Being hypothyroid means that you are tired all the time. So how can hypothyroidism and insomnia be linked? If you have hypothyroidism, you know what a trouble maker your thyroid gland can be. Since the thyroid controls all bodily functions, it can also cause some common conditions like sleep apnea and chronic fatigue syndrome. As if your thyroid wasn’t already making you tired enough!!
Many patients that are hypothyroid also have sleep apnea. This could be related to an enlarged thyroid gland obstructing the airway. People with sleep apnea do not breath in a regular pattern during the night. They are often restless, and never get a good night’s sleep. If you suspect that you have sleep apnea, take the Berlin Questionnaire here. Discuss the results with you doctor.
Hypothyroid patients also have an increased risk of chronic fatigue syndrome. Believe it or not, chronic fatigue syndrome can cause sleep disturbances. According to the CDC, the symptoms of the syndrome include:
- increased malaise (extreme exhaustion and sickness) following physical activity or mental exertion
- problems with sleep
- difficulties with memory and concentration
- persistent muscle pain
- joint pain (without redness or swelling)
- tender lymph nodes in the neck or armpit
- sore throat
- brain fog (feeling like you’re in a mental fog)
- difficulty maintaining an upright position, dizziness, balance problems or fainting
- allergies or sensitivities to foods, odors, chemicals, medications, or noise
- irritable bowel
- chills and night sweats
- visual disturbances (sensitivity to light, blurring, eye pain)
- depression or mood problems (irritability, mood swings, anxiety, panic attacks)
If you have these symptoms, discuss them with your doctor right away. There is treatment available.
Step You Can Take Now
If neither of these conditions apply to you, there are still steps that you can take to get a good night’s sleep:
- Set regular times for going to bed and for getting up.
- If you nap during the day, don’t nap f0r more than 45 minutes of sleeping time.
- Don’t drink alcoholic beverages before bedtime and don’t smoke at all.
- Avoid caffeine beginning six hours before bedtime.
- Avoid eating 3 hours before bedtime.
- Exercise regularly, but not right before bed.
- Use comfortable bedding.
- Find a comfortable temperature setting for your bedroom, and keep the room well ventilated.
- Block out all distracting noise and eliminate as much light as possible.
- Reserve your bed for sleep and sex.