Sunday, May 19, 2013

Symptoms that are common to autoimmune diseases

Disorders of the thyroid, including the autoimmune diseases known as Grave's and Hashimoto's, have symptoms that are specific to them.  In fact, each autoimmune disease currently known to medical science will have its own particular issues.  However, there are symptoms that are commonly found in nearly all autoimmune diseases.  I think it's interesting to consider what these might be as they might give us a clue to treating the autoimmune dysfunction that comes with Hashimoto's.  Perhaps, improving one's overall health might lesson these typical expressions by the body of chronic distress.  

Why do I illustrate this with a picture of a bed?  If you have an autoimmune disease, you know the answer!  I'm sure you can relate to the unrelenting fatigue that is part of any autoimmune problem.  You may need more sleep and more rest than a well person does.  Even on your best days, you might feel like you are doing 25mph in the highway of life, while others are happily speeding past you.   There are any number of illnesses besides an autoimmune problem that can cause this same kind of weariness.  Any chronic tiredness or any profound change in your energy levels should be evaluated by a physician.

In addition to unusual tiredness, here are some other cross-symptoms of autoimmune problems:

 1)  Depression:  It's not always clear whether this is part of the cause or a result of feeling unwell over a long period of time.
2)  Muscle aches/joint aches
3)  Brain fog!! Memory problems, problems focusing or concentrating
4)  Muscle weakness
5)  low grade fever -- (Hashimoto's, however, can lead to low body temperatures)
6)  swollen lymph glands
7)  frequent infections
8) sudden changes in weight
9)  hair loss
10)  feeling of heaviness when you breathe, shortness of breath
11)  tingling, numbness in limbs
12)  itchy skin, skin rashes
13)  dry eyes
14)  heart palpitations
15)  recurrent miscarriages

Other things that you might watch out for are mouth ulcers, abdominal pains, sweats, and alternating diarrhea and constipation.

Not everyone who has an autoimmune disease will experience every one of these symptoms. If you have several of them, however, it might be a clue that you do, indeed, have an autoimmune problem.

Further Reading:  

Wishing you great health!

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