Chronic body aches and fatigue can affect anyone- no matter what your age- and can be a quite stressful experience.
Some of the most common body aches include neck/back pain, muscle pain, headaches, and joint pain. In addition, there is neuropathic pain, which is a condition that results in a malfunction of the nervous system.
Chronic body aches and fatigue can be a serious medical condition that needs medical attention and should never be ignored.
Following are some of the most common causes of body aches and fatigue that you should be aware of.
When to be Concerned?
Of course, body aches and fatigue are very common, but the severe pain located in joints and muscles is a lot like what you have when you are dealing with the flu.
Some of the other symptoms that accompany chronic body aches and fatigue are:
- Tenderness when pain is most severe
- Lack of sleep
- Weakness/sick feeling
Due to the fact that there are some serious conditions that can manifest with chronic body aches and fatigue, it is critical that you make an appointment with your physician to get checked out.
Following are some of the common conditions that manifest with these symptoms:
This is a condition in which the primary symptoms are sleep disturbances, body aches, and fatigue. In addition, individuals with this condition also have the following:
- Stiffness upon waking
- Painful tender points
- Difficulties with cognitive functioning
- Mood disorders
- IBS (irritable bowel syndrome)
- TMJ (temporomandibular joint disorder)
- Chronic pelvic pain
- Painful bladder syndrome
- Inflammation of prostate gland
Unfortunately, there is no treatment for the condition of fibromyalgia, but you can manage the symptoms. Your physician is most likely to prescribe muscle relaxers or antidepressants to help you cope.
However, the first line of treatment is taking care of yourself by getting adequate exercise, learning to relax, eating a healthy diet, physical therapy, and cognitive-behavioral therapy.
In many cases, complementary/alternative therapies such as acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine, and yoga have been proven to work better than medications.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, or CFS
The signs and symptoms of CFS are nearly the same as the ones of fibromyalgia. However, the feelings of fatigue are not improved with rest in the condition of CFS as they are with the condition of fibromyalgia.
The condition of Lyme disease is the result of being bitten by a blacklegged tick that is infected with a bacteria known as Borrelia burgdorferi. The symptoms that characterize Lyme disease are:
- Widespread pain
- Difficulty concentrating
- Memory loss
- Disturbances of sleep
- Severe headache
- Tender points
- Sensation impairment
Lyme disease can be cured with a round of antibiotics if it is caught early- but can result in complications such as long-term inflammation of the joints, problems with the brain/nervous system, and problems with heart rhythm.
So, if you have a large rash that looks similar to a bull’s eye or you know you have been bitten by a tick and you have the above symptoms, see your physician right away.
Of course, this seems cliché, but stress truly can be the culprit for why you are experiencing body aches and fatigue. Some of the other common symptoms of stress are as follows:
- Chest pain
- Muscle pain
- Upset stomach
- Difficulty sleeping
However, if you’re not sure that stress is the cause of your issues or if you have gotten your stress under control but are still experiencing symptoms, you should see your physician as soon as possible to find out other possible causes and how to deal with them.
Low Vitamin D Levels
Another common reason for chronic body aches and fatigue is low levels of Vitamin D in the blood. Vitamin D is what helps your body to successfully absorb calcium and keeps your bones strong, so that fractures are prevented.
Some of the most common symptoms of a vitamin D deficiency are as follows:
- Achy body
- Overall weakness
Once you have been diagnosed with a Vitamin D deficiency, you can easily treat this by taking Vitamin D supplements and making sure that you are consuming a healthy diet. Keep in mind that prolonged Vitamin D deficiency can lead to osteoporosis, which is much more common in women than in men.
Low iron levels
Low iron- or lack of iron- in the blood is a condition that is known as anemia. This condition results in lower levels of nutrients and oxygen carried to parts of your body, which lead to an overall tired and achy feeling. Other signs and symptoms of this condition include the following:
- Pale skin/nails
- Achy muscles
- Brittle hair/nails
- Excessive menstrual bleeding
Treating low iron levels includes iron replacement therapies such as syrups and tablets. Besides that, it’s necessary that you eat iron-rich foods and live a healthy lifestyle.
The condition of multiple sclerosis, or MS, is characterized by symptoms involving the brain and spinal cord.
Due to the fact that the nerves/spinal cord and brain are involved in this disorder, individuals with this condition suffer from fatigue and body aches. Some of the other symptoms of this condition include:
- Blurry vision
- Problems with cognitive functioning
- Muscle stiffness
- Problems with urination
While there is no cure for this condition, treating it in a timely manner can help to slow the progression.
Treatments include deep brain stimulation and medication, as well as treating some of the conditions that arise as a result of MS.
The condition of osteoarthritis is characterized by the erosion of the cartilage between two bones. This results in the bones rubbing together, which causes discomfort and chronic pain- in some cases, you may be dealing with potentially debilitating body aches. In addition, you may notice other symptoms such as:
- Sore/stiff joints
- Stiffness upon waking/after physical activity
- Pain in hands, back, and hips
This is a condition in which the nerves are affected- usually by damage as a result of injury and/or disease. The result is malfunctioning nerves all over your body, especially in the area that is affected. Some of the other symptoms include:
- Muscle spasms
- Little/no coordination
- Muscle pain/tingling
So, while it’s true that minor aches and pains and even fatigue can be a normal part of the aging process, if there are other symptoms also present, you should see your physician as soon as possible so that you can seek the proper treatment for your condition.