Thyroid: Mood and Cognitive SymptomsThyroid imbalances, particularly hypothyroid (low thyroid), pervade the depressed population.
Conversely, depression (and low energy) is a major symptom for almost all hypothyroid patients, even if only mildly low thyroid. (Fardella 2000, Pies 1998, Placidi 1998, Prange 1996, Musselman 1996)
Typical mental symptoms also include: apathy, loss of interest or pleasure, cognitive slowing, difficulty concentrating, suicidal ideas, memory problems, weakness, pervasive fatigue (may literally sleep one's life away), emotional instability, anxiety, perhaps panic, delusions and fears, suspiciousness and resentment.
Greater Severity and Myxedematous MadnessProgressive hypothyroidism (myxedemia) steadily slows mental and physical functioning, compromising memory, concentration, comprehension, energy, and reflexes.
Before hormone treatment developed, up to 50% developed a psychosis, termed, myxedematous madness.
Symptoms could include melancholia, mania, and psychosis. Also, slowed thinking, dementia, morbid dreams, obsessions, frightening hallucinations, persecutory delusions, paranoia, suicidal ruminations, along with physical symptoms of low metabolism. (Gull 1873, Clinical Society of London 1888, Asher 1949)
Missed Thyroid DiagnosesPsychiatric hypothyroid symptoms frequently precede physical, often leading to misdiagnosis as depression, and incorrect treatment. (Asher 1949, Reed 1977, Boillet 1998)
Low thyroid decreases cerebral glucose metabolism and blood flow (Marangell 1997), suppresses catecholamine activity and receptor sensitivity (Mano 1998), and is associated with more lengthy, frequent and severe depressions. Subclinical or clinical hypothyroidism is especially common in antidepressant-resistant affectives. (Frye 1999)
Note: Physical SymptomsWeight gain, increased fat, difficult to reverse unless thyroid activity improves. Appetite changes.
Dry, puffy, rough skin; flaky acne. Pallor, yellow tinge (due to difficulty metabolizing carotene).
Water-logged tissue, e.g., ankles, face, especially under the eyes.
Missing outer third of eyebrows. Eyebrows may be permanently raised to keep lids open.
Brittle, easily broken nails. Thinning, dry, brittle, hair.
Vision problems, night blindness. Hearing problems.
Hoarseness, slurred speech, tongue thick and swollen, difficulty swallowing.
Anemia, poor circulation, cold sensitivity; perhaps also intolerant to heat.
Joint pain or stiffness, arthritis. Fatigue after minor exertion. Muscle weakness, aches, cramps.
Indigestion, gas, chronic constipation. Sensitive to drugs and toxins.
Prone to allergies, Candida, hypoglycemia, diabetes.
Low libido, PMS, fertility problems. Menses tend to be irregular, profuse, painful.
Shortness of breath, chest pain, slow pulse. Low blood pressure; but eventually too high, elevated cholesterol, atherosclerosis, heart disease. Prone to lung disorders.
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Reminder: This information is presented for educational purposes only, and is not intended as diagnosis or treatment recommendations for the individual. Each person's biochemical requirements tend to be unique. So if you need treatment for bipolar, thyroid disorder or any other medical condition, please consult a knowledgeable physician.