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The #1 Reason Why You're Always So Tired, According to Science

... And you're certainly not alone.
FACT CHECKED BY Faye Brennan

Getting a good night's sleep is crucial for your health and overall well-being. If you don't recharge your body with the amount of sleep it truly needs, the deficit will negatively impact how you feel physically, your ability to focus, and how you behave. One night without good, solid sleep can, unfortunately, throw your entire week off.

The Sleep Foundation reports that being deprived of sleep over a length of time can create long-term health issues, negatively impact relationships and your job, and even bring on feelings of depression. Not getting the sleep you need and feeling refreshed on the regular is something to be concerned about.

Read on to learn more, and next, check out The 6 Best Exercises for Strong and Toned Arms in 2022, Trainer Says.

You're not the only one wondering, "Why am I tired literally all the time?"

Woman lying on her bed with her eyes closed.
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According to Google search data, that particular question has been looked up over and over again this month. As a matter of fact, "Why am I always tired?" has been a key phrase typed into search bars 500% more during this month, and more than any question has ever been searched throughout the past 18 years. (To be precise, we're talking since the beginning of Google searches in 2004!)

This is a pretty extraordinary phenomenon, wouldn't you agree? We have the well-being and sleep experts over at Eachnight.com to thank for this discovery, who reported the astonishing number of times the query has been searched.

Related: Over 60? This Is What Happens to Your Body When You Don't Sleep Enough

You might have COVID, but there are other potential causes for your fatigue

woman rubs her head, tired, sitting on bed
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There are many obvious factors that the world is experiencing right now that likely contribute to this curiosity and shared feeling of tiredness. Not only has the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention listed fatigue as a symptom of COVID-19,—and a symptom of long COVID by American Medical Association member Devang Sanghavi, MD—but there are other potential causes that can be playing a part.

Yes, stress could be the main reason for your fatigue

Exhausted young tattooed business woman keeping eyes closed, touching head and suffering from the headache while sitting at her working place in the modern office
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"The past two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, with fear, illness, and multiple lockdowns stretching our emotional and physical resources to their limit, have had an extraordinary effect on our sleep," sleep expert at Eachnight.com, Jasmin Lee, explains. "For many of us, our bodies have been in crisis mode for over a year, dealing with untenable situations such as working full time from home while home-schooling children, the potential grief of losing loved ones to the virus, or simply the grinding loneliness of being unable to meet family and friends face-to-face, which–as human beings–we need for our mental health and stability."

Lee further comments on how stress can negatively affect our REM sleep and also promote insomnia. Without a good night's sleep, your next day may very well be doomed. As a matter of fact, a study published in BMC Research Notes reveals the close link between perceived stress and fatigue, and a survey via the American Psychological Association reveals 3 out of 4 Americans believe the pandemic is a major source of stress.

"For many medical workers on the frontline of the pandemic, the stress and exhaustion of battling the virus [have] led to 'combat fatigue' where depression, burnout, and PTSD symptoms such as nightmares are commonplace as they continue to run on an empty tank. 'Long Covid,' with its often-debilitating fatigue, is also being increasingly reported in former COVID-19 patients," Lee explains.

This pandemic has been a dark cloud that brought isolation, disruption, illness, and fatigue, which Lee refers to as "a toxic mixture of exhaustion as we approach the two-year anniversary of the start of the pandemic, reflecting the huge spike in people Googling their tiredness symptoms."

Related: One Secret Side Effect of Having Weird Dreams, Science Says

For more…

woman wearing fuzzy sleep mask in bed
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When in doubt, if you're constantly feeling fatigued, it's crucial to consult with your healthcare professional to pinpoint exactly what's going on.

For more sleep advice, check out Feeling Tired? These Supplements Can Help You, Experts Say and Why Do You Always Wake Up in the Middle of the Night? A Sleep Specialist Weighs In.

Alexa Mellardo
Alexa is the Mind + Body Deputy Editor of Eat This, Not That!, overseeing the M+B channel and delivering compelling fitness, wellness, and self-care topics to readers. Read more