Thyroid And Insomnia (is there a CONNECTION?)

Having any trouble sleeping? Are you worried that thyroid problems may be the cause of your insomnia? Is there a connection between thyroid and insomnia?

Well, you are not alone. Statistics show that approximately one in four Americans develop insomnia each year. Meaning that an approximate number of 60 million Americans suffer from insomnia yearly. Insomnia, which is the inability to sleep is triggered by several factors ranging from depression, stress, anxiety and even health-related problems among which, Thyroid problems are also listed. 

Did you know that among the 60 million Americans that suffer from insomnia yearly, thirteen million of them suffer from it as a result of Thyroid problems? The thyroid gland which is a part of the endocrine system plays an important role in the body’s natural functioning. Any slight issue or disorder with this gland may alter several natural functions of the body, including sleep. 

Thyroid disorders that cause insomnia

Although not every thyroid problem should scare you and give you sleepless nights, it is yet important that you seek out the assistance of your physician to get an in-depth knowledge of what you are dealing with. There are some Thyroid problems or disorders out there. Here’s a breakdown of a few and how they may distort your normal body functions, thus resulting in insomnia.


Hypothyroidism is an underactive thyroid resulting in a decrease in the production of thyroid hormones. This causes the normal body process to slow down, hence, making the body feel weak and exhausted. 


Hyperthyroidism, on the other hand, is an overactive thyroid and it causes excessive secretion of the thyroid hormone in the body. This disorder can cause one to experience anxiety, mood swings, irregular and rapid heartbeat, body weakness and fatigue.

Over time, health practitioners have been able to link these disorders to insomnia. In fact, the above-mentioned symptoms are known to stimulate the body to experience a state of restlessness, confusion whether to sleep or not, tiredness and even encouraging racing thoughts, causing one to toss and turn uncomfortably because they are finding it difficult to get a good sleep.

The good news is that whether insomnia is thyroid-related or not, there are medications readily available to help reduce the symptoms and improve overall sleep conditions. 

You can find more information on how thyroid problems cause insomnia in this article.

If you notice frequent difficulty to get a night of good sleep, then it is important to see a doctor and get the right diagnosis. Just a simple blood test carried out will show if thyroid disorder is the cause of their inability to sleep. And if it is, then one has to ensure to keep a sleep diary to document their sleep patterns. This will give the doctors a hint if their medication is actually working. 

Apart from taking medications, making changes to ones’ daily activities can also influence and improve sleeping patterns. According to Betul Hatipoglu, MD, an endocrinologist at Cleveland Clinic, improving your lifestyle can positively influence the immune system and ease the symptoms of hypothyroidism. Other ways insomnia can be dealt with includes: 

  • Dealing with stress, and taking out time to relax.
  • Rather than feeding on alternative thyroid medications to improve hormonal balance, consume more vegetables, whole grains, fruits, lean proteins. 
  • Indulge in yoga, therapy, exercise or meditation. Terry Davies, MD mount Sinai medical clinic, New York explains that engaging in physical activities can boost the production and secretion of hormones and chemicals that improve energy, mood, and also make the brain ‘feel good.
  • Finally, you may use a weighted blanket to help you to be more relaxed. Here you can find more on how weighted blankets work and the science behind them.

Here we listed the most effective ways to possibly improve your sleeping patterns. I hope that you found some helpful suggestions!