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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Oslo, Norway
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    4,083

    autoimmune (thyroid) disorders and emotional stress?

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    Hi, something odd happened so I'm throwing this out there just in case anyone knows.

    My blood samples are inconclusive so far, but it looks like I'm latently hypothyroid, i.e. probably will develop hypothyroidism at some point. For the time being I'm keeping an eye on relevant symptoms, and hoping it takes its time.

    Yesterday I was at a family gathering, and got into a stressful emotional situation. I won't go into details, but someone joked about things in my life that I'm very sensitive about. Part thoughtlessness, part ignorance, but anyway, the upshot was that I was extremely upset, but had to keep it bottled up. But as soon as I was away from the group I literally could not stop crying, all evening.

    I know I can be quite easily upset, but I usually bounce back quite fast. The odd thing is that I feel terrible today. Emotionally ok, but not physically. Puffy eyes of course, but the inside of my whole head feels swollen, and basically I feel exhausted, as if I have the flu, sore skin, a little achy.

    Can this be related to an autoimmune response? I could of course actually be coming down with the flu. Have any of you thyroid ladies experienced something similar?

    I was going to go to a ski class tonight, but at the moment all I want to do is go be a hedgehog somewhere.
    Winter riding is much less about badassery and much more about bundle-uppery. - malkin

    1995 Kona Cinder Cone commuterFrankenbike/Selle Italia SLR Lady Gel Flow
    2008 white Nakamura Summit Custom mtb/Terry Falcon X
    2000 Schwinn Fastback Comp road bike/Specialized Jett

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    212
    Could your tired and achy feeling be due to dehydration from the previous evening's excessive crying?
    JEAN

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Houston
    Posts
    1,352
    When I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism I had had several months worth of little energy. I felt wiped out most of the time and had to force myself to do anything.
    2012 Jamis Quest Brooks B17 Blue
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    2013 Electra Verse

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,100
    I think (not backed up by research) you can have an autoimmune reaction to stress. I have these types of reactions to mostly physical (i.e. hard, hard workouts) stress and sometimes emotional. I used to always think I was getting some big illness, but now, I deal with it by upping my yoga, drinking green tea, and making sure I'm babying myself in other ways. I have always been like this, but the severity of the reaction varies over time.
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,645
    I would agree, I also don't have links handy, but I'm pretty sure it's well established that the immune system is closely tied to stress hormones. I've had more asthma attacks in response to emotional stress than I have to environmental triggers.
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,952
    Autoimmune disorders of any kind are certainly impacted by stress (which raises cortisol) levels, for sure. This is a problem for people without autoimmune diseases or things like asthma as well, but it is certainly harder on those who do. Here is some information from Science Daily. There is certainly more information out there that addresses the same thing. As I once had advanced Graves Disease (thyroid was removed almost 30 years ago), I've personal experience with this.

    It is also good to remember that a thyroid-related autoimmune disease isn't really about the thyroid - it is really about the underlying disordered autoimmune system itself that manifested by attacking your thyroid. This never made real sense to me until after my thyroid was removed (it was no longer controllable), and 30+ years later I still have problems with autoimmune disorders. So far nothing as serious as the Graves though, for which I am deeply thankful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Oslo, Norway
    Posts
    4,083
    Thanks for the responses, and for the link. Taking it easy tonight with tea and chocolate and cat therapy :-) I hope this is not going to be a regular reaction to stress, it's quite debilitating. Good to hear I'm not alone, though.
    Winter riding is much less about badassery and much more about bundle-uppery. - malkin

    1995 Kona Cinder Cone commuterFrankenbike/Selle Italia SLR Lady Gel Flow
    2008 white Nakamura Summit Custom mtb/Terry Falcon X
    2000 Schwinn Fastback Comp road bike/Specialized Jett

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    northern Virginia
    Posts
    5,825
    From my own experience, I have found that I'm more likely to cry about something when I am coming down with an illness. But also that getting upset at the onset of an asthma attack will make the attack worse. Either way, I think taking it easy is the way to go. I hope you feel better soon.

    - Gray Trek Madone 4.7 road bike, mystery crack in top tube repaired by Calfee, Bontrager Affinity RXL saddle
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,952
    Quote Originally Posted by lph View Post
    Thanks for the responses, and for the link. Taking it easy tonight with tea and chocolate and cat therapy :-) I hope this is not going to be a regular reaction to stress, it's quite debilitating. Good to hear I'm not alone, though.
    Sounds like perfect recovery therapy to me :-)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Troutdale, OR
    Posts
    2,604
    I wish you well.

    cat purring therapy is always good. Even with ten cats, its never an overdose. I like to relax with sweetened chai tea.

    take care

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Oslo, Norway
    Posts
    4,083
    Quick update: in this case - I was actually coming down with the flu. It's a week later and I'm still holed up in bed with a fever, laryngitis, my new best friend cough syrup with morphine and a very pleased cat.
    Winter riding is much less about badassery and much more about bundle-uppery. - malkin

    1995 Kona Cinder Cone commuterFrankenbike/Selle Italia SLR Lady Gel Flow
    2008 white Nakamura Summit Custom mtb/Terry Falcon X
    2000 Schwinn Fastback Comp road bike/Specialized Jett

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,100
    That will do it! Rest up. The flu sucks.
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Houston
    Posts
    1,352
    Yuck! That will wipe you right out. Hope you get better soon!
    2012 Jamis Quest Brooks B17 Blue
    2012 Jamis Dakar XC Comp SI Ldy Gel
    2013 Electra Verse

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Pacific Northwest
    Posts
    543
    Sending you a bowl of virtual chicken soup. Homemade of course. Feel better!
    "Don't go too fast, but I go pretty far"

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,645
    Ugh. Adding a few droppers full of virtual black elderberry extract. Feel better soon!
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

 

 

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