Hypothyroidism; an Invisible Illness

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Hypothyroidism, also called an underactive thyroid, is generally seen as an invisible illness. It often isn’t taken seriously.

Why is it so hard to see what it does to those around us?

Hypothyroidism, unlike many other illnesses, doesn’t tend to make its victims look that sick. Sure, symptoms include weight gain, hair loss, dry skin, brittle nails etc. but those aren’t considered to be that shocking, compared to other illness that leave you bed-bound (that’s not to say hypothyroidism doesn’t, I’ve been almost bed-bound by it), needing a wheelchair, a cabinet stocked full of multiple drugs or unable to work (again, lots of people are left unable to work, but it’s not overly common).

So, like so many other invisible illnesses, for example arthritis, depression or fibromyalgia, it’s not taken very seriously by a lot of people. And it doesn’t help that medical professionals often don’t take it very seriously either.

But, for me, the worst symptoms aren’t even the ones you can see; the hair loss, weight gain, dry hair… It’s the ones you can’t. The invisible ones. The absolute fatigue that leaves you unable to climb stairs, unable to type on a computer at work, unable to get out of your chair. The brain fog and confusion that breaks you down as you can’t remember how to do a simple task at work, or forget to pick your child up from the school gates. The pain and agony in your limbs and back, like the worst flu you have ever experienced, that no pain medication can ease and it doesn’t go after a week or two. It’s constant. For the foreseeable future.

Ironically, even if people do acknowledge the symptoms we get that are visible, it’s the invisible ones that are more debilitating. But if most people won’t believe us about the ones they can see, how are we supposed to get people to realise how bad the invisible symptoms are?

You can click on the hyperlinks in the above post to learn more and see references to information given.

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Written by Rachel, The Invisible Hypothyroidism

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Rachel Hill, Thyroid Patient Expert and Advocate, blogger and author, has Six 2018 WEGO Health Award Nominations. She is a highly ranked writer appearing in the Top Hypothyroidism Websites and Top Thyroid Websites 2018, with relevant qualifications and certificates in Diet and Nutrition, whilst also currently studying  Life Coaching, Motivational Speaking, Reflexology and more. She has worked with The National Academy of Hypothyroidism, The BBC, The Mighty, Dr. Hedberg, Thyroid UK and ThyroidChange, to name just a few. She is well recognised as a trusted and useful contributor to the thyroid community.

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