Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Hi, I'm Mrs Doughball and I have an Underactive Thyroid..

I used to look out on days as cold and damp as today and want to hide my head under the duvet, it wasn't uncommon that I'd even go to bed virtually fully clothed in an attempt to keep warm. Studying was a nightmare, at University I was continually being cautioned against burning both ends of the candle..even when I was having early nights I was still exhausted. I found concentrating difficult, and where I'd previously been able to rapidly learn anything, I now found myself having to revise for hours. I can remember visiting my Mother a year before Boo was born and falling asleep while talking to her, she was less than amused and shook me awake exclaiming she couldn't believe she had such a lazy child! As for my weight, that suddenly became a battle, I had never needed to diet I was fit and active maintaining a size 12 easily, but suddenly..the weight crept on. I assumed it was all part of growing old!

I was diagnosed with an Under active Thyroid, 3 months after giving birth to Boo. Initially the Doctors had been convinced I was suffering from depression following a rather traumatic birth, but there were distinct physical symptoms which I had been suffering from for at least 3years which made me think there was maybe a little more to this. So, I went back and forth to the Doctor, in effect trying to prove I didn't need or want anti-depressants. I think they thought I was an attention seeker. In fact, no one took me too seriously until an episode while we were away on holiday which I later described  to my GP as pain in my stomach similar to that felt at the height of labour. At this point they decided to run a series of blood tests, to see if we could establish the cause. I can remember getting the phone call from my GP, and her explaining that my thyroid levels were 'well below normal' and that while this is not uncommon in many women after pregnancy but my levels were so low I would now be on medication for the rest of my life. My initial reaction to this news was actually laughter, it was a combination of amazement and relief that there was something physically wrong with me which could be treated. 

Almost four years since being diagnosed, I'm struggling again. My levels are supposedly within the normal range, but I'm struggling. I feel as though I could sleep for a month, and at night I am so hot..seriously it's as though I'm in a sauna! It's depressing! Trying to explain it is even worse! When you try to explain to people why you don't want to meet for coffee as you feel exhausted they exclaim 'Well that's small children for you!', my response via this post is yes..I understand how tiring having small children is..that's how I feel when my thyroid is doing what is supposed to! Currently, it is playing up..and i feel as though I am a big ball of dough..yes..that is exactly how I feel..Doughy! So what to do? Perhaps I am not ill? Perhaps I am stressed? Maybe I'll wake up tomorrow and it'll be ok? Maybe?? Hmm, maybe I'll see a different GP!


  1. I know exactly how you feel. I have been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, which causes the same type of exhaust and fatigue. But if you do a bit of google searching you discover that there is a suggestion that Fibro could be related to an under-active thyroid (even if the test results look normal.)

    So when they told me I had a thyroid problem last year, I was rather hopeful. Taking a tablet and being back to normal would be wonderful! (I've not been able to work for years.)

    Unfortunately they discovered I have an over-active thyroid. So I still have the fatigue and pain, but also had a racing heart and dizziness (and neither diagnosis explains why my hair falls out).

    You're also the third blogger I've run into the last few weeks who's having thyroid problems!

  2. Oh no :( I'm sorry to hear you're suffering too, several of my family members suffer with an overactive thyroid and one described wanting to lay down in the middle of the road whilst she was trying to cross it as she was too exhausted to get the rest of the way across! :( I'm sure I've heard someone else mention hair loss with thyroid problems, if I can remember who/where I'll let you know! Thyroid issues seem to cause such problems, and what help you get from your GP seems to vary dramatically dependant on who/where your GP is, some seem to brush it off as 'nothing' and others are very sympathetic. I must admit I was lucky to have been quite stable for almost 3 years, but things seem all over the place at the moment! Hope you get on an even keel again soon :)

  3. My wife has this and felt rough with it for years, by chance we met an American doctor who was a thyroid specialist on holiday and he told her that sometimes the low end of normal isn't enough to ask the Docs to try another 25mcg of thyroxine, and now she is back to her old self :)
    Hope you are back to normal soon too :) @psychicsheep