15 Questions To Ask Your Endocrinologist About Hashimoto’s
Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is an autoimmune disease that causes your immune system to target and destroy the thyroid’s hormone-producing cells. It is one of the most common autoimmune disorders in the United States and comes with a variety of common autoimmune symptoms.
If, like me, you’ve been diagnosed with this autoimmune condition, just know – you’re not alone! I know how it feels to receive such a diagnosis and how it can be super overwhelming in the moment. However, the best thing you can do for yourself when you receive such a diagnosis is to educate yourself. You can do this by doing your own research and asking the right questions.
Learning as much as you possibly can about this thyroid disease will benefit you so much in the long run. Trust me on this. Not only will speaking to your endocrinologist help you make better-informed decisions about how to take care of yourself, but it will also help you learn to avoid triggers. And, because each autoimmune disease affects every person differently, speaking to a professional can also give you a much better understanding of this disease and how it might affect you.
So, let’s go over some super important questions to ask your endocrinologist about Hashimoto’s!
15 Questions To Ask Your Endocrinologist About Hashimoto’s
Could My Symptoms Be The Result Of Something Other Than Hashimoto’s?
There are many thyroid diseases that directly affect proper thyroid functioning. And, as each disease slightly differs from the next, so does the treatment process. So, upon receiving your diagnosis, be sure to ask your doctor to explain exactly how they know that your diagnosis is indeed Hashimoto’s. And, if you’re not convinced, don’t be afraid to ask for additional evidence or seek a second opinion. Before you begin any type of treatment, it’s important to be sure that you’re actually dealing with this thyroid disease.
What Is Hashimoto’s In Simple Terms?
Having only been discovered and classified as an autoimmune disease in the 1950’s, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is still a fairly new disease. And, due to this fact, we are still learning new information about Hashimoto’s each and every day. When researching on your own, it might be hard to truly understand what Hashimoto’s is and the levity of your diagnosis. Do you find yourself still being a little unsure about what Hashimoto’s truly is? Be sure to ask your doctor to explain this autoimmune disease in simple terms.
What Is The Root Cause Of My Hyperthyroidism?
Knowing the root cause of your Hashimoto’s disease is one of the first steps to treating this disease and removing environmental triggers from your life. The actual cause of hyperthyroidism is unknown. But, many professionals believe that many factors play a role in the development of this disease. Factors include, but are not limited to, genetics, overexposure to iodine, hormones, and radiation exposure.
Do I Require Treatment Or Medication?
In order to stabilize an under-active or hyperactive thyroid, treatment and medications are oftentimes very necessary. Medications can greatly reduce those common symptoms of Hashimoto’s including, but not limited to, hair loss, cold body temperature, and weight gain. Whether you’re prescribed a specific medication or hormone replacement, it’s important to understand if and why you might require this medication, as opposed to simply making some serious lifestyle changes.
How Will You Establish My Level Of Dosage?
Before starting medication, it’s always important to know exactly what you’re putting into your body and why. If and when you are prescribed medication, be sure to ask your doctor how they calculated your dosage level. And, why do you require this exact dosage? Not only will this help you manage your symptoms better, but it will also give you peace of mind when it comes to starting a new medication.
How Long Will I Require Medication?
Just like knowing your dosage, knowing how long you will require medication is important as well. Sometimes, medication is only required temporarily to help balance your thyroid-stimulating hormones. In other cases, medication might be required for the rest of your life to help manage your disease and provide a better quality of life. Either way, knowing this important information before you begin medication can help you better cope with your new reality.
How Often Will I Require Medication?
Again, questions about medication are sooo important. Not to sound too cliche, but the body is a temple. And, thus, it should be treated like one. So, another important piece of information to know is how often you will require this medication. Knowing this information will help you better manage any side effects of your medication and help you develop a better routine for taking your medication.
Are There Side Effects Of This Medication?
As with any medication, it’s extremely important to educate yourself about it’s possible side effects. Different medications can have several different effects on your day-to-day life. This is why it’s so important to be prepared for these side effects and to know how to deal with them.
How Should I Cope With These Side Effects?
Since being diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, I’ve had to learn how to cope with the side effects of my actual disease and the medication that helps me manage it. This process has taught me that there are several habits in my life that are totally non-negotiable. This is because these lifestyle changes have helped me cope so much. Upon your diagnosis, be sure to ask your doctor how to cope with the side effects of any medication you might need to take. This will help you develop your own, healthy & non-negotiable habits. Plus, it will also give you more confidence in your medication routine.
What If I Miss A Dose?
Thyroid medication is diverse and thus, can have several different effects on your thyroid gland. This is especially true if you miss a dose. So, before starting a new medication, be sure to make yourself aware of the risks associated with missing a dose. And, more importantly, what to do when you miss a dose.
Will Certain Foods Or Other Medicines Interfere With My Treatment?
Certain foods, chemicals, medicines, and more can interfere with Hashimoto’s treatment and even cause flare-ups. Because of this, it’s best to know what environmental triggers to avoid ahead of time. This way, you can take steps to avoid these triggers and save yourself a plethora of time, energy, and stress.
Will My Disease Require Surgery?
Some more serious cases of Hashimoto’s disease may require surgery. And, if so, it is better to know ahead of time so that you can begin to mentally prepare yourself. And when I say mentally prepare yourself, I mean preparing yourself for major life changes, the recovery process, and the creation of a new & much healthier routine.
Is It Safe For Me To Exercise?
Exercising with Hashimoto’s can be quite strenuous on the body. Through trial and error over the years, I’ve developed a list of the dos and don’ts of exercising with Hashimoto’s. But, still. Knowing the limits of exercising with Hashimoto’s before you strain the body can be extremely beneficial to your life.
Should I Be Concerned About Getting Pregnant?
Irregular thyroid hormone levels can present serious risks during pregnancy. These include preeclampsia, anemia, miscarriage, and placental abruption. And, in some cases, Hashimoto’s can even contribute to infertility. If you see children in your future, be sure to ask your doctor about the precautions one must take with Hashimoto’s before, during, and after pregnancy.
How Can I Live My Best And Healthiest Life With My Disease?
Last, but certainly not least, be sure to ask your endocrinologist to give you a list of things you can do to cope with autoimmune disease. The point of seeking treatment for your disease is to learn to live your happiest and healthiest life with Hashimoto’s. But, this doesn’t mean you have to figure everything out on your own. As an endocrinologist, your doctor should be especially knowledgeable about how to make the most of your life. No matter your diagnosis.
Don’t be afraid to ask any question that makes you feel better about your autoimmune disease!
When it comes to autoimmune disease, you can never really cure your disease – you simply manage it. This is why it’s so important to make sure that you ask your endocrinologist each and every single question that comes to your mind. In addition to the questions mentioned above, never feel too shy to ask for additional information, elaboration, or even proof. And, most importantly, never be afraid to seek a second opinion. This is what the professionals are here for.
Thank you guys for following along as I get deeper and deeper into the world of autoimmune diseases. My goal is not only to educate myself more about this topic but also to educate others and hopefully, inspire you to make changes that benefit your overall life. For more information on chronic illness, click here. And, to see what else I’ve been up to, be sure to check back in for new blog releases, recipes, and more!