Brain Fog: Symptoms, Causes and Ways to Beat it

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Have you ever felt this? 

You're about to start your work or maybe you're in the middle of doing an assignment when suddenly everything stops processing in your mind. It feels like you are in some kind of haze and no matter how hard you try to concentrate, you're not able to focus. Maybe you're even feeling sluggish and are forgetting things. 

If you had a similar experience like this, it might be possible that it is brain fog. It can feel extremely frustrating when all you want to do is complete your work and give your 100% percent to it. Brain fog is a common issue and you can overcome and get out of this haze. 

But what exactly is brain fog? What are the symptoms? And what are the causes? 

Read on to get your answers.

What is brain fog? 

Brain fog is not a medical condition or nor is it an official medical term. It's a general and subjective term for not being able to think clearly and feeling disoriented and foggy. It's like when you wake up from a deep sleep and you are confused, slow, thinking about what happened, what's going on, etc., but longer. 

Some of the symptoms of brain fog are:

1. Lack of Concentration
2. Fatigue
3. Forgetfulness
4. Inability to multitask
5. Lack of motivation
6. Easily confused
7. An inability to focus.
8. Slow thinking or not thinking clearly.

Everyone goes through a slump once in a while but when it gets really difficult to focus and it starts affecting your day-to-day activities, it might be because of brain fog. If this persists for a long time, it is best to consult your doctor to find out the root cause and get proper treatment. In the meantime, here are some common reasons for it. 

Causes of brain fog:

The current situation can be a major reason for brain fog. Experts say that being in a pandemic and staying isolated can cause a lot of stress, which can lead to brain fog. Some of the other causes you need to look out for are:

1. Insufficient sleep

It is possible that you are not able to get a good night's sleep with all your work and assignments. And pulling an all-nighter might seem like a good option but trust me it's not. Lack of sleep can lead to a lot of problems in your daily life and it is one of the causes of brain fog. 

2. Lack of exercise 

Your body needs movement. Exercise has always been a good solution to a lot of physical and even mental problems. Mind and body have a deep connection, so when your body is active, your mind is active. Lack of exercise will lead to cognitive as well as physical problems.

3. Stress and anxiety 

Stress and anxiety can be major causes of brain fog. It can affect your mental health and your body's immune system, making you weak mentally and physically. When you are constantly under stress, you will never get the time to relax and calm yourself. This can lead to mental exhaustion and cause brain fog.

4. Poor diet 

You eat not only for your body but for your brain too. Having a poor diet can cause a lot of issues physically as well as mentally. If you don't get proper nutrients in your body, your mind will always be sleepy. Eating a bag of potato chips might not feel like a big issue, but its after-effects on your body and mind are definitely harmful.

5. Dehydration 

When you are dehydrated, your body can feel lethargic and your mind can feel groggy. Staying hydrated is very important because your body can live without food for weeks but it can’t live that long without water. So dehydration can lead to brain fog as well as other issues.

6. Changes in hormones 

Certain hormones can lead to brain fog. Similarly, a decrease in hormone levels in some may also trigger forgetfulness. Menopause might trigger brain fog in some women.

Ways to beat brain fog:

Brain fog is a curable condition. And there are ways you can prevent it from happening and get out of the haze. Here are some of the ways that can help you:

1. Good sleep 
A night of good sleep is necessary for everyday activities. The recommended sleep is about 7-8 hours. If you have a good uninterrupted sleep, your cognitive functions would be much better and sharper. Your body needs the rest to function properly. 

2. Proper healthy diet 
Can't stress about this more! Having a proper diet is necessary for your body and mind. Add a lot of vegetables and fruit to your diet. Eat healthy food rich with nutrients that nourishes your body. And avoid junk foods as much as possible.

3. Exercise 
Regular exercise can help you focus, concentrate and help you with the other symptoms of brain fog, too. Fixing a time to exercise even 10 minutes of movement can make a difference, both physically and mentally.

4. Reducing stress 
Keeping calm under stress is difficult, some can manage it well but some find it hard. But there are ways you can reduce your stress with the help of activities like meditation, etc. Keeping your body and mind calm can help immensely with brain fog.

5. Hydrating 
Drink more water! That's it. It might seem insignificant to you but it has a great impact on your body and mind. If you don't want to feel lazy and tired all the time, then stay hydrated. Plus drinking water has a lot of other benefits too. 

Brain fog can also be a symptom of some underlying medical issue, so don't forget to consult your doctor on this. Even though brain fog is not an official medical term, it doesn't make it any less real. These suggestions are not from an expert or a registered doctor, it is just a reflection of personal experiences so it might work for some and might not for others. 

Sometimes changing certain habits or lifestyle choices might help in beating brain fog. And in some cases, a health care provider is required to guide you through this. Nevertheless, know that you're not alone and you can definitely overcome this!

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