Why am I yawning a lot?

Written by megan smith
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Why am I yawning a lot?
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If you yawn once in a while, it is nothing to worry about. Periodic and infrequent yawning is usually the cause of fatigue. If you are yawning excessively, however, it may be cause for concern. If you are yawning more than a few times per hour or it is getting in the way of your daily activities--including work, eating, sleeping or talking--you may be suffering from a health condition that is causing you to yawn. Monitor your yawning and any other symptoms to determine the cause.

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What Defines Excessive Yawning?

If you yawn once in a while, it is nothing to worry about. Periodic and infrequent yawning is usually the cause of fatigue. If you are yawning excessively, however, it may be cause for concern. If you are yawning more than a few times per hour or it is getting in the way of your daily activities--including work, eating, sleeping or talking--you may be suffering from a health condition that is causing you to yawn. Monitor your yawning and any other symptoms to determine the cause.

Conditions With Excessive Yawning Symptoms

Causes of excessive yawning may be due to a vasovagal reaction, which is when the vagus nerve is stimulated. Sometimes there may be no reason the nerve is stimulated. Other times, the nerve may be stimulated due to a heart condition, such as a heart attack or aortic dissection. If you are on medications, yawning may be a side effect of one of these medications. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressant medications, such as Prozac, for example, can cause excessive yawning and is considered to be a side effect of the medication.

When to See a Doctor

Excessive yawning can be harmless, but it can also be the cause of a dangerous underlying disorder, including heart attack and other heart problems. If you are not on antidepressant medications or other medications that list yawning as a side effect, see your doctor as soon as possible. He or she will ask you about your yawning, including the symptoms, and their duration, and any patterns regarding your yawning throughout the day. Your doctor will narrow down the symptoms to determine the underlying cause of the excessive yawning.

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