Living with hypothyroidism is a challenge, but it is not the end of the world. With proper treatment and care, it is possible to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.
Depending on what stage you may be going through—from newly diagnosed to longtime patient—your energy and outlook may vary. But because your thyroid plays a part in so many functions in your body, there are bound to be good and bad days along the way.
There are many factors that can help or hinder your health with hypothyroidism. Here is a look at a few of the things that can influence how you feel and the ways that you can try to help yourself in dealing with the day-to-day effects of living with hypothyroidism.
We don’t have control over when or how stress will affect us. It can come in many forms, such as traffic making you late for work, a co-worker who pushes all your buttons, or a loved one having problems and needing your help.
It can also sneak up on us at times and before we know it, we’re completely on edge and stressed out. Stress can have negative effects on our health, and it’s best to try to recognize it early and find ways to reduce or eliminate it.
The first thing you can do is be aware when it’s starting (before you get too overwhelmed) or expect it when you know you have that tight deadline at work. Find ways around stress by asking for help if you need it or changing your plans.
Another way we can control stress is how we react to it. Don’t let stressful situations control you. Take a step back and evaluate the situation. Is there another way to handle it? Is there someone who can help? Also, be sure to give yourself a break and don’t get upset at yourself when stress takes hold. Remind yourself that it happens to everyone and you will get through this latest challenge.
Becoming aware of when stress tries to creep into your day and finding ways to diffuse it can go a long way to helping you not get overwhelmed and turn a few bad days into good ones.
Getting enough sleep is something recommended for everyone, not just hypothyroid patients. But it can make a huge difference for people with hypothyroidism. Getting enough sleep is a key in keeping your energy up and helping your brain function well.
Many experts recommend getting seven to eight hours of sleep per night. Sleep helps your body to repair and recover each night and is an essential component in hypothyroid patients having good days. Having a set schedule for waking up at the same time every day can also be helpful.
If you are having any problems getting or staying asleep at night, talk with your doctor. Not sleeping well can lead to stress and make you feel worse. Finding that balance with your medication and also eating the right foods to help you heal can also help you sleep well again.
Good nutrition is a key for healing hypothyroidism. It also gives your body the energy it needs to get you through each day. Discovering the right foods for you isn’t always easy at first but pays off in the long run. Finding the foods your thyroid and body need for energy and good health will help you in many ways.
Many hypothyroid patients also suffer with digestive issues. Eating a diet that helps heal your gut will cut down on the stress of dealing with an upset stomach and other related problems.
Feeding your body—and your thyroid—the healthy foods they need will be a key in leading to more good days than bad.
There is a long list of symptoms of hypothyroidism, and from day to day you may be affected by one or more. And sometimes the symptoms will bother you more than others. They usually become easier to deal with as you go along and become more familiar with them and their patterns.
You can also learn by keeping track of the food you eat or the activities you do and how your body reacts and find ways to lessen or even eliminate some symptoms. But as always, you should consult your doctor if you have symptoms that persist or get worse.
On good days you may experience no symptoms, or a few mild ones. On bad days, it will be the opposite. Do what you can to keep symptoms at a minimum, but accept that even when you do everything right, you still may have a bad day. But try not to dwell on that. Learn from it and move forward and be sure to enjoy the good days when they happen.
Even when you keep your stress low, get plenty of sleep and eat all the right foods, you can still have bad days with hypothyroidism. And you most likely won’t know why. Even with medication and a healthy lifestyle, the balance of thyroid hormones in your body will fluctuate. That also means your mood, energy level and other functions will fluctuate as well.
There are many factors that may play into how your days go. Some you may be able to control and some you won’t. But the most important thing is to remember that it’s completely normal to have good and bad days when you’re dealing with hypothyroidism.
If you feel like the bad days are outnumbering the good days, it may be time to see a specialized thyroid doctor to make sure your care plan is up to date.
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