Wednesday, October 3, 2012

V. Hyperthyroid and Bipolar Mania

High thyroid can interact with, trigger, or intensify mania, (Nath 2001, Escamilla 2001)  and can also increase switching on antidepressants. (Bottlender, 2000). Even levels in the high-normal range can contribute to the development of mania. (Lee 2000, Roca 1990)

Joyce (1991), for instance, reported more than one-third of manics with elevated thyroid, and in the other two-thirds, various individuals with higher thyroid in mania than depression. Moreover, a number of researchers have suggested lithium’s anti-thyroid effects may underly its benefit to mania.
In some manics, however, thyroid can test low.

Mental symptoms that can be common to both hyperthyroid and mania

High irritability, tension, emotional instability, explosiveness, anxiety; exhilaration, increased motor activation, restlessness, tremors, hyperactivity, insomnia and other sleep problems; and, in some cases, erratic bizarre behavior, mood swings, impulsive destructive tendencies, psychosis, paranoia.

Eventually, perhaps, exhaustion or depression

Over time, hyperthyroids may succumb to depression and social withdrawal, perhaps due to an exhaustion caused by extended thyroid overstimulation. Similarly (although usually sooner), manic overstimulation eventually gives way to depression.

To get a comprehensive view of the interaction with bipolar disorder, you may want to look through my book, Natural Healing for Bipolar Disorder
                available here.

To contact me, click here.

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.


  1. My bipolar person had to have her thyroid removed, it was terribly damaged. I wonder how that is related

  2. Here are some possibilities:
    1. Lithium may have damaged the thyroid.
    2. The extreme stress of bipolar episodes may have played a role. Low thyroid, for example, often first emerges after experiencing major stress. Further, stress elevates cortisol, suppressing immune function. And stress can foster autoimmunity. Either of which could have impacted the thyroid.
    3. The mood cycling itself may have alternately caused over-demand and suppression of the thyroid, distorting thyroid axis communication and receptor function and ultimately wearing out glandular mechanisms.