Issue # 114  July 4, 2013

Welcome to KnowYourThyroid.

I hope everyone has a great 4th of July.

Today I have an article about depression caused by hypothyroidism that is being treated with levothyroxine. This is a symptom that I have stuggled with for several years. I am one that my body cannot convert T4 to T3.            I changed my medication to ArmourThyroid which is the natural desiccated thyroid tablets mentioned in the article.I am happy to report many of the symptoms I had been experiencing are improving including the depression.

In today’s Check It Out! section I will give you the diet I follow and the supplements I take to help improve my thyroid function as much as I can.

Is Your Depression Caused by the Thyroid Medication Levothyroxine?


Levothyroxine is used to treat an underactive thyroid condition called hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism occurs when your thyroid gland fails to produce sufficient thyroid hormones, thyroxine and triiodothyronine. Depression is one of the symptoms of hypothyroidism.

How does levothyroxine work?

Levothyroxine is a synthetic thyroid hormone administered to replace thyroxine or T4 produced by your thyroid. Administering levothyroxine normalizes your thyroid function, effectively bringing all symptoms of hypothyroidism under control. Triiodothyronine or T3 is generally not replaced as your body has the ability to convert T4 to T3 as and when needed.



Does levothyroxine cause depression?

Mood swings and irritability are very rare side effects associated with levothyroxine. If you have depression when you are taking levothyroxine, it is either because of levothyroxine under replacement or your body’s inability to properly convert T4 to T3. With under replacement of levothyroxine, you are not getting enough thyroxine and you continue to experience symptoms of hypothyroidism such as depression. If you are taking enough levothyroxine and your body is not able to properly convert T4 to T3, you still continue to experience symptoms.





An excess of thyroid hormones or hormone replacement medication also sometimes causes mental health disturbances. High levels of T3 and T4 cause an acceleration of the brain’s metabolism, which sometimes results in anxiety, insomnia and agitation.



What if you develop depression when you start taking levothyroxine?

If your depression is due to levothyroxine under replacement, increasing your dosage is probably all that is needed to make you feel better. Discuss with your doctor about taking T3 or Liothyronine in addition to levothyroxine. Research shows that many hypothyroid patients do much better with this combination drug than just levothyroxine. This is especially true if your body has trouble converting T4 to T3.



Are there options other than levothyroxine to treat hypothyroidism?

If levothyroxine is not working out for you, consider taking natural desiccated thyroid tablets instead. They are made from pig’s and/or cow’s thyroid glands and contain all the hormones produced by your own thyroid gland, giving you T4, T3, T2, T1 and calcitonin in the right balance.



For most hypothyroid patients, thyroid medication is for life. It is possible to get symptoms such as depression if you miss your medication. If depression persists in spite of these changes, consult a psychiatrist for evaluation as it is possible that your depression is stemming from issues other than your thyroid function.



Check It Out!


Many people who suffer from hypothyroidism notice improvement in their symptoms when they improve their diet. Here is an all natural diet that I follow:

The Natural Thyroid Diet

I also take a thyroid supplement so I get added iodine and other minerals that my thyroid needs. I use the company Vitabase for supplements. They are an American company with great products and service. Just click the link below to check them out.

Click Here