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What are Some Reasons That I Frequently get Sick?

Tricia Christensen
Updated May 17, 2024
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If you frequently get sick, there may be a variety of reasons that are causing your illnesses. Seeing a doctor may be a good first step, particularly if your illnesses are of long duration or are occurring on a regular basis, but there are also some things you can look to in your life to see if your lifestyle or other causes may be influencing relatively constant contagion. Much also depends upon what type of illnesses you’re having.

When you get sick with respiratory illnesses or nasal congestion that don’t involve fever you might actually be experiencing allergies part of the time or all of it. Allergies that are untreated can seem very much like colds, and they can be pretty miserable to live with. They may also contribute to conditions like asthma or make people more prone to be asthmatic when they get common colds and flus. If you notice your illnesses seem to be worse when you go outside, or when you come home after a day at work, indoor or outdoor allergies can be the cause. Food allergies, especially minor ones, might make you feel unwell most of the time.

When you’ve ruled out allergies as a potential cause of illness, you may want to evaluate the conditions of your life. If you smoke, you will probably frequently get sick, and respiratory illnesses are likely to increase the more and the longer you smoke, since you kill off tiny cilia (hairs in the nose and lungs) that help to resist disease. Smokers also typically have low iron levels or anemia, which can make you more susceptible to germs. Excessive drinking on a regular basis might also be a reason you're frequently sick, since alcohol is essentially a poison that causes dehydration and can make your body weaker.

Poor diet can be another reason that you're frequently sick. Lack of essential nutrients may make your body less fit to fight germs. Eating a healthy, balanced diet and hydrating your body with plenty of water can help your immune system be stronger. Yet even with the best diet there are some other reasons why you may frequently get sick.

For instance, if you are a teacher and fairly new to teaching young children, you are likely to experience more respiratory illnesses. Parents of young children will also be more at risk for illness due to a fairly constant level of germ exposure in their homes. Though you may have evolved immunity to many respiratory illnesses that are out there, this immunity may not last for a lifetime, and there are so many germs your body has yet to encounter. Greater exposure to people who are sick on a regular basis often results in greater chance of illness.

Other factors that may might make you get sick include high levels of stress, undiagnosed depression, poor hygiene habits (especially not washing the hands after using the bathroom), low thyroid function, and conditions that affect the immune system like HIV, lupus, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, or rheumatoid arthritis. If you are getting sick often and don’t seem to be able to get this under control via lifestyle changes, or if you do feel run down, depressed or tired most of the time, this may be medical, and your answer to why you're frequently sick may be available through your physician.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen , Writer
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGeek contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.

Discussion Comments

By anon935404 — On Feb 25, 2014

People asking for medical help here aren't going to get any. Go to a doctor.

As for the dog/apartment issue, it could be mold. It could be lower air quality in the building. It could be an allergy to the carpets. It could be a fluke and they just happened to get sick after they moved (moving and change is stressful). If they aren't allergic to dogs, it's not likely it's the dogs.

Indoor/outdoor dogs can bring in allergens on their coats so it's even less likely now that they are causing the issue if it wasn't an issue before.

By anon357202 — On Dec 02, 2013

My husband has been sick with constant colds for 10 months now. He was treated with antibiotics four times. He is not getting better. He coughs at night, he has lost lots of weight, he has difficulty breathing and no energy. Help.

By anon343497 — On Jul 30, 2013

I get sick sometimes when I am just lying down, just walking around or after I eat sometimes. I immediately get sick out of nowhere What can cause this?

By anon324803 — On Mar 12, 2013

I feel nauseated all the time and have a scratchy feeling in my throat. But my children are sick and they have had the flu and I feel run down and tired. I am having problems concentrating in school and on other aspects of my life. I feel tired all the time I don't feel like doing anything at times, not even spend time with my husband, either. Is there anything that I can do to help this matter?

