Sudden Extreme Tiredness

By Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

Dear therapist, I have type 1 Bipolar disorder and have been fairly stable lately. My mood swings have been fairly mild, but I have been bothered by this sudden extreme tiredness that overwhelms me every now and then. I was just sitting at work when, within half an hour I suddenly feel like I can’t keep my eyes open let alone function! The tiredness seems to be accompanied by a listlessness and hopelessness, but not as bad as when I’m depressed. Is this normal? What can I do to prevent these episodes?

A: Thank you so much for asking this question. While there is too little here to know exactly what to recommend, there is enough to suggest you tell your general practitioner. This time of year is hallmarked by a change in the available light, a release of pollens from the budding vegetation, and changes in the academic calendar. Often this can be accompanied by changes in available energy; changes in sleep patterns; and fluctuations in anxiety levels.

The first place to check is with your physician to see if everything checks out medically. If it does, then it may be time to explore when the fatigue began and what changes took place in your life. This can help identify the causes.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 22 Apr 2012

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2012). Sudden Extreme Tiredness. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 2, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2012/04/22/sudden-extreme-tiredness/