The good news is that you should feel less tired with time.

Why do I feel so tired all the time?

It takes a lot of energy for your body to heal after a stroke. The tired feeling may be due to:

  • changes to your brain from your stroke
  • mental activity
  • physical activity

The good news is that you should feel less tired with time.

Watch this video on how stroke can affect sleep:

Video credit: National Stroke Foundation

What can I do now to have more energy?

As your body gets stronger, you will have more energy. Some people feel tired for a long time. If you continue to feel tired, here are some helpful tips to manage fatigue. Here are some things you can do:

Take care of your body

  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Drink 6 to 8 cups of fluid every day
  • Get a good night sleep
  • Go to sleep and wake up the same time every day
  • Take short naps if you need but save the longest sleep for nighttime
  • Be active and move around as much as you can

Plan your days

  • Plan your days and schedule in rest time
  • Plan to do your activities when you have the most energy
  • Make a daily to-do list and focus on the important things first
  • Break up big tasks into smaller tasks. For example, preparing dinner can be broken down into 3 tasks and can be done at different times:
    1. decide on a recipe and ensure you have the right ingredients
    2. prepare ingredients such as washing and cutting up vegetables
    3. cook meal

How can I get a good night sleep?

It is helpful to know what is “good sleep” and “poor sleep”, and how sleep affects your daily life.

Good sleep

is being able to fall asleep and sleep through the night is vital to your recovery, helps your brain, heal gives your mind and body energy

Poor sleep

is trouble falling asleep or not being able to sleep through the night, makes you feel tired during the day, can make it harder to concentrate or do things you enjoy

Try these tips to get a good night sleep:

Prepare your body:

  • Avoid caffeine, alcohol and nicotine 6 hours before bed time.
  • Finish dinner at least 3 hours before bed time.
  • Drink enough fluid to keep you from waking up thirsty.
  • Do not drink so much that you need to wake up to pee.
  • Use the bathroom before getting into bed.
  • Make a relaxing bedtime routine. For example, try soothing music and/or belly breathing exercises.

Prepare your bedroom:

  • Keep your room quiet, dark and cool.
  • Keep computers, cell phones, TVs and work out of your bedroom.
  • Dim the lights before bedtime.

I have tried different things and still have trouble sleeping. What should I do?

Talk to your doctor if you have poor sleep. They can help you manage this.

Some things they may recommend include:

  • Seeing a sleep specialist
  • Taking sleep medicine
  • Counselling and therapy such as mindfulness meditation and cognitive behavioural therapy. 

Watch this video on relaxation techniques: 

Video credit: Patricia Fentie

Having read the information in this section, consider the following

  • Do I have trouble sleeping?
  • Am I worried, anxious or is my mind racing when I am trying to rest?
  • Am I too tired to do the things I need to do or enjoy?

Where to get more information, help and support:

Toronto Central Healthline

Hennick Bridgepoint Hospital – Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction Program 

National Sleep Foundation

Sleep Education