Part of the solution is simple when it comes to fighting the fatigue that often accompanies hypothyroidism, a common type of thyroid disease. But understanding what to do and then doing it are different, many people still don’t get the sleep they deserve. Adults need at least seven hours of sleep each night, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, but a 2013 Gallup survey found that 40 percent of Americans don’t rest nearly as much.
What is the link between hypothyroidism and fatigue?
Hypothyroidism is a deficiency in thyroid hormones that causes many bodily functions to slow down. “Thyroid hormones help regulate metabolism, determine heart rate and are also involved in the function of virtually every organ system in the entire body,” says Kristine Arthur, MD, an internist in Orange Coast Memorial Medical Center in Fountain Valley, Calif. “Since thyroid hormones are involved in numerous bodily processes, when they’re reduced you can have both daylight and nighttime symptoms, including fatigue during the day and inadequate sleep at night.”
Besides causing daytime fatigue, hypothyroidism increases the risk of developing sleeping disorders. “Approximately 30 percent of individuals with hypothyroidism also have sleep apnea,” says Robert S. Rosenberg, DO, medical director of the Sleep Disorders Center of Prescott Valley, Ariz. and author of Sleep Soundly Every Night; Feel Fantastic Daily. “In this group of people, it’s the drop in oxygen and the struggle to breathe against a closed airway which disrupts their sleep.” Hypothyroidism also prevents the deepest, most important sleep, Dr. Rosenberg says. This may be an additional contributor to daytime fatigue in people with hypothyroidism, ” he says.
Get Better Sleep With Hypothyroidism
The very first step in treating fatigue and sleep issues in hypothyroidism is to balance their thyroid hormones. “First, anyone with known or suspected hypothyroidism needs to have their hormone levels checked and managed carefully by a healthcare professional,” Dr. Arthur states. “This has to be achieved by a qualified and experienced specialist. You should not attempt to improve thyroid function by yourself with over-the-counter supplements or medications.” It’s also important to remember that if your medication dose is too large, you might start to experience sleeplessness.
Beyond treating the root cause of hypothyroidism, Rosenberg says the best advice for getting better sleep is the same as it is for anyone that occasionally or regularly lies awake at night. Here are some tips
- Keep your bedroom cool. “A comfortable bedroom temperature is important, especially as you are in the process of having your thyroid regulated,” Rosenberg says. He proposes placing your thermostat between 65 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit to achieve the ideal temperature for comfort.
- Simulate the night. “Try turning down all lights at least an hour before you go to bed,” Arthur says. Keep your bedroom dark and cover all of bright/flashing lights. “Darkness helps with natural melatonin production,” she says.
- Calm down. “A relaxing pre-sleep routine is among the most essential things you can do to help facilitate good sleep,” Arthur says. “Have a warm bath with relaxing scents like lavender, read a favourite book (maybe not an e-book with a backlit screen), or listen to relaxing music,” she states.
- Sleep in a comfy bed. “If your mattress is over seven years old, it can lead to a issue,” Rosenberg says. Make sure that your mattress is comfortable and supports a good night’s rest.
- Avoid nighttime feasts. Indulging in a large meal close to bedtime can disrupt sleep, as can eating something uncommon. Avoid foods or drinks with caffeine, such as coffee or chocolate and spicy dishes if you are struggling with sleep difficulties as these can make rest even more difficult.
- Have a small snack. “Eating a little something with a combination of protein and carbohydrates, such as whole crackers and peanut butter, until bed can help keep blood glucose balanced overnight,” Arthur says.
- De-stress. One of the biggest contributors to sleep issues is stress, and rather than shutting their eyes when they climb right into bed, a lot of people tend to lay in bed and think. To address these issues in a beneficial way, try practicing relaxation techniques like meditation or writing in a journal.
If you continue to struggle with sleep difficulties, speak with your healthcare professional in order to determine the root cause of your sleeplessness and fatigue to help you get the top quality rest you deserve.
The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic and spinal injuries and conditions. To discuss options on the subject matter, please feel free to ask Dr. Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900 .
By Dr. Alex Jimenez
Additional Topics: Wellness
Overall health and wellness are essential towards maintaining the proper mental and physical balance in the body. From eating a balanced nutrition as well as exercising and participating in physical activities, to sleeping a healthy amount of time on a regular basis, following the best health and wellness tips can ultimately help maintain overall well-being. Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables can go a long way towards helping people become healthy.
The information herein on "Better Sleep with Hypothyroidism | Wellness Clinic" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, or licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.
Our information scope is limited to Chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, contributing etiological viscerosomatic disturbances within clinical presentations, associated somatovisceral reflex clinical dynamics, subluxation complexes, sensitive health issues, and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions.
We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system.
Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.*
Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request.
We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez DC or contact us at 915-850-0900.
We are here to help you and your family.
Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CIFM*, IFMCP*, ATN*, CCST
My Digital Business Card