As May 25th is recognised as World Thyroid Day I thought I would share my experiences of being diagnosed with hypothyroidism- Hashimoto’s Disease.
Lets start from the beginning
Over the Christmas break I was in a really low slump. To put it simply, I was depressed. Nothing could shake the bad mood and by the end of the holidays I had had enough and so had Matt (my husband). Usually going back to work helps my mood but the term started and I was still depressed. I never wanted to do anything, I was tired and cranky all the time and started pulling away from friends.
It wasn’t until I was experiencing daily headaches for over two weeks that I went to a doctor.
I explained to him that I had been having daily headaches and was tired and down all the time so he did a blood test.
At my follow up appointment he told me I needed to go on medication straight away for Hashimoto’s. He printed out through the fact sheets about hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s for me and we went through the symptoms. Little did I know I had been experiencing more than one symptom but always shrugged it off as being something else.
1) I was tired ALL the time, I could sleep for 12 hours and still be tired.
2) I had a rash between my fingers that no matter what I did wouldn’t leave.
3) I was depressed.
4) I had gained 6kgs in the space of around 3 months, despite eating relatively healthy and regularly going to the gym.
5) My joints and muscles are often sore and swollen.
6) My memory was shot. I often pride myself on my memory but lately I have been forgetting EVERYTHING and my concentration levels had dropped.
Some of these symptoms I had been dealing with for years, others, not so long.
For anyone who doesn’t know, Hashimoto’s is an autoimmune disease where immune system cells attack the thyroid gland, which essentially slows down the thyroid’s ability to produce hormones.
After being diagnosed I was referred for an ultrasound on my thyroid which revealed a number of small nodules all over my thyroid, which also doesn’t help its ability to work haha
Being told you have an autoimmune disease leaves you with a mixture of feelings. Initially I was glad to find out, it meant that I could start taking medication and hopefully reduce some of my symptoms. I was/am excited to finally be able to start feeling like a normal human being again.
On the other hand though I am now stuck taking medication for life. I get that my situation could be a lot worse but it is still a lot to take in.
At the moment I am currently on 100mg of thyroxin and take thyroid medication to help my iodine levels. I am still in the process of finding out what amount of medication I need and will have to have more blood tests until my levels are at a level my doctor is happy with.
I am still tired all the time, I have days where I don’t want to get out of bed and after a long day I feel like what I imagine an 80-year-old riddled with arthritis would feel but I am getting there. I am taking it day by day and trying to be grateful that I am on the road to feeling normal again.
The important thing is to listen to your body. If something doesn’t feel right, go to the doctor. 1 in 10 people suffer with some form of thyroid disease and often it can go unnoticed. Speak to your doctor, explain your symptoms and ask for a blood test to check your thyroid.
I don’t know how long I had been living with this disease and I am so glad I went to the doctor when I did, even if part of my brain was telling me that I was just being a hypochondriac.
If something doesn’t feel right, speak up.
Please feel free to ask me anything if you have any questions. I’m very open to discussing thyroid issues and want to help anyone who feels like they might be suffering from a thyroid disease.
I am also willing to meet others with thyroid disease to discuss our experiences, anyone and everyone, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Thanks for stopping by 🙂