- Are you tired all the time?
- Are you unable to lose weight even though you are dieting and exercising?
- Are you losing your hair?
- Are your hands and feet cold all the time?
- Do you have “brain fog?”
- Do you have constipation problems?
- Do you have dry skin?
- Do you frequently experience anxiety or depression?
Here is a typical scenario that I see daily in our clinic (www.utahwellnessinstitute.com):
A woman comes in with her husband. She is complains of being so tired every day that she can’t keep up anymore. And the irritability and PMS? Her husband verifies those. He also mentions, not surprisingly, her low sex drive. She’s having to push herself through the day and is upset about the recent 10-15 pounds she has gained.
So, we run a blood test and check all her hormones. When I sit down with her and her husband to show them the results, they are somewhat puzzled. “But my doctor said he checked my thyroid and said it was ok.”
I’ve seen it a thousand times. My answer? Your doctor didn’t check the right things on the blood test. “And besides,” I tell her, “if everything were really ok, why are you so tired and irritable all the time?”
The problem is that your doctor has been trained to only do a thyroid screening test call the TSH. If that is all that was tested on your thyroid, you may spend the rest of your life wondering why you feel like life is passing you by and why you are left with a tired, frustrated life. Then the depression sets in.
But there are plenty of things that can be done about it. Be proactive with your doctor. Tell him you want a “free T3” test run, along with several others to see if there really is something wrong with your thyroid. Remember, a good 75 percent of women in America today have undiagnosed hypothyroidism.
Another problem: Let’s say your blood test comes back and it shows “low normal” on the results for your thyroid and your doctor will tell you that everything looks good. But do you really want to live the rest of your life feeling “low normal?” Like thousands of our patients, living life in the “high normal” range is a whole different, enjoyable and fulfilling experience.
For the past 11 years, we have been trying to get the word out to women that they don’t have to feel the way they do. I’ve sat in on many women’s focus groups and some of the most common complaints are fatigue, weight gain, and depression—all of which can be the result of an undiagnosed low thyroid. For more details go to www.stopthethyroidmadness.com.
So remember, this may not be your fault. Get checked now.
*Dr. Robert Jones is the Clinic Director at the Utah Wellness Institute in Draper, Utah. (www.utahwellnessinstitute.com)