(nb. The experience below was originally featured in the ThyroidUK website - we've included it as an example in the blogs section for the test stage of the healthunlocked group for ThyroidUK)
I am a 26 year old student nurse who can now actually think clearly enough to study! However, I struggle on a regular basis to keep myself feeling well, energetic and rid myself of horrible side effects of hypothyroidism such as constipation and bloating.
Before my gastro consultant realised I had an underactive thyroid, I had struggled with every day life to the point where I thought if this is my life I don’t think I can go on.
Along with the side effects I was very puffy and swollen but constantly (for years) under a specialist due to severe constipation which was causing health concern. I was experiencing a lot of anal bleeding at this time which meant numerous anal examinations.
One consultant told me to drink green tea and that a girl of my age should not be constipated. My GP at the time told me I was fat - all very helpful comments!
I hardly ever left the house and it started to affect my work and I took too many days off sick. For a while I left work completely and my partner supported me! I was half dead!! Just the thought of doing something made me want to sleep. I woke up tired and fell asleep hours after getting up, taking any opportunity to sleep!
Doctors checked my thyroid levels via blood tests and were sharp in reporting nothing was wrong! I myself suggested having the test because many females in my family are sufferers.
Then, luckily, a great consultant treating me for constipation started my treatment of levothyroxine. 3 months later I was discharged from his care because I didn’t need it!
I suffer from IBS due to the hypothyroidism but there was no need for treatment regarding a problem which had taken over my life! So now when I get my results I don’t have confidence in my doctors and I am still symptomatic in the way of feeling washed out by the afternoon, sore and dry skin and puffy eyes. Therefore, (after always having a good diet) I am trying to improve this by eating foods which are high in iodine (which is good for thyroid activity).
I have to say it is very difficult to find out what foods are good for this and what are not. A specific, easily accessible information book or web page is needed for those suffering who, I know, spend hours obsessing over the internet looking for ways to improve their lives.
There seems to be a lot of unclear information out there. We need professional clear cut info.
I am always terrified that there will come a time when I fall back in my studies because I can’t think clearly and am too tired.
At first ,I felt as though I was a new person, I have hair! I have eyebrows! I can think without feeling I’m going to fall flat on my face!
However, life is still an effort in keeping myself energetic and without handy, clear information it’s a big effort. I now have bad reactions to Beechams (once leading to me going to A and E) and when drinking even a sip of alcohol since being on levothyroxine and can’t find much info on any of this either. Am wondering if any others have found the same thing?