What is mental exhaustion?

Mental exhaustion can cause emotional and physical strain, leaving you feeling too tired, sick and overwhelmed to do anything. Taking care of your mental health and paying attention when something is not right can help you avoid mental exhaustion. Read this to learn more.

What exactly is mental exhaustion?

Mental exhaustion is when you’re stressed out for too long and get to a point where you start feeling hopeless and demotivated. It can also affect your physical health by causing digestive problems, disturbing your sleep, and weakening your immune system.

Signs of mental exhaustion

There are physical, emotional, and behavioural signs that show that you might be suffering from mental exhaustion. Here’s what you need to lookout for.

Physical signs: these can include headaches, stomach problems, body aches, feeling tired all the time, appetite changes, insomnia, unexplained weight gain or weight loss, and getting sick often.

Emotional signs: you can experience sudden overwhelming feelings of anxiety or sadness, lack of interest in things you like, demotivation, anger, and finding it hard to concentrate.

Behavioural signs: a drop in the quality of your work, isolating yourself, missing deadlines or not keeping up with commitments, and not showing up at school or work.

What causes it?

Since mental exhaustion is caused by long-term stress, it can be triggered by a variety of things. This can be financial stress, exam stress, a toxic environment, an unbalanced work-life situation, grief, or a mental illness.

How to prevent it

Mental exhaustion can be prevented by finding healthy ways to deal with stress and being able to recognise your triggers. It’s important to give yourself time to rest and recharge, as well as to ask for help when you feel like you’re not coping. You can talk to a healthcare provider if you’ve been struggling with exhaustion.

While we can’t avoid stress, it’s important for us to be aware of the effects that prolonged (long-term) stress can have on our mental and physical health so that we can avoid them. Remember, mental exhaustion can be dealt with and speaking to a healthcare professional or someone from an organisation like SADAG, can help you recognise it sooner and deal with it in a healthy way.

Remember if you or a friend need advice or help, you can contact me here on Ask Choma, send me a Facebook Messagea Twitter DM, or a WhatsApp Message (071 172 3657).