Stress: Burn Out and Exhaustion Disorder

If stress is not dealt with, one can end up with more severe stress damages, even repairable brain damages, that can eventually lead to exhaustion disorder, or more popularly called burnout, which is a a prolonged response to chronic stressors often related to work.

There is so far no agreed international diagnosis among other thing due to fear of insurance claims.
However, since these symptoms create prolonged intense frustration and severely impaired daily functioning, often taking 1-3 years to gradually recover from, it is very important to stall any deterioration with compensatory rest as well as adjusted activity level and duration.

In Sweden exhaustion syndrome is acknowledged as a diagnosis within the healthcare system distinguished by a significant deterioration of life, more specifically significantly reduced mental energy including

1. Mental and/or physical symptoms of exhaustion for more than 2 weeks


2. Due to prolonged mental pressure and/or physical stress for at least 6 months

3. As well as deterioration that cause clinically significant distress or impairment within at least four of the following areas during the same two-week period:

-Decreased concentration: Difficulties to follow red thread, read, follow plots in movie/series

-Memory impairment: Difficulties remembering e.g. words, names, meals, errands

-Impaired handling of demands and time pressure

-More easily moved/emotional instability and/or increased irritation and ånger

-Greater bodily fatigue: physical energy, tiredness

-Reduced mental endurance and energy levels in everyday activities

-More need for recovery time as well as need for extra rest

-Impaired sleep quality

-Greater sensitivity to sensory input e.g. sound, vision, crowds, traffic

-Bodily problems such as pains, aches, dizziness, palpitation, stomach problems etc.

More about how to heal exhaustion next week.

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