'Be kinder than necessary;
For everyone you meet is
Fighting some kind of battle.'
What I have done is share information on hypothyroidism at the encouragement of some of my collegues. I am not a medical professional but am a master's level vocational rehab counselor (Masters in Counseling, not English). I will share some information I know and had learned about hypothyroidism. Why do I create these web pages?Read a story that illustrates why.
What is Hypothyroidism? It is basically when your thyroid gland no longer produces the hormones thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3) due to any of a variety of reasons including injury to thyroid, disease of thyroid, iodine deficiency (not likely in the US due to iodine added to table salt) or surgery on thyroid gland (ex. to remove cancer or over corrected hyperthyroid gland). As a result your pituitary gland increases the production of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) which stimulates (or tries) the thyroid to produce more T4 & T3. However the thyroid gland does not produce the T4 & T3 which the body needs for regulating metabolism and other bodily functions.
What is Hashimoto's disease? What is thyroiditis? These are the conditions I want to focus on because there appears to be very little information on the internet on these conditions. I will share what I have found in hopes that it may help others looking for answers about these conditions.
Hashimoto's Disease occurs when there is an alteration in the body's immune system which causes the body to develop antibodies to thyroid cell components. These components are thyroid peroxidase (TPO) and thyroglobulin (TG). You could have antibodies to either or both components. Generally the onset is slow but not detected in the early progression of the disease. It results in progressive destruction of the thyroid gland. The person may experience symptoms of hyperthyroidism at first when the thyroid may actually produce too much thyroid hormones. As the thyroid antibodies attack the thyroid the person will develop symptoms of hypothyroidism. Hashimoto's eventually leads to hypothyroidism. Hashimoto's Disease is often referred to as Hashimoto's thyroiditis, autoimmune thyroiditis, lymphadenoid goiter, struma lymphomatosa, and chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis. I have read there is evidence of genetic predisposition to Hashimoto's Disease and apparently about 25% of people with Hashimoto's Disease also have another type of autoimmune disease (ex. pernicious anemia, diabetes, adrenal insufficiency). People can develop Hashimoto's disease at any age however it most commonly develops in women ages 30 to 50. It was first identified in 1912.
There are several symptoms of hypothyroidism according to medical science. These include fatigue, depression, weight gain,(fluid retention), cold intolerance, hair gets fragile and sheds (hair loss),altered menstrual cycles, infertility, constipation, dry skin and may become thicken, goiter which may be nodular, drooping eyelids, facial swelling, and memory problems (mental processes become dull). Other symptoms are blood pressure may be low, muscle aches and/or weakness, joint stiffness, clumsiness, lethargy (just don't feel like doing anything, I describe it as couch potatoe syndrome. You don't necessarily feel bad, just don't want to do anything but "veg out".) and over active reflexes. This I just learned is due to slow reflex return. (Ex. When the doctor checks your knee reflex (or you accidently bump it), your leg goes out farther than what it use to before you got hypothyroidism.) When the T4 level is low the cholesterol level goes up. (I've found oats and exercise really do work to keep the cholesterol level down to normal levels.) These are common symptoms of Hashimoto's Disease and hypothyroidism. These symptoms are generally deminished or alleviated with proper medical treatment. As with most medical conditions, not everyone diagnosed with Hashimoto's disease or hypothyroidism will experience each symptom listed to the same degree.
There are other symptoms of hypothyroidism reported by alternative medicine. These include being cold when other people are comfortable, cold hands and feet, tiredness (even exhaustion), heart palpitations, nervousness, dry coarse skin, slow speech, swelling of face and eyelids, thick tongue, coarse hair, loss of hair, pale skin, gain of weight, labored difficult breathing, swollen feet, loss of appetite, hoarseness of voice, any kind of menstrual problems, brittle nails, slow movement, poor memory, inability to think clearly, depression, frequent headaches, and loss of interest in sex. These symptoms are due to the slowing down of the body's metabolism. The heart rate is slower resulting in drop in blood pressure. This result in slower circulation which in turn causes the cold feet and hands. Body wounds tend to heal slower than before. Frequent headaches occur, energy and endurance is low and digestion slows down. Hair then becomes lifeless and falls out more easily. Thinking is sluggish and memory is poor. Many of these symptoms are common to the ones reported by the medical profession yet some are different.
