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Addressing The Immune System Component Of Autoimmune Thyroid Disorders

For those with an autoimmune disorder such as Graves’ Disease or Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, it is essential to address the immune system component before addressing the thyroid gland itself.  While many people think of Graves’ and Hashimoto’s as being thyroid disorders, the truth is that they are both serious autoimmune conditions.  It puzzles me why most medical doctors neglect the immune system component, and focus primarily on the thyroid gland.

After all, research has shown that people who have autoimmune disorders such as Graves’ Disease and Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis are more likely to acquire additional autoimmune conditions in the future, such as Rheumatoid Arthritis and Lupus.  And when you think about it, this shouldn’t be a surprise, as if most endocrinologists don’t do anything to help strengthen the immune system of their patients, then their immune systems will of course remain in a weakened state, and they will therefore be susceptible to other autoimmune conditions.

For example, when I was initially diagnosed with Graves’ Disease, the endocrinologist I consulted with recommended that I take Methimazole, along with a beta blocker.  And even though I didn’t take the medication, I respected the fact that she didn’t recommend that I treat my condition with radioactive iodine (which I of course would have rejected as well).  But besides recommending the prescription drugs, she didn’t recommend anything else that could help strengthen my immune system and thus prevent future conditions from developing.

In fact, she didn’t talk about any of the five factors I addressed in the previous post.  On the case history forms of most endocrinologists, they will ask if you have problems sleeping, and ample sleep is one of the factors I discussed that is necessary to restore your health.  For those who are having sleeping difficulties, in most cases they will simply prescribe another type of drug, which would be fine if that was the only solution to help someone get quality sleep each night.

In summary, the goal of most medical doctors is to control your symptoms, and not necessarily address the cause of your condition.  And don’t get me wrong, as symptomatic relief is important, and sometimes taking prescription drugs is necessary.  This is especially true in many cases of Graves’ Disease, as if a person has a very high pulse rate, then they might need to take a beta blocker for awhile to help control the symptoms, or else the condition can become life threatening.

Another thing to consider is that a weakened immune system can sometimes cause your condition to develop in the first place.  So for a person who has a compromised immune system and over time develops Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, giving them synthetic or natural thyroid hormone without addressing the immune system component is ludicrous.  The adrenals are another area that usually should be addressed before the thyroid gland, yet they are also commonly neglected by most endocrinologists.  I’ll talk more about the adrenal glands in future blog posts.

In order to strengthen your immune system, you should be aware of some of the factors that can lead to it becoming weakened in the first place.  And while there are a number of different factors that can lead to a weakened immune system, there are three primary ones that I will be discussing in the next post.