It’s been 7 months since the start of my thyroid inbalance. Today, I have energy, a focused mind, and no squalls of irritated, anxious, or shut down states. I’m sleeping, my digestion works, my husband is cute again, and my desk has been cleared. I have long periods of contentment and even some joy! It took piles of Synthroid, Cytomel, hypnosis, accupuncture, TFT (Thought Field Therapy), an extra day off each week and an understanding husband. Everytime I took an antibiotic, it knocked out the affect of the thyroid medications. I’ve just climbed out of the temporary well one more time. It takes about 10 days, post treatment, to refind my equilibrium.
What have I learned? Don’t take the body for granted in your diagnoses.
Joseph McCreery, a psychiatrist in North Seattle, sends this advice about diagnoses:
"Any moderately or severely depressed, anxious or chronically fatigued patient should have a medical lab screen (if not obtained within the last year) to include : Complete blood count, Thyroid functions, and a Chemistry panel including electrolytes, BUN, Creatinine and liver function tests. (CBC, TFTs, Comprehensive Chemistry panel).
Sleep apnea is another physical disorder that contributes to fatigue, depression, anxiety (and increased risk of cardiovascular problems). Any patient with snoring, periods of about 10 seconds of apnea (no breathing) followed by a deep snoring or snorting inhalation and accompanied by day time sleepiness should be sent for a sleep evaluation.
Medical abnormalities such as these, when screened for and treated, can do much to improve patients well-being and improve therapy outcomes. These tests can easily be done by a primary care provider at a therapists request."
If a bodily illness or imbalance is the culprit, therapy might still be useful. Stressed people often need support, permission to do more self-care, problem-solving, and real work to get through the trauma of the loss of their health. If I hadn’t been teaching anger management to other people for so many years, I would have needed someone to teach me those skills. (I can now say, unequivocably, they really work!) Many physical changes are permanent, some even fatal. Don’t say goodbye to your clients because the etiology of their problems arise below the neck, unless they’re ready. Remember that containment of affect is often best done interpersonally. You may be the best regulator of your client’s affect however it got dysregulated.