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Hypothyroidism has been associated with depression for a long time, but anxiety has also been associated with hypothyroidism. Learn why and what you can do to make you feel better.
Anxiety that prevents you from doing everyday tasks can be a sign of an anxiety disorder.
Hypothyroidism is a disease that can play a role in weight gain and mood changes and cause a feeling of slowness in you, so it is not surprising that it can be related to depression. However, anxiety can also include symptoms of hypothyroidism. In fact, a study published in June 2018 at the JAMA Psychological Organization found that people with hypothyroidism are more than twice as likely to have anxiety disorders, and 29.8 percent of all anxiety disorders are associated with endemanoid thyroid disease.
According to the American Thyroid Committee (ATA), hypothyroidism occurs when thyroid gland cells cannot create enough thyroid hormones that are necessary for proper body energy and function. It is difficult to separate hypothyroidism and anxiety because their symptoms are almost identical. "When a patient comes to me with symptoms such as irritability, persistent worry and muscle tension, in addition to treating them for anxiety, I ask them to undergo thyroid tests to check their blood pressure and hypothyroidism," says Diane Solomon, a psychiatric nurse practitioner in Portland, Oregon with a PHD degree. "This is especially true if a woman is in her late thirties or early forties." This is because women aged 5 to 10 years before the onset of menopause are in a period called premnobuse. Some women may experience changes in hormones that can affect their thyroid.
Hypothyroidism can affect men and women for many reasons. These can be from developing immune diseases such as Hashimoto's thyroiditis, taking some medications such as lithium and having large amounts of iodine in the body.
What is anxiety?
According to the American Psychiatric Association, anxiety is a natural response to a stressful situation. This will help you be vigilant during an important short-term event such as doing a job interview or preventing your toddler from running down the street. But when anxiety grows too much and becomes a habit, it can become problematic. Most people with anxiety are not even aware of the disease, as this is how to get used to an action. Anxiety disorders can include general anxiety, panic disorder, social anxiety and certain fears such as flight fear. If anxiety prevents you from doing everyday activities, this can be a symptom of an anxiety disorder.
Anxiety associated with hypothyroidism is very common and can be associated with depression or loneliness. A July-August 2016 study on 100 people with hypothyroidism in the Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism found that 63 percent of cases also showed a rate of emergencies.
What causes anxiety in hypothyroidism?
Why do people with hypothyroidism experience more anxiety?
One theory is that just having a physical problem such as hypothyroidism is enough to increase anxiety. Symptoms of hypothyroidism include poor concentration, reduced memory and difficulty doing daily activities – all of which can be stressful.
Lack of proper treatment for hypothyroidism can also contribute to anxiety.
Levothyroxine is a common treatment for hypothyroidism, but if your dosage is too high, it can directly lead to anxiety and cause symptoms such as rapid heart rate and tremors, which can worsen anxiety. And if hypothyroidism is not treated, symptoms such as dry skin, cold allergies, noise cramps and mood swings will continue. Over time, untreated hypothyroidism can cause heart problems such as poor pulse or heart failure, which may cause more anxiety.
Anxiety can make it difficult for you to continue working in the treatment of hypothyroidism if it causes forgetting to take medications or causing problems in visiting a doctor or continuing to have a healthy lifestyle.
It is interesting that even in women who are treated under hypothyroidism, there may still be anxiety. A study published in December 2019 in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health found that despite treatment with levothyroxine and regaining normal thyroid function, anxiety prevalence is 13% higher in women with hypothyroidism than women without hypothyroidism.
Anxiety symptoms that you should be vigilant about if you have hypothyroidism.
If you have hypothyroidism, the symptoms of anxiety that you should control include:
feeling that you're on the border of anger and stress a lot
Inability to avoid worrying
Rapid heart rate
Sweating and vibration
Changes in appetite
Changes in bowel habits
It is noted that: "It is often difficult to separate the symptoms of attacks caused by anxiety or panic of symptoms of thyroid disease and self-treatment."
How to control and treat anxiety
The good news is that both hypothyroidism and anxiety are highly curable. Proven methods for controlling anxiety include:
Working with a therapist
Regular exercise (especially aerobic)
Doing mind and body exercises like yoga
Meditation or practicing other mindfulness techniques
Taking hypothyroidism and anxiolytic drugs as prescribed
Take care of your thoughts. Just see them then ask, 'Is this thought right? Is it too negative? Then ask yourself, "Can I replace this idea with something more positive? "
In some cases, treatment of hypothyroidism completely reduces anxiety – although this is mostly when anxiety symptoms appear suddenly and as a result of very low thyroid levels, but in many cases, hypothyroidism and anxiety should be treated at the same time, although one of them helps ease the other.
If you have both hypothyroidism and anxiety, be sure to work with your doctor to check for both diseases. "The onset of treatment and regulation of thyroid hormone dosages should be supported and understood by laboratory tests and symptoms, ideally by a healthcare provider. People with anxiety or panic disorder may need repeated thyroid blood tests (blood), as it is difficult to diagnose thyroid dysfunction and mental health concerns."
And since your mind is as important as your body, also talk to your doctor to treat anxiety, whether it's by working with a therapist, practicing lifestyle habits like mindfulness and yoga, or a combination of approaches.