Thursday, January 8, 2015

The Beginning With No End in Sight

Starting around fall 2012, I began to experience bouts of vertigo. It usually only happened when I would go to bed and turned over on a certain side. The room would spin violently, the right side of my head would feel weird, and I would grip onto the bed and shut my eyes to prevent myself from feeling sick. At first it only happened a couple of times maybe about six months apart. 

Around this time, my second ex-husband and I had started to start drifting apart. I don't know if it was the stress from trying to deal with the situation, but I started not to feel well. I was eating less, feeling more tired than I had been in YEARS since getting Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, and bruising more easily than I normally do. I would be full after five minutes of eating, then my stomach and chest would hurt from the full feeling. I think this is what caused me to start eating less. My heartbeats were becoming more irregular. It is normal to get skipped beats here and there, but I was feeling then more often, and it really got to me. 

In February or March of 2013, I ended up getting sick, felt fullness in my left ear(which has kind of been there for a year or so), then my ear began to ring and hasn't stopped sense. It was driving me nuts! I ended up finally confronting my ex-husband about our situation and asked if he wanted a divorce. He said that he did. I couldn't understand how it got to that point, but then I put two and two together, and discovered that he had been cheating on me for months. I think even though our marriage was not going well the last couple of years, there are better ways to handle it than cheat. I do take my share of the blame in the destruction of the marriage as I just didn't want anything to do with him the last two years. I think that came from a combination of being sick with my thyroid issues and partly how he was towards me. Even if I wasn't getting what I wanted or needed from the marriage, I didn't do what he did. I do need to write about the experience at some point to help me. But I digress.

Spring 2013 brought on major allergies for me, and the vertigo started again. This time it wasn't just from lying down, it also happened to me standing up. I was at Walmart shopping for a few food items and such, when all of a sudden, I was hit with major post-nasal drip. My nose would not stop running. I had already felt a little dizzy, akin to rocking-on-a-boat feeling, and I knew I had to hurry up and get out of there or I wouldn't be able to drive home. Once I got home, I leaned over to put something down, and the room started spinning even worse than usual. This was the first time I almost fell from the vertigo. I tried just sitting down, but keeping my eyes open, and seeing the room spinning so fast, started to make me feel sick. I had to shut my eyes, because it's one of the only things you can do to make yourself feel better. It took me a bit longer to recover from that bout. 

I ended up going to the doctor, and even though I only felt things in my left ear, the doctor said that I had fluid in the ear...mostly in the right one. I was still getting dizzy after that and got the same thing from another doctor. My regular doctor, at the time, scheduled an MRI of my brain and left inner ear,  and hearing test. The MRI came back negative, but the hearing test showed high frequency hearing loss. I didn't get a hearing aid at the time.

Here I am, two years later, and I still get bouts of dizziness. The vertigo has only happened maybe once or twice, but only when lying down. I have had MRIs, bloodwork, x-rays, ultrasounds, etc., but no one can find anything to cause my dizziness other than thinking it's either Meniere's Disease or cervical stenosis. This week I've had the dizziness. I am grateful for the times that it goes way, and really hate when it comes back. I can't focus as well as I would like, and I pretty much become useless, because I don't like the feeling when I stand up.

One thing that was discovered in all these testings. outside of the hearing loss and cervical stenosis, was my low vitamin D levels. This can happen to people who have thyroid disease. My level was at 5ng. The cardiologist, that I saw for the irregular heartbeats, said that he wasn't surprised that I wasn't feeling well, and started me on vitamin D therapy to see if it would help. At this time, because I felt so crappy after taking thyroid medication, I started to not taking them regularly. I'm sure this didn't help. I have more to say on this, but I will save it for another time.

Wow....It's Been Three Years Since I Last Posted.

I can't believe it's been three years since I last posted to this blog. So much has happened since including having thyroid surgery. I want to start this blog back up, because I think it will help me deal with some of the things I have been feeling especially since the surgery. Maybe it will help others, too, I don't know.  

