Fatigue is a physical and/or mental exhaustion that is very common in Parkinson’s and may be one of the first symptoms to appear.
Fatigue can be caused by one or more factors, including medication, the extra effort of managing the symptoms, disturbed sleep or depression. Alternatively, fatigue may develop due to chemical changes in the brain that occur in Parkinson’s.
It is important to identify the cause of fatigue. For example, if fatigue is associated with depression, then depression should be treated; and if it is caused by sleeping problems, then the sleep pattern should be assessed and treated. Fatigue caused directly by Parkinson’s may be treated with medication.
The worst thing is the fatigue. When it hits me I have to lie down. I can only compare it to the exhaustion one gets after having a baby. During these times my brain doesn’t work. Simple things, such as lifting the phone and making a call, become arduous. I was supposed to call a friend last night but I could barely dial the number.