Generally treatment for hypothyroidism is hormone replacement such as Synthroid or Levothyroid. This supplements the T4 which the thyroid gland no longer produces the amount the body needs for metabolism and other bodily functions. However the thyroid no longer produces the amount of T3 the body needs as well. Generally the medical community believe the body converts the T4 provided by the medication to T3 to the degree the body needs. However there is some research supporting the need to supplement the T3 as well in small amounts in addition to the T4. In this case the T4 dose is decreased some and a small dose of T3 is given daily. Alternative medicine suggests kelp food supplements to help nourishes and supports the thyroid gland.
I have included information here on what I have found on Hashimoto's Disease I have gathered from various sources. I will also be providing links to some of these sources as well as to my other pages sharing more specific information on various aspects of Hashimoto's Disease.
MY story living with Hashimoto's Thyroiditis (and perimenopause)
Families-First.com - Education and Family Center "HotFlash and the Women's Health Center was created as a safe haven for women to share and learn from each other. We discuss many women's health topics in addition to perimenopause and menopause. We have articles in our Health-Bytes section that will help you live a happierand healthier life." Ladies in your 30's may want to check this out especially about perimenopause! Some of those "querky symptoms" may be simply due to hormonal changes!
My reason for living How I make it through the hard times and keep standing by what I believe.
For whatever God says to us is full of living power: it is sharper than the sharpest dagger, cutting swift and deep into our innermost thoughts and desires with all their parts, exposing us for what we really are. He knows about everyone, everywhere. Everything about us is bare and wide open to the all-seeing eyes of our living God; nothing can be hidden from him to whom we must explain all that we have done.
But Jesus the Son of God is our great High Priest who has gone to heaven itself to help us; therefore let us never stop trusting him. This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, since he had the same temptations we do, though he never once gave way to them and sinned. So let us come boldly to the very throne of God and stay there to receive his mercy and to find grace to help us in our times of need.
Symptoms of hypothyroidism Explaination and common symptoms of hypothyroidism.
The Hashimoto's cognitive problems I experienced I have included specific symptoms and explainations of each symptom as well as some factors and conditions that seem to effect the symptoms. I also have links to sites on depression, stress management, coping skills & support sites for both the cognitive & emotional aspects of hypothyroidism.
Research & Resource Links Links to other web sites that contain information on Hashimoto's Thyroiditis. I am constantly adding new links. Research is beginning to show a connection between Hashimoto's Disease and several other diseases.
Other Conditions Causing "Symptoms" Those hard to diagnose conditions.
Attention Deficit Disorder & the Brain I've added this section due to the fact many of the "cognitive problems" may be related to ADD. I'll be adding links to research more information on the brain and neuropsychology. The brain not working right can be very frustrating & depressing but friends can do things to uplift our spirits.Even Now.
Memory Cross is a very creative folding card that kids and adults find fascinating. We have developed three applications for this card:
To share the Gospel
To teach Bible verses
For use with craft activities
Currently available for purchase on the Internet at www.memorycross.com, Memory Cross, Inc., owned by Andy Lambert, Bill Gibson and Mike Vitamvas, invites you to join their affiliate program.
List of doctors Doctors recommended by visitors to this site. Have you found a really good doctor you'ld like to tell others about? If so visit this page and add your doctor. Looking for a good doctor? Check here to see if any visitors from your area recommends a doctor.
Lab Tests, Drugs & Technical Medical Information Information on lab tests commonly done with thyroid disease including information on what the tests are looking for and lab values. Thyroid drug names and other technical medical information on hypothyroidism and related information.