By anon241535 — On Jan 19, 2012

Bedroom sicknesses are one variety. Unkempt bedrooms result in dust accumulations, dust mite population build up, droppings of dust mites are airborne, pets and their furs add to airborne aggravations, sweat, fragrances off perfume bottles, formaldehyde from wall paints, evaporating fumes off furniture varnishes and so much more make a terrible mix that hurts the nose and the respiratory system.

So many toxins and pollutants in the air, plus all the droppings in the mattress that get stuck to our sweaty skin causes allergies. So much more can be said about indoor pollution with the bedroom and all of them give rise to all sorts of consequences. Bedroom cleaning, and mattress upkeep is a regular must.

By anon232330 — On Nov 30, 2011

Vitamin D deficiency is also a major cause of sickness for many people living north, where in the winter everyone remains inside and receives virtually no Vitamin D. Vaccinations have not statistically shown to eliminate the probably of getting sick and are a health risk due to the 25 micrograms of mercury present inside each shot. Vitamin D supplements have statistically shown to reduce the duration and likelihood of getting sick by ten fold.

By anon157425 — On Mar 02, 2011

I have a friend who lives with two large dogs. Until recently they were indoor/outdoor dogs. Recently she moved to an apartment. Both large dogs are now indoor dogs.

Since moving to the apartment she and her son have been sick, respiratory issues, coughing sneezing, wheezing, sinus infections, ear infections etc. I think it is related to the dogs, the carpet and the small space.

She does not want to acknowledge that his is possible since they have had the dogs for a long time. I need to find some research to support my suspicion. Anyone know of any?

By anon124066 — On Nov 04, 2010

anon54123: my mom got me to stop by telling me that if i got sick, no one will be able to take care of them. so i stopped letting them into my bed. buy the pets cute beds, if their bed looks more comfortable and cozy than hers, she won't feel bad about keeping them off the bed. hope it helps.

plus, trimming the pets' hair, keeping it clean and getting rid of the carpet in the bedroom,if there is one, will also help probably.

By anon118377 — On Oct 14, 2010

The problems your daughter is having, I have experienced first hand. Having been raised with pets, I felt that I could not live without them! I had guinea pigs and a dog for many years, before becoming very, very sick with bronchitis like symptoms for a good year of my life.

After all of the bronchitis treatments failed (it was so bad I was given about five different inhalers) and would cough until I was throwing up, my doctor sent me for allergy tests. Guinea pig was the highest score possible in terms of reactivity. Dogs and cats were second on the list. My doctor advised us to get rid of them, although I had had them for years with no prior problems.

It is possible that your body can develop allergies and is worst case scenario when it is something you love. My mom ended up selling our house, as they said that the dander (which is actually what you are allergic to even though people believe it is there fur) would be everywhere in the house, through the heating system etc.

Long story short, I am not advising you to sell your house, but having animals in your bedroom is the worst for a person with allergies. Also carpets are a huge carrier of dust, dander and allergens.

If you can't get rid of the pets, keep them out of sleeping areas, get rid of old carpets (laminate or hardwood is best) and tell your daughter to wash her hands after handling your pets.

These all sound fairly simple but can make a huge difference in your daughters quality of life. I hope that is of some help. Best of luck!

By anon54123 — On Nov 27, 2009

I need help. My daughter has two dogs and two cats. She has been mildly allergic to cats since childhood. She lets the cats and the two dogs lie on her bed and also if they want, they jump on the bed to sleep, at times walking up alongside her on the pillow.

She gets sick frequently, has the beginnings of R.A., is tired at times, gets bouts of coughing often (flu-like symptoms), and does have mild asthma. I can see that the animals don't help!

But I need her to realize that she should at least keep them out of the bedroom. She teaches so she is even more prone to illness. Any suggestions that I can send her. Of course she loves her animals very much, I understand this, but her health is more important.

Tricia Christensen

Tricia Christensen


With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGeek contributor, Tricia...
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