Autistic fatigue is a state of extreme mental, physical and/or sensory exhaustion.

When the body’s resources are overworked, it can result in fatigue. This can then lead on to burnout.

Burnout is the body’s response to being in a prolonged state of stress and frustration.

Although fatigue and burnout can happen to anyone, autistic people are more likely to be affected by this.

It is often the result of doing more than you can cope with for too long and can be an immediate response to something, or be caused by a build up of things over time.

Some of the main causes of autistic fatigue and burnout include:

Symptoms of fatigue graphic

Putting strategies in place can help you to overcome and/or recover from autistic fatigue and burnout.

Read our follow-on article ‘Autistic fatigue and burnout: Coping strategies’ for things you can do to help yourself put strategies in place.

For now, here is a quick meditation guide which may be a good starting place to help you relax.

If you are struggling with autistic fatigue and/or burnout, speak to your GP to get some help and advice.

Useful links and resources to support with autistic fatigue and/or burnout

Buckets for Brains- A comic about burnout

Buckets for brainsClick here to view the Buckets for Brains comic.








Dr Pooky Knightsmith Podcast: Pooky Ponders 

Click here to listen to this podcast.

Ideas on how to recover from autistic burnout

Click here to discover ideas on how to recover from autistic burnout.

Advice for parents and carers of autistic children

Click here to discover advice for parents and carers of autistic children.

If you are having thoughts about harming yourself or suicide, it is important to speak to someone, contact one of the services below and get some help:


Whatever you’re going through you can call us any time, from any phone for free on:

116 123


The UK’s first 24/7 crisis text service, provides free, confidential, 24/7 text message support in the UK for anyone who is struggling to cope. This service is free on all major mobile networks, for anyone in crisis, anytime.

Text SHOUT to 85258.

Central Access Point

If you are in need of urgent NHS mental health support, you should call the Mental Health Central Access Point which is open 24/7.

Call: 0808 800 3302

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