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

A Change in Meds

When I was first diagnosed with Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, I was put on a small dosage of Levoxyl.  It helped for a short while, then I started to not feel well again.  I was then put on a higher does of Levoxyl, which helped some, but not much more.  I was also without medical insurance, trying to see the endocrinologist, and paying for thyroid medication.  I didn't see the endo very often, and when I did, I was lucky enough that he would work with me on paying for labs and such.  This was my life until I married my current husband.

I moved to California, and I finally had health insurance with Kaiser through my husband's job.  My medication was then switched from the Levoxyl to Levothroid.  I had been on Levothroid ever since...until now.  

Recently, the Kaiser pharmacy sent out a letter stating that it would no longer carry Levothroid but would substitute it with another generic equivalent.  I have been taking it for the last two months, and I've been awfully tired lately.  I know that part of the reason for my sluggishness is due to the fact that I've become more forgetful, which turns into me forgetting to take some or all of my required pills for the day (137mcg of generic T4 and 5mcg of Cytomel twice a day).  If anything though, I remember to take the T4 meds.  I know that I can't survive the day without at least one Cytomel, but between being super tired and the forgetfulness, I may often go a couple days or more without.

I guess for me to truly know if the new T4 medication is working as properly as it should, I probably should try to make more of an effort to take all the pills correctly and daily.  I have tried alarms, pill boxes, putting it by my bed, etc., but I eventually fall out of the routine.  Anyways, tomorrow I'm going to start taking them like I should, see how it goes, and get some thyroid bloodwork done after I think there's been sufficient time to see if it makes a difference.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

What I've Discovered about My Thyroid, My Body, and Me

I have come to terms that hair loss will always be a part of my life since I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's Thyroiditis about 14-15 years ago.  What I didn't realize, was that when I am under extreme stress, physically and mentally, the hair loss increases greatly. I had already been somewhat stressed for two weeks, then last Friday, something really put my stress levels over the edge. Ever since then, I have been losing about two times the amount of hair.  It's not pretty. As much as that's a negative, I have also found a positive.

I am back on track to losing weight, and I'm finally figuring out how my body works.  I have not exercised at all, but in the last two weeks, I have lost two pounds.  Two pounds in two weeks, for anyone who is hypothyroid, is considered a good rate of weight loss when the average is 1/2 pound a week. I know what works for me isn't going to work for everyone with thyroid disease, because everyone could be at various stages. I went mis/undiagnosed for about five years, so my body was suffering from almost every symptom that can come with Hashimoto's.  Also, I am NOT trying to promote a very low-caloric diet. These types of things should always be discussed with a doctor to see if it's the right thing to do.  This is what works for me. But I digress.

I know that if I want to just maintain my weight, I cannot eat over 1600 calories a day.  If I do, my weight will vary.  If I want to lose weight, I have to eat 1200 calories or less (usually less works better for me). I've also noticed that I don't love a lot of foods like I used to.  I have become so bored with some foods that I rarely or don't eat them at all. Dairy is something that is almost non-existent to me with the exception of cheese, and even that I rarely eat as well. I have also begun drinking a lot more water.

I admit that in the past, I drank very little water. Even after having a lithotripsy to remove a kidney stone.  Soda was, no is, my one addiction that I have never really broken away from, but I do think it's something that I may get bored with. I say this because I tend to buy fountain sodas, drink a little bit of them, then let them sit and get watered down. I just can't finish them no matter the size.  This is true even with a can of soda. I'll drink half and just let the other half go flat.  I'm sure that the increased water intake and the decreased soda intake has a lot to do with the weight loss, probably more so than the reduced caloric intake.   I can't even imagine what the weight loss could be like if I start exercising again.

