Ep 029 My Experience with Hypothyroidism Medication

When you set out to help support your thyroid function, hypothyroidism medication is not a one size fits all process. You need to know your numbers - ALL your numbers -  to really get the best treatment possible. My story actually started way before I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. I struggled with so many of the classic thyroid symptoms - fatigue, dry skin, constantly feeling sick, muscle fatigue, irregular periods, and depression. MAJOR depression...to the point where my doctor, a Psychiatrist, prescribed a low dose of Synthroid along with my antidepressants. I told him, “I don’t have a thyroid problem. My tests always come back “normal.” He informed me that many of his patients see an improvement of symptoms with this combination. He was right! But I didn’t have a thyroid problem. 

 

Jump ahead about 10 years. I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer and due to having a thyroidectomy, needed to begin thyroid medications pretty much right after surgery BUT I had to start with a different medication. A T3 only med because of it’s shorter half life as I was preparing for upcoming treatment. I actually felt really good, almost “normal” considering what I had been going through and what I had felt years before. Then, a few days before treatment I had to go off that T3 only med to prepare for treatment. This actually turned into too many weeks due to a scheduling glitch with nuclear medicine and I was VERY hypothyroid. I was miserable! But, I just went along with it and went through my treatment process and then FINALLY, I could get on the normal medicine which would help me feel amazing once and for all! That did NOT happen...for at least 3 years. 

 

While working, taking care of 2 little people, and a husband who traveled about half the time, I struggled with more depression, more lethargy, more debilitating fatigue, swelling in face and hands, brain fog, and hopelessness. I was done! Despite all those symptoms, I found a way or was pissed off enough to keep trying to find answers to my symptoms. I was NOT willing to accept this as my new normal. I looked into acupuncture, vitamins (from a big box store - that’s for another episode), beating myself up at the gym (only made things worse - also, for another episode), and nutrition. I was told that what I ate doesn’t affect how I feel. I didn’t believe that and so dug into that aspect more and more...after I found a new doctor. You can read more about the nutrition aspects of what I learned in my first book - The Rock Bottom Thyroid Treatment An 8 Week Diet for people with “normal” test results to thrive, not just survive. You can find it on Amazon, B&N, and Kindle. 

 

From that conversation about how diet played a part in my symptoms, I was interested in looking for a new doc who was willing to look at alternative options for medication. To that point, I was told it would just take time and that there were not other medications or combinations of medications to try. I had been trying for 3 years to feel like I was living - just a little. I found him! My first appointment with this new endocrinologist had me feeling that there was finally some hope even if just a glimmer! He explained that the way my treatment plan was going and the standard protocol for that was basically not going to help me feel that great. I was so suppressed - almost like being overmedicated because of the cancer - which in and of itself, can contribute to my horrible symptoms. So, he said we could try adding some T3 to the standard Synthroid (T4) to my plan. Within days, it was working. There was that glimmer of hope! And it snowballed from there. I was then able to dig into more of what I needed to learn about real nutrition and how it can help symptoms. I found I could actually start improving my sleep. I started to have motivation and a better outlook on life all while learning about nutrition. Eventually, I found the motivation to quit my job that I had loved but had become more frustrated with because of how I was feeling and went back to school to get a master’s in nutrition because I wanted to help others so they didn’t have to struggle on their own the way I did for far too long! You can get a great jumpstart on this by joining the FREE Thyroid Reboot Challenge. The link will be in the show notes. That will short cut you figuring things out on your own. 

So, what do I recommend to get you in the right direction with your hypothyroidism medication? 

  1. Join the Thyroid Reboot Challenge - in there I discuss the complete thyroid panel everyone should have - at least as a baseline - to help determine where you need to be. That can look a little different for everyone. I can help you get testing done if your doc won’t. 
  2. Find a doctor who is willing to look at these numbers and try different meds to optimize how you feel. 
  3. Ask about T3 meds. Ask about Natural thyroid meds like Armour or NatureThroid. To this point, the synthetics have worked better for me but many feel the natural versions have changed their life!
  4. Be your OWN best advocate. If you are too fatigued, exhausted and feel hopeless, ask for help. Seek out a friend or relative to help you advocate. Reach out to a functional nutritionist to help you on a forward path. Just don’t let life pass you by or wait one more day to not start living the life you deserve. 

Thank you for listening today. I hope you have found some hope with regard to getting the right hypothyroidism medication to help you feel your best. Your journey will look different than mine and that’s why it’s so important to pay attention and stand up for yourself. Don’t wait another minute, another hour, another day to find out how you can stand up and feel your best. Our health is everything! Until next time...eat well, be well!

Get your copy of the Rock Bottom Thyroid Treatment here: https://www.rockbottomwellness.com/book

FREE Thyroid Reboot Challenge: https://www.rockbottomwellness.com/products/thyroid-reboot-challenge

Schedule your FREE call here: https://www.rockbottomwellness.com/breakthrough

Get your free 7 Day Eating plan here: https://www.rockbottomwellness.com/7-day-eating-plan



 

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