Hashimoto: Depression, seelische Krise und Gefühle

Hashimoto and Emotions

(Hashimotocentral) If you’ve been diagnosed with Hashimoto’s or are thinking you might have it, then you are probably already familiar with the fact that this condition can wreak havoc on your emotions.

Do any of these scenarios sound familiar?

  • After a day of dragging yourself around with absolutely no motivation, beating yourself over the head because you don’t feel productive, worrying that you’re going to lose your job because you just can’t seem to get everything done on time, you fall into bed and start thinking about how nice it would be if you didn’t wake up in the morning…
  • You and your partner/spouse have different ideas about some things, which is to be expected in any relationship. You used to be able to handle this with ease and calm, but now, anytime you disagree with each other, you feel devalued and criticized. You find yourself becoming verbally aggressive in situations where it’s just not appropriate, but you can’t seem to help yourself.
  • You’re watching some piece of schlock on the TV and you burst into tears for no reason.
  • Your partner forgets to ask you about your day and you become sullen and withdrawn.
  • You find yourself in an argument and your gut goes into a knot. You cannot figure out why this situation feels so scary to you.

I could go on, but if any of these sound familiar, be assured:


You are NOT losing your mind.


So many of us have felt as though we were. No one ever explained to us that this comes with Hashi’s territory. If we had only known, perhaps it would have made it easier to handle.

Well, now you know. Hashimoto’s is intimately tied to your emotions. This is because the attacks on the thyroid that occur as a result of the antibodies involved in Hashi’s compromise your entire endocrine system. The endocrine system is hormone central and your hormones regulate your emotions. Your thyroid is part of that system along with a whole host of other organs and glands.

Here’s a list of all the glands that are part of the endocrine system:

  • hypothalamus – regulates hunger, metabolism, body temperature
  • pituitary gland – produces the following hormones:
    • growth hormone
    • thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) – stimulates the thyroid to produce hormones
    • adrenocortocotropin hormone (ACTH) – stimulates the adrenals to produce hormones
    • luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone – control sexual function and production of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone
    • prolactin – produces breast milk in females
    • antidiuretic hormone – controls water loss by the kidneys
    • oxytocin – contracts uterus during birth and stimulates milk production
  • thyroid – helps regulate metabolism, blood pressure, heart rate, digestion, muscle tone and reproductive functions
  • parathyroids – help regulate calcium levels in the blood as well as bone metabolism
  • adrenal glands – produces corticosteroids which regulate metabolism, salt and water balance in the body, the immune system, sexual function and handling stress
  • pineal body – secretes melatonin which helps with sleep
  • reproductive glands (which include the ovaries and testes) – the main source of sex hormones
  • pancreas – secretes digestive enzymes and hormones which regulate blood sugar

If you read the job descriptions of each of these glands and then look at the common symptoms which often go along with Hashi’s, you’ll see that they are very closely aligned with your endocrine system. All of these glands are connected and support each other, so when one starts to fail, it becomes almost like dominoes. It’s just a matter of time before the rest of them join the party.


Here’s a list of the possible emotions a person may experience during the course of dealing with Hashimoto’s:



  • Doctors have been aware of the connection between thyroid issues and depression for some time now. In fact, it is general practice to rule out any thyroid conditions for an individual presenting with depression before prescribing anti-depressants. I’m not sure how often this actually occurs. But, even if it occurs as much as it should, many doctors are relying on lab values that don’t tell the whole thyroid story, so a lot of people are told that nothing is wrong and given anti-depressants anyway, which then masks the thyroid problem even further, leading to a worsening of the condition.


  • This often goes hand-in-hand with depression and can be tied to the adrenal glands. Hashimoto’s often comes on as the result of stress – perhaps you’ve experienced a huge stressor, like the death of someone close, or a car accident, or abuse of some sort – if the body is already struggling and the immune system is compromised, this stressor could be the trigger for those antibodies to start attacking your thyroid. This can also happen to someone who has had ongoing stress throughout his/her life, whether it be large or small.
  • On the connection between histories of stress and autoimmune disease, click here.


  • Anger is a secondary emotion, meaning that it occurs as a result of another emotion, and is usually connected to fear. If you’re experiencing a lot of anger and/or “losing it” at the drop of a hat, not only is your mind trying to protect you from something you’re either not aware of or not ready to process, but your body isn’t able to regulate your emotions in order to keep you calm due to your compromised immune system. It’s going to be important to begin to look inside yourself and ask some questions about what you might be fearing.


  • Our culture has gradually become one that is actually based on fear. From the time we get up in the morning until we try to go to sleep at night, many of us are faced with a long list of uncertainties that keep us insecure and fearful. Perhaps you have money issues that are worrying you or you have a relationship or a job that isn’t going all that well. Maybe you have a child with problems of some kind. If you watch any TV or listen to any radio, these fears are then compounded by the drama of what is passing for news these days. Sensationalism is the order of the day and it only serves to stoke our fears further.
  • This ongoing undercurrent of fear contributes to stress levels which contributes to further weakening of your system, especially if you’re dealing with something like Hashi’s. Additionally, the inability of your system to handle fear very well means that you are likely going to feel more fearful than you used to, perhaps for what seems like no apparent reason.


  • Given the state of medical care regarding Hashi’s, it’s very easy to begin to feel like a) no one can help you and b) no one cares enough to help you. Many of us have gone to numerous doctors only to be discounted or sometimes even chastised for our problems and views regarding our treatment. In addition to that, it can often feel as though no one in your life understands what you’re going through. People are quick to say “well, she/he looks ok” and then conclude that nothing is really wrong or that you just have “psychological” problems.
  • As your condition worsens, it can also become harder to maintain a social life, especially if you’re dealing with multiple food sensitivities. Between not being able to eat anything and having to go to bed at 9:00 just in the hopes that you might be able to get through the next day successfully, your friends soon realize that you’re not generally up for a lot of activities and you find yourself at home alone most of the time. This feeling of aloneness can be especially amplified if you have had to quit work as a result of Hashi’s.


  • A lot of us who have Hashi’s feel as though we have been grieving for decades, not only over the loss of our health, but over what that has meant for our lives. When you have an autoimmune condition, whatever it may be, you are going to experience loss – loss of good health, loss of social engagement, loss of employment, loss of relationships – and all this is in addition to whatever trauma or loss you may have already experienced prior to becoming ill. For a discussion of the connection between past trauma and autoimmune disease, click here.
  • Many people with Hashi’s are Type A personalities – driven, competitive, needing to stay productive. When you are no longer able to do any of that, then you begin to ask profound questions about who you are and what your place is in this world.

Uncontrollable Sadness

  • I distinguish sadness from depression here, because depression is a conglomerate of things that include sadness, but sadness can present by itself in a way that makes it both surprising and difficult to deal with in relation to Hashi’s. You might be watching some schmaltzy movie and burst into tears at the slightest provocation, or you might just think about some innocuous situation in your life and be unable to stop crying. These are all symptoms of the inability to regulate emotion which is connected to the dysfunction in your endocrine system.


Daniela Keller [Tools-of-Life.at], ist seit 1990 in eigener Kinesiologie-Praxis in Wien tätig. Spezialisierung auf diffuse und komplexe Störungen.

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