As a once poorly-treated hypothyroid patient, I remember those times I felt like I wasn’t getting enough air. It all went away when I had T3 in my treatment and understood to get optimal. ~Janie, hypothyroid patient and creator of this site
There are many symptoms of being undiagnosed, or of being poorly treated for one’s hypothyroid or Hashimoto’s state. Examples of being poorly treated are:
- Being on nothing but T4, a storage hormone.
- Being undertreated due to the doctor’s poor reliance on the TSH lab test
- Going far too long between raises of T3.
- Failing to achieve optimal results.
And “air hunger” is one of those symptoms. It also has the formal description of “dyspnea”.
What symptoms do hypothyroid patients describe which fits the term air hunger??
- Needing to take extra breaths
- Having “breathlessness”
- Feeling as if you aren’t getting enough oxygen
- Feeling uncomfortable with whether you have enough oxygen
- Breathing feeling labored
What are the proposed causes in hypothyroid patients who are poorly treated?
- A slowed weakness of their respiratory muscles, which includes the diaphragm
- Impairment/slowness of the phrenic nerves that send signals for the diaphragm to contract. https://www.physio-pedia.com/Phrenic_Nerve
- When the medulla part of your brain that regulates your breathing is too slow.
- More good info here: https://www.tpauk.com/main/article/air-hunger-to-death-breathing-problems-of-hypothyroid-patients/.
How hypothyroid or Hashi’s patients removed their air hunger
Plain and simple, they learned the right way to truly get out of their hypothyroid state by adding enough T3 to their T4, or being on a working desiccated thyroid, to achieve this very important goal: https://stopthethyroidmadness.com/optimal. They also need to test RT3 to make sure it’s towards the bottom area of the range or below. They can also need to treat an adrenal issue which if not treated properly, continues to cause problems.
If you end up with a clueless doctor who thinks the RT3 test is useless (it definitely is NOT useless), you can order your labs from the links on this page: https://stopthethyroidmadness.com/recommended-labwork
Want to see where your adrenals stand? Go here.
P.S. I have also found myself with air hunger if my serum iron got too low.