Zoloft, Zocor & other medications adverse effects Medications can cause adverse effects interacting with each other.
The Art of Getting Well A Five-Step Plan for Maximizing Health When You Have a Chronic Illness "Studies of stressful life events - job loss, divorce, relocation, death of a family member etc. - consistently show higher rates of all types of disease following such stressors. To these, we add all our maladaptive responses to life's insults: bad posture, attitudes, or diets, unacknowledged emotions, lack of exercise, overwork, hurry, various forms of self-abuse and addiction. All of these injurious behaviors were learned somewhere or adopted before we knew better, for reasons that were necessary, or at least seemed like good ideas at the time.
Most diseases, then, except for overwhelming infections or pure genetic defects, arise from numbers of factors stretching back through our lives and heredity, and outward through all our social and environmental influences, a web of causation that we can never completely sort out. For various reasons, our bodies (and minds) do not get their needs met, and they react by getting sick. Our bodies weren't made to last forever, and years of wear and tear eventually cause breakdowns.
Slow down. Save some energy for our bodies and lives, instead of giving every last ounce to work, worry, other demands, or entertainment.
Make a change. Change something in our lives that damages us. No matter how small, any successful change builds our self-confidence and makes the next change easier.
Get help. We can't do it alone; life is a cooperative effort. Learn to find and ask for help.
Value our bodies and our lives. Listen to our bodies and treat them with respect. Fill our lives with more pleasure, love, and reasons to live.
Grow up. Educate ourselves, take responsibility, be assertive. Accept ourselves the way we are, but don't give up on getting better."
As I added this info I realized I had learned to do these same things due to problems related to the hypothyroidism, Hashimoto's thyroiditis, cognitive problems, depression and simply my body's adverse reaction to stress.
Misc. Links & Info
McAfee FreeScan Check your computer to see if you have any viruses. It takes a long time to do so if you have an hour to kill go for it. It's a good idea to check your computer for viruses from time to time especially if you are having a lot of problems with it.
Zone Alarm A free firewall you can download.
Merriam-Webster Online Need to look up a word in the dictionary?
The Signs of the Times West Nile Virus, Pneumonia, and other "diseases" and "syndromes" that are on the increase today. I've also include toxins & other environmental adverse effects.
an inspirational story "Breakfast at McDonalds"
Joni Eareckson Tada who is the founder and president of Joni and Friends, an organization accelerating Christian ministry in the disability community.
Marriage & Family Tips and information to help strengthen your marriage and family bonds.
Take time to smell the flowers Information for people who have a busy life.
Fix your thoughts on what is true and good and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely, and dwell on the fine, good things in others. Think about all you can praise God for and be glad about. Phil 4:8
Inspirations from Family & Friends I have included several inspirational poems & sayings I have received from family & friends via email. If you have an inspirational emails that you would like me to include here just email me & I can easily add it.
Andrea's Israel Trip A friend of mine's missionary trip to Israel.
Please keep your precious little poodle puppies away from big dogs even if the larger dog is a loving part of the family. They can suddenly turn on the little helpless puppy with one mean bit.
Biomarkers of Risk of Parkinson Disease information about this study, enable you to register to participate, and let you supply anonymous information about risk factors you may have for developing Parkinson Disease
Wall Printing This is my brother's company which started out in the basement of his father-in-law.
Memory Cross offers program to help memorize and learn scriptures.
Share your love, prayers and support with a boy or girl who lives in poverty.
Children are waiting now.
Angel Food Ministries A food ministry with a servant's heart
Chef2Chef Want to get some good recipes? Love to cook? Check out the site.
Jason's Deli They have some big sandwiches as well as some good spuds & salads.
Ten Thousand Villages I came across this store while on vacation and found it very unique. People from small villages make these gifts.
Pray for America.
TED.com Riveting talks by remarkable people, free to the world.