are worried about anything though.
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2. Concentration Failure
With tiredness comes a lack of concentration. In some professions this could mean giving £15 change from a £10 note, or more serious mistakes that could put others in danger. Having a restful night’s sleep is essential for performing at your best. You feel better, you look better and the work you do will be of a much higher quality.
If you’ve ever lost a few hours of sleep to illness, taking care of children or noisy neighbours, you will know all too well the curse of brain fog. You spend your day walking around in a haze, forgetting to do the simplest of tasks and feeling very ineffective.
This sign of being run down can lead to you not being able to get work done and everything beginning to pile up on you.
3. Cold Sores
If you have managed to avoid getting a cold sore so far, count yourself lucky. The herpes simplex virus can cause sore and unsightly cold sores on and around your mouth, particularly if you are feeling run down.
However, if you are prone to cold sores, there’s so much advice to help you to reduce the number of outbreaks each year, identify prevention techniques that actually work and keep those around you safe.
This cold sore FAQ link deals with 50 of the most commonly asked questions so you can educate yourself better.
4. Too Many Colds!
Another tell-tale sign is getting cold, after cold, after cold. Your immune system is only as good as the rest and recuperation it is given. Working so hard that you miss out on good sleep will chip away at your immune system’s ability to protect you from viruses – meaning you will end up catching every rotten cold that’s going around the office.
The standard ‘good health’ advice is very applicable to keeping your ability to fight off infection at its most effective:
- Plenty of good quality sleep
- Minimise stress
- Stay fit and active
- A diet rich in protein, fibre, fruit and vegetables
If you’re worried that your tendency to catch whatever illness is making the rounds, be sure to contact your GP to look into this further. Holland & Barrett highlight here the long-term effects of a weak immune system.
5. Mood Swings
Our mood is closely related to how much sleep we get, making mood swings a distinct possibility if we are doing too much and not giving our bodies and minds the chance to unwind and rest.
Tiredness and irritability will increase when we are run down, as well as affecting other health problems including depression. Having a blissful sleep sets you up for the challenges of the day ahead, so if you find yourself a bit snappy with friends and family, it could be down to your need for a few ZZZs.
The Sleep Health Foundation says, “Research studies in healthy people have shown that even one night without sleep causes sleepiness, fatigue, irritability and lack of motivation. Sleep loss will make us feel more upset, angry and sad in response to unpleasant events and make us less able to enjoy and be happy about good things in our life.”
An increase in the amount of sleep you get – due to getting your work/life balance back in order – is said to dramatically improve your mood and general wellbeing.