Hypothyroidism causes many of your bodily processes to slow down – and this includes digestion. When your thyroid isn’t producing enough hormones, it can’t activate the muscles lining your digestive tract to contract, causing your stool to move too slowly through your system. To alleviate constipation, check out these six tips The National Academy of Hypothyroidism recommends.
Almost died on Mother’s Day 2001 with almost no thyroid hormone in body. I was not eating, hair falling out, constipation but I went to ER after passed out [and] put in hospital because heart was having difficulty pumping blood to head. I think the constipation always reminds me its time for bloodwork!” – chattykathy25
I have bad circulation and constipation, along with the tiredness. – Renee J.
16. Inability to Regulate Temperature
One of the automatic functions the thyroid gland helps regulate is your internal temperature. Your internal temperature can fluctuate when your thyroid is overactive or underactive. Those with hypothyroidism, for instance, may feel cold all the time, even in a warm environment, due to a slower metabolism and lower body temperature. However, it’s important to note that low or high body temperature is not a reliable indicator of thyroid disease. A person can measure at 98.6°F and still be hyperthyroid or hypothyroid.
Difficulty regaining proper body temperature when too cold or overheated. – Victoria H.
My body’s inability to regulate temperature properly. I’m always freezing to the core with temperatures below 50, and feeling like I’m about to pass out (or actually passing out) in the heat. It stops me from doing a lot of activities in the winter and summer because I never know how my body’s going to react to a given temperature. If I travel, I always pack two outfits for each day as a just in case the weather fluctuates 5 degrees. – Lisa W.
I have extreme heat intolerance, even when my extremities might be cold from being hypo. Even at 76°F, if I try to do something like blow dry my hair – I’ll sweat faster than I can dry my hair! Living in a place where there is like four months straight of triple digit heat hasn’t been easy. – Meg B.
17. Muscle Weakness
Muscle weakness can accompany both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism, in addition to muscle pain, aching and stiffness (such as with peripheral neuropathy). Some people may experience hypothyroid or hyperthyroid myopathy, a muscle disease involving muscular weakness or wasting. Hyperthyroid myopathy typically affects muscles in the shoulders and hips, but may also involve the face, throat and respiratory muscles. Hypothyroid myopathy also tends to affect shoulder and hip muscles but can additionally cause a slowing of reflexes, muscle stiffness and muscle cramps.
I had a total thyroidectomy in 2010, due to Hashimoto’s causing multiple benign tumors on my thyroid, which caused a goiter. I was surprised to find out it contributed to my muscle weakness. My youngest daughter also has this disease, and in 2017 she was hospitalized for a week when her TSH went up to 390, and I was shocked when they told us this disease had briefly caused her organs to start shutting down during that time. Thankfully she is doing much better now, but there is so much that this disease causes, besides just attacking the thyroid. – Katie D.
Hypothyroidism with severe muscle weakness. Even though I was being treated with T4, I was still incredibly weak. I recently learned about Hoffman’s syndrome. It’s a rare (or so they say) complication of hypothyroidism that causes myopathy (muscular weakness), stiff muscles, etc. Since I started adding T3 to my treatment and my thyroid levels are optimal (rather than just in-range), I have much more strength now. (Read: Now I can brush my hair without needing to rest after). – Liberty W.
18. Eye Pain and Pressure
Thyroid eye disease is an autoimmune condition most commonly associated with hyperthyroidism/Graves’ disease, but it can occur in people with hypothyroidism or normally functioning thyroids as well. Thyroid eye disease can cause “staring” or bulging eyes, dry eyes, watery eyes, red eyes, sensitivity to light, blurred or double vision, pain in or behind the eye, swelling in the upper eyelids, or difficulty moving or closing the eye.
Pressure around eyes and sinuses. – Alan B.
So much pressure behind the eye sockets with Graves’. After a day on my computer at work, I’d drive home feeling like I had ground glass in my eyes. – Susan W.
Terrible acne from hormones not being right starting with thyroid. Eye pain [and] pressure and light sensitivity. – Stephanie L.
People with hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism have been known to experience symptoms of vertigo, dizziness and lightheadedness. One study found that vertigo affects two-thirds of people with hypothyroidism. Though episodes are usually brief, they can range in severity.
Vertigo! It’s so scary to experience disorienting dizziness out of nowhere and it’s tough never knowing when it will happen or how long it will last. – Jo A.
Depression and low mood are common symptoms of hypothyroidism. You may also experience difficulty enjoying things, tearfulness, loss of appetite and disturbed sleep. Depression may also develop if you are struggling with the emotional challenges of living with thyroid disease.
No one ever mentioned the link between depression and hypothyroidism. I googled it after my psychiatrist asked for my TSH and my T4 Free numbers from my last bloodwork. Even with medication my numbers are in the gutter. – Janet D.
I’m not good at taking my meds regularly and I always spiral into depression when I haven’t taken them for a while. I’m just tired, have a low mood and can’t be arsed to do anything. As soon as I start taking my meds again I feel better. – Malina M.
Studies have shown that thyroid dysfunction and headaches are linked, though it remains unclear whether thyroid disease causes headaches or vice versa. According to the International Headache Society, approximately 30 percent of people with hypothyroidism have headaches.
In addition to the ‘normal’ symptoms – excessive sweating, constant excessive fatigue, uncontrollable increased chronic migraines and tension headaches! – Heather G.
Cluster headaches… directly related to how much medication I’m taking even if my thyroid levels look normal. – Tina S.
22. Poor Wound Healing
Studies have shown that hypothyroidism may be associated with delayed wound healing, while hyperthyroidism may be associated with accelerated wound healing. However, more research is needed to understand the mechanisms involved.
With hypothyroidism, any wounds I get are very slow to heal. – Shonda R.C.
23. Shortness of Breath
Shortness of breath, also known as dyspnea or “air hunger,” can be associated with both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. When the thyroid is underactive, shortness of breath may occur due to dysfunction of the diaphragm, obstruction of the airway, issues with the central nervous system, pleural effusion (fluid build-up) or sleep apnea. People with an overactive thyroid might experience a racing heart, tremors, high blood pressure or palpitations, which can make it difficult to catch your breath.
I have hyperparathyroidism and when my levels go to high or if they affect other levels in my body I get severe shortness of breath. It’s scary at times. I feel like I can’t catch my breath. – Abby B.