We invite our users to share their thoughts and tips on a particular subject every week. One of the posts that generated the most comments from users was about the subject of brain fog. As we read through our users’ experiences and advice, we quickly saw that this is a huge challenge for people from all different walks of life. Here are some important things to know about brain fog and some strategies you can use if you find yourself dealing with it!
What is brain fog?
Brain fog is what we call it when someone is experiencing mental sluggishness. Usually, people notice brain fog when experiencing high levels of forgetfulness and confusion and having trouble focusing. Many people describe the experience of brain fog as feeling “spaced out” or lacking mental clarity.
While brain fog isn’t technically a medical term, it can be very helpful in helping people to identify and communicate the symptoms associated with this term. It is a term that the people in your life and even your doctor will easily understand if you need to describe your mental sluggishness.
Why is brain fog a problem?
Brain fog can negatively impact your productivity. When you are feeling mentally sluggish, it can make everyday tasks feel impossible. It can also impact your ability to engage socially and can affect others’ perceptions of you.
Many people are concerned with the effect that brain fog might have on their schooling and career in particular. Having trouble focusing or remembering things can be nerve-wracking, especially when your job is on the line. This often leads to even more stress for those experiencing brain fog.
What can I do to prevent brain fog?
There are a variety of ways to prevent brain fog or to deal with it if you are already feeling foggy. Here are some of the steps you can take:
Many of our users indicate that getting adequate sleep is the most important strategy for preventing brain fog, and research backs this up. Sleep deprivation can cause memory problems and even problems with visual perception. If you want to understand how severe sleep deprivation can cause intense brain fog, consider this: according to the Sleep Foundation, driving while sleep-deprived can be equally as dangerous as driving drunk. If you aren’t getting enough sleep, consider reworking your schedule to prioritize sleep more.
Taking A Break
Taking a break can make all the difference if you notice yourself struggling to concentrate or think. Many people feel that they need to push themselves harder if they are experiencing brain fog. This is not the case, though! Think about it like this: if you were feeling hungry, that is a sign to eat. If you are feeling sleepy, it is a sign to sleep. Brain fog is oftentimes a sign that you need to give your mind the space to rest!
You don’t have to do something completely unproductive when giving your brain a break. If you are experiencing brain fog while working from home, taking some time to do some chores that don’t require mental exertion (like doing the dishes or folding laundry) can be just the reset you need to be able to vanquish your brain fog.
If you struggle with brain fog on a regular basis, putting systems into place can help combat the negative effects of brain fog. One of the most difficult parts of feeling mentally foggy is forgetting important things. By using tools like calendars, alarms, and lists, you can ensure that you are staying on top of things even when feeling foggy.
Find A Support System
Something that became clear to us when reading our user’s responses is that there can be a lot of stress and shame around experiencing brain fog. People report feeling embarrassed and upset about their brain fog and the effect it has on their lives.
Address Underlying Health Conditions
Many times brain fog is a symptom of another problem. It could be untreated ADHD, a vitamin deficiency, diabetes, or a host of other conditions at the root of your fogginess. If you are experiencing brain fog regularly, it might be a sign to talk to your doctor about potential root causes. Many of our users reported that after working with their doctors to solve underlying health conditions, their brain fog was cured.
Meditation can help to reduce brain fog and improve focus, especially when done consistently over a long period of time. It doesn’t take a lot out of your day, either! Even 5 or 10 minutes of meditation can make a world of a difference if you do it on a regular basis.
If you are feeling mentally sluggish, don’t be afraid to communicate this fact. Tell your coworkers, “I’m feeling a little foggy today, so I might take notes on what you are saying.” As long as you pair your explanation with some sort of idea for a solution, it shouldn’t be a problem, and it will help people understand where you are coming from.
Improve Your Mental Health Naturally
One of the best ways you can improve your mental health is by leaning into your support system. Unfortunately, doing this is oftentimes easier said than done. If you don’t already have a support system, there are ways to create one!
At Alike Health, we have developed an app dedicated completely to connecting you with a tribe of people who are struggling with similar health challenges. Through discussions with others, you can find both solace and solutions to some of your toughest problems.
Many people who are dealing with chronic brain fog are also dealing with other health stressors. Talking to people who are facing similar challenges can help you figure out the strategies you need to improve your condition. It can help you to feel less alone, to know that others are struggling with the same problems!
What if I can’t afford mental health help?
Unfortunately, many treatments for mental health are prohibitively expensive. If you are struggling with brain fog on a daily basis, you might be uncertain about the next steps toward improving your mental clarity. One thing you can do when dealing with brain fog is lean into your community for support.
Here at Alike Health, we believe that everyone deserves a safe space to discuss mental health, without cost barriers. This is why we keep our app completely free.
Download Alike Today!
Work with others to find community and become the best version of yourself. Brain fog can feel embarrassing, but when you realize that many other people also deal with it, overcoming it can become a lot more manageable.