It is important to know the connection between hyperthyroidism and anxiety if you deal with this condition. If you have any questions or curious to know more, read on to learn the connection between hyperthyroidism and anxiety.
The Hyperthyroidism And Anxiety Connection
Anxiety Disorder Symptoms
In today’s fast-paced society, it is normal to feel anxious. The older we get, that ‘anxious feeling’ makes an appearance more and more in our daily lives. From the moment we wake up to the moment we go to sleep at night, it’s GO, GO, GO! So, it’s only natural that anxiety plays a role in our lives on occasion.
However, generalized anxiety disorder is something different.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), an estimated 7 million people suffer from generalized anxiety disorder in the United States. The symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder may vary from person to person.
According to the Mayo Clinic, the symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder may include the following.
- Persistent worrying or obsession about small or large concerns that are out of proportion to the impact of the event
- Inability to set aside or let go of a worry
- Inability to relax, restlessness, and feeling keyed up or on edge
- Difficulty concentrating, or the feeling that your mind “goes blank”
- Worrying about excessively worrying
- Distress about making decisions for fear of making the wrong decision
- Carrying every option in a situation all the way out to its possible negative conclusion
- Difficulty handling uncertainty or indecisiveness
According to the Mayo Clinic, there are also physical symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder, which may include the following:
- Muscle tension or muscle aches
- Trembling, feeling twitchy
- Being easily startled
- Trouble sleeping
- Nausea diarrhea or irritable bowel syndrome
If you feel you may be suffering from generalized anxiety disorder, please consult with your primary care physician. Read on to learn more about generalized anxiety disorder and its connection with hyperthyroidism.
Symptoms Of Hyperthyroidism
Hyperthyroidism is the result of an overactive thyroid gland, which can accelerate the natural functions of the human body. Hyperthyroidism is less common than hypothyroidism, only affecting an estimated 1% of the American population. It is more common in women than in men, occurring between the ages of 20-40.
The symptoms of hyperthyroidism can include the following:
- Unexplained or sudden weight loss
- Itchy skin
- Fine hair and hair loss
- Experiencing more bowel movements than normal; diarrhea
- Feeling ‘wired.’
- Periods of excessive sweating
- Racing heartbeat
- Heat intolerance
- Shakiness and tremors
- Overactive reflexes
People who suffer from a generalized anxiety disorder that receives treatment from their primary care physician for their GAD may be unaware that they could also be suffering from hyperthyroidism. Patients with (undiagnosed) hyperthyroidism can show almost no symptoms at all in the beginning stages of an overactive thyroid. Therefore they are not tested nor treated (in some cases) for their thyroid condition. This is why it is so important to bring awareness to the hyperthyroidism and anxiety connection.
However, not everyone who suffers from generalized anxiety disorder has hyperthyroidism, and not everyone who suffers from hyperthyroidism has generalized anxiety disorder. However, anxiety is a prevalent symptom of hyperthyroidism and, in some cases, anxiety is the only ‘noticeable’ sign, especially in the beginning stages of an overactive thyroid.
In fact, anxiety can also be the result of other medical conditions as well, such as heart disease, diabetes, respiratory illnesses, and chronic pain. Anxiety can also be a side effect of certain medications you may be currently taking.
Why Are Complete Medical Workups So Important?
Complete medical workups are important. If hyperthyroidism goes undiagnosed and untreated, it could lead to generalized anxiety disorder over time; especially if anxiety is one of your symptoms. Undiagnosed and untreated hyperthyroidism can also lead to other things as well, such as bone loss and an irregular heartbeat. A prolonged irregular heartbeat can result in a possible stroke. This is why it is so important to receive a proper diagnosis from your primary care physician.
Speak with your doctor about conducting a stimulating thyroid hormone (TSH) test and other necessary tests for a proper diagnosis. If diagnosed with hyperthyroidism, it is important to discuss treatment options with your doctor as soon as possible.
If hyperthyroidism causes your anxiety, prompt treatment for your overactive thyroid will significantly decrease your anxiety and other symptoms caused by hyperthyroidism. Early diagnosis is the key!
Here at Thyroid Symptoms, we are dedicated to bringing you back to the healthy YOU! If you ever have any questions regarding your thyroid health, we are here!
Do you suffer from anxiety due to hyperthyroidism? We would love to hear from you. Share your story with us in the comment section below.