Malaise is not the name of any disease; thus, you may never have heard of it before now. Malaise is a word that describes any of the following feelings or symptoms:

  • A feeling of discomfort
  • A feeling of overall weakness
  • A feeling like you have a sickness
  • Simply not feeling well

These often occur with a feeling of fatigue and an inability to go back to feeling healthy through proper rest.

Sometimes, you may not know your about to have a malaise because it happens suddenly. Other times, malaise may develop gradually and continue to disturb for an extended period.

While you may understand the symptoms you are feeling, the reason for your malaise can be difficult to point out because it can be as a result of so many conditions.

However, once your doctor can diagnose the cause of your malaise, treating it can help you feel much better.

Causes of malaise

Medical Conditions

There are several possible causes of malaise. Whenever your body undergoes a form of disruption, such as a disease, an injury, or trauma, it is not uncommon to experience discomfort. The causes that are listed below represent a few of the many possible reasons.

Make sure you do not jump to conclusions about the possible cause of your malaise until you have visited your doctor.

If you are dealing with a musculoskeletal condition, it is not uncommon to often suffer from a general sense of unease and discomfort. Also, malaise is often a symptom of different types of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis.

Also, acute viral disorders, like the ones listed below, can cause malaise:

Chronic fatigue syndrome is an exceptionally complex disorder that is characterized by an overall feeling of pain, malaise, and fatigue.

Mental health conditions, such as anxiety and depression, can often cause malaise. However, it’s also possible for a person to start feeling the symptoms of anxiety and depression if they have malaise.

It can be somewhat challenging to find out if the depression or malaise occurred first. Other causes of malaise can include:

  • The flu
  • Parasitic infections
  • Cancer
  • Mononucleosis
  • Diabetes
  • Adrenal gland dysfunction


Several medications can put a person at risk for malaise, and they include:


Certain medications that are used for the treatment of heart disease and high blood pressure, specifically those beta-blockers.

certain medications that are used for the treatment of psychiatric conditions


Some drugs may not be responsible for your malaise on their own, but when you combine them with other medications, they can lead to malaise.

Malaise and Fatigue

Fatigue often happens along with malaise. When you are experiencing malaise, it is not uncommon for you to often feel lethargic or exhausted in addition to a general feeling of being unwell.

Just like malaise, fatigue has several numbers of likely explanations. It can be as a result of illnesses, lifestyle factors, and certain medications.

When should I see my doctor?

Consult your doctor if you have an overwhelming feeling of malaise or if you notice that your malaise lasts longer than a week (seven days). You should also talk to your doctor if you notice other symptoms accompany your malaise.

It is crucial that you are your own health advocate if you’re dealing with malaise. It is quite hard to find out the cause of the malaise. Being proactive about getting a diagnosis will go a long way to help your condition.

Speak up, ask questions, and take note of changes and symptoms. Do not hold back if you feel like you have to continue a conversation about your health with your doctor.

How is malaise diagnosed?

Your doctor will need to perform a physical examination on you to make a diagnosis. They will search for an apparent physical condition that may likely be the cause of your malaise or may give clues about its possible cause.

The doctor will also ask a few questions about your malaise. Try as much as possible to be open, and be prepared to provide details like the approximate time when the malaise began and whether the malaise has been coming and going, or if it is continuously present.

Your doctor may also likely ask some questions about additional symptoms you may be experiencing, recent travel, any challenges you may be having in finishing daily activities, and the possible reasons why you think you are dealing with these challenges.

They will have to ask you what medications you have been taking if you are a drug or alcohol user and whether you have been dealing with any known health challenges or conditions.

If they are not sure what could be causing you to have a malaise, your doctor may order that some tests be done to confirm or rule out one or more possible diagnoses. These tests may include X-rays, blood tests, and other diagnostic tools.

Treatment options for malaise

As stated earlier, malaise is not a medical condition to worry about in and of itself. Therefore, the treatment you will get will be focused on addressing the root cause of the problem.

It is unlikely to correctly predict what this treatment will entail, especially because malaise can be a result of a wide range of conditions. That is why testing and an examination is necessary. This information obtained from the tests can help your doctor make a correct diagnosis.

Treatment for the reason of your malaise can go a long way to put the feeling under control and prevent it from getting overwhelming. You can reduce your malaise by:

Malaise can be challenging to prevent, especially because it comes with many possible causes.

It is essential to keep a record of your mental and physical well-being as it can help you pinpoint the root causes and the triggers of your malaise. Try always to keep a journal to assist with tracking your malaise.

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