Friday, June 20, 2008

I'm Not Stupid, It's My Thyroid!

by Elodia Strain
The following is a true story related to me by a friend.

“I knew something was wrong.

I couldn’t concentrate at work or when doing things like reading a book for fun. I was in a mental fog when I ran errands like going to the grocery store.

I’d just finished a round of a toxic drug that had put me into a medically-induced menopause, and I knew my hormones were completely out of whack as a result. My metabolism, which had always been fast, was suddenly sluggish, and I counted my calories, exercised like crazy, and drove myself nuts trying to get things back to normal—to no avail. What’s worse, I was hungry all the time, like my body wasn’t using the food it was getting properly and wanted more.

I was swollen and retaining water and “that time of the month” was miserably long and heavy. Then I, an active 20-something who eat no dairy or red meat, found out that my cholesterol was slightly high all of a sudden with no explanation.

And you know what, I knew what was wrong. Somehow, I just knew.

For a year and a half I told my doctor my symptoms and said I suspected a thyroid problem. He didn’t agree. I showed him a book I found at the library that listed my exact symptoms as those of hypothyroidism.

He treated me like I was a woman who didn’t like that I had gained weight and thought thyroid medication would make me skinny again.

I found another doctor and requested the tests. The results were exactly what I suspected: Hypothyroidism.

I’ve learned to listen to my body, and I believe any woman experiencing the symptoms associated with thyroid disease (or any disease for that matter) should be taken seriously. Especially after she’s been through a hormonally-taxing event in her life such as pregnancy, menopause, (or in my case medically-induced menopause.)

These days, now that I’m being treated, I’m starting to feel better. I can focus better, my appetite has decreased to a proper level, and my metabolism is back up. I’m not 100% yet, but I’m on my way."

I share this story, blog readers, because I love that the blog community is a place where we can learn from others' experiences. I learned from my friend’s experience, and I thought maybe someone else might too.

Additional Resources: The Thyroid Solution: A Revolutionary Mind-Body Program That Will Help You by Arem Ridha

Living Well with Hypothyroidism: What Your Doctor Doesn't Tell You... That You Need to Know (Revised Edition) by Mary J. Shomon


Marcia Mickelson said...

I'm sorry you had to go through all that, but I'm glad you finally figured out what it was. I hate it when doctors don't listen to you. I'm glad you went to another one. You're right about us needing to trust our bodies despite what those who supposedly know everything think. I hope things continue to get better for you.

Tamra Norton said...

It's so important to trust our own instincts, especially relating to health issues, not only for ourselves, but our children. I hope your friend is feeling better.