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Fatigue is a common among teens. Sometimes, your teen may have fatigue for months or even years and may develop symptoms of "chronic fatigue syndrome."
Common causes of fatigue in teens include:
1. Mononucleosis ("mono," or "the kissing disease")
Mono usually is diagnosed by a blood test called the "Mono spot."
The best treatment for mono is getting plenty of rest and eating a healthful diet.
Most people get better within a month. If your teen has mono, he should not play any contact sports such as soccer, football, or lacrosse during the month after he gets mono to lessen the chance of a ruptured spleen.
Anemia is the state of not having enough red blood cells, and it is a common cause of tiredness in teens, especially girls. The most common causes are not enough iron in the diet or, for girls, losing iron due to heavy menstrual periods.
With anemia, your child may feel weak and more tired than usual and not do as well at school or in sports. He may also appear pale.
Anemia needs to be diagnosed by a complete blood count (called a CBC). To prevent iron deficiency anemia, your teen should be getting enough iron from his diet and/or taking a multivitamin with iron. If iron deficiency anemia is diagnosed, he will need additional iron.
3. Low thyroid
4. Erratic or changing sleep patterns
Depression (feeling sad or "blue") is another common causes of fatigue in teens. If your teen continues to feel sad and can't enjoy friends, family and new challenges, he should be seen by a health care provider or mental health clinician.
If your child is fatigued, it's a good idea for him to get a medical evaluation to check for any specific cause and determine appropriate treatment.
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