I have been so stressed which has caused me to be more tired than normal.  The naps have come back with full force, but I know I need to start back.  I just have to push myself no matter how tired I am. I know when I exercise, I get a good burst of energy to get things done.  It's always a double-edged sword, exercise and energy.  Need to exercise to get energy but also need the energy to exercise. Maybe I'll start back on the Wii Fit. Slow and steady as they say. Baby steps.


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

It's Been Awhile...

Here I am again on the never-ending quest to start eating right and losing weight. I officially started today and did pretty well until I had McDonald's for dinner. I do have to say that even with the McDonald's, I am almost certain that I did not go over the 1200 calories that I allow for my daily max.

I've been stressed a lot lately with my youngest daughter's ADD-inattention diagnosis, my son's depression while he was living me (he's since moved back to Las Vegas), and even my older daughter has her depression days (though she's been off meds for awhile). I'm also running back and forth to the high school for the older daughter's high school play rehearsals, and to top it all off, my youngest had a meltdown last week.

It's no secret that stress can exacerbate thyroid symptoms. I admit to feeling out of it lately, more tired than usual, and just depressed myself. I also find myself easily bored with everything and restless, but I'm sure that comes with the depression. Blah.

Hopefully I can find my groove soon. I always think that if I lose about 50 lbs, I might feel better. But I'll be honest, it's been kind of bitch losing weight. I actually had gained 5-10 lbs a few weeks ago, and I'm slowly coming back down again. No matter what I do, it seems I can't budge past 210. Then again, I don't think I'm taking it as seriously as I should. I know I need to make myself, I just wish I felt encouraged or had some support around here. A lot of the time I don't think my husband understands how I feel inside physically, despite looking okay on the outside. That's a typical reaction of anyone who's been told that I have thyroid issues. They don't get it just because I don't look sick. Let me tell you, I would trade any day of the week to feel normal again, to not be so tired that it's become a double-edged sword in my quest to lose weight. Exercise to get energy, but you need energy to exercise. Try as I might, I haven't been able to drudge up any of that lately.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Update

I keep saying I'm going to try to get this blog going again, but I haven't quite been able to with all the stuff I have going on. I recently requested some labs from my doctor, which by the way, had his last day here on Friday. He's relocating to southern California. Kaiser has given me a new doctor, but I may look around to see if I will stick with the new one or choose another. But I digress.

I requested the labs, because I have been feeling a little more run down than usual. I also had not any of my thyroid levels checked in about a year. My labs are already back, and I'm in a decent rage. I guess I can attribute the extra tiredness on a menstrual cycle that I never get. As you remember, I had an ablation to stop them. It does not, however, stop the pms-ing or any of the other things that I normally get i.e. headaches, tired, cramps. It doesn't help that I've been cycling with my daughters, and ever since that started, I have bled a little more. Usually, it's very little to none.

I really need to get that pic of the Cytomel, both generic and brand. The difference will amaze you. I can never take the generics, because it was making me sicker. I wonder what the binding agents are and just how much they use.

I'll be getting the pics, of the meds, up soon along with my progress and other changes. Until then, good health to you.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Puffer Fish Effect

I was reading up on allergies and colds last night, and if there was such a thing as an 'allergy cold'. Tuesday, after class, I had the worst allergy attack. The wind was blowing a bit, I had walked through freshly cut grass at school, and I believe the pollen index was moderate. All I know was after all that, I was feeling miserable. My whole entire face was itching including my head and the inside of my mouth and throat. I even felt my throat tightening up a bit which always makes me a bit nervous.

One of the main things I discover that happens to me when I have an allergy attack(after getting Hashimoto's) is that my entire face swells up. I was likening myself to a puffer fish the other day. It wasn't pretty. I'm going to research allergies and its affects on those with thyroid disease to see if I'm the only one this happens to. Right now the allergies have turned into a cold, and I've been resting as much as I can. I skipped school today as well to get better. I'm hoping this doesn't last long. I have a weekend trip I need to be better for so I can enjoy it with my kids.

Apture