Coronavirus and Hashimoto’s – Are You at a Higher Risk?
If you have Hashimoto’s you are probably wondering how can Coronavirus affect me?
I know with people being quarantined and people’s lives at risk this can be a scary time especially if you have an autoimmune disease like Hashimoto’s. Please read on for more information.
This post does contain affiliate links below and I may earn a small commission if you chose to make a purchase. I shared the vitamins I take to help boost my immune system.
See my post about children, stress, and quarantine.
Hashimoto’s Disease and Coronavirus
The CDC says these people are at higher risk:
People who are immunocompromised
- Many conditions can cause a person to be immunocompromised, including cancer treatment, smoking, bone marrow or organ transplantation, immune deficiencies, poorly controlled HIV or AIDS, and prolonged use of corticosteroids and other immune weakening medications
There is no concrete research yet about if people with Hashimoto’s Disease are at higher risk or not even with weaker immune systems.
I have always been told that as someone with Hashimoto’s Disease my immune system is “compromised“. I do not know if this will mean I get the Coronavirus easier than others or not.
I have been cleaning and practicing safe habits as best as I can. I am absolutely no doctor and please do your own research and speak to your own medical professional if you want information. I provide the information below to consider.
Illness due to COVID-19 infection is generally mild, especially for children and young adults. However, it can cause serious illness: about 1 in every 5 people who catch it need hospital care. It is therefore quite normal for people to worry about how the COVID-19 outbreak will affect them and their loved ones.World Health Organization
Covid-19 and Hashimotos Disease an Autoimmune Disease
According to Dr. Aviva Romm, people with Hashimoto’s may not be at high risk. She does also state that there is no evidence and history proven yet. There just hasn’t been enough data on it yet.
Starting with the good news, based on the information we have from China, there is currently no reason to believe that people with thyroid problems are at any increased risk from this new virus. It does not appear that thyroid disease, particularly Hashimoto’s, increases one’s risk of developing COVID-19 unless you fall into another high risk category above. Of note, SARS, a related coronavirus that caused an epidemic starting in 2002, albeit one with much more severe consequences than COVID-19, may be responsible for thyroid damage, so if you do experience COVID-19 infection and have autoimmune thyroid disease, it’s prudent to monitor your symptoms for any changes, and if changes are noticed, to ask your health care provider to order a basic thyroid lab panel. However, at this time, there’s no reason to suspect that COVID-19 will cause thyroid damage.Dr. Aviva Romm
She also shares this graphic on her site stating other health complications and their risk levels.
Below is a table of the current opinions of medical experts at the time of this writing; however, new information is coming out every day and so it’s important you stay in contact with your healthcare provider.Dr Aviva Romm
What to Do If You Have Hashimoto’s to Prepare
If you are at higher risk of getting very sick from COVID-19, you should: stock up on supplies; take everyday precautions to keep space between yourself and others; when you go out in public, keep away from others who are sick; limit close contact and wash your hands often; and avoid crowds, cruise travel, and non-essential travel. If there is an outbreak in your community, stay home as much as possible. Watch for symptoms and emergency signs. Watch for symptoms and emergency signs. If you get sick, stay home and call your doctor. More information on how to prepare, what to do if you get sick, and how communities and caregivers can support those at higher risk is available on People at Risk for Serious Illness from COVID-19.CDC
Vitamins to Take to Boost Immune System for Coronavirus
If you have Hashimoto’s disease there are vitamins you can take to help boost your immune system.
- Vitamin C is one of the biggest immune system boosters of all.
- Vitamin B6 is vital to supporting biochemical reactions in the immune system.
- Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps the body fight off infection.
I personally have noticed a huge difference when taking Vitamin C to help with my thyroid issues. I am sharing the one I have on subscribe and save on Amazon. You can take any brand though it’s just what I tried and keep getting. I swear I have been getting sick less on it. Again check with your doctor first though!
Elderberry and Hashimotos
Patients with autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, celiac, hashimoto’s, and lupus need to consult a physician before taking elderberry because it will stimulate their immune system. Elderberry interferes with medications that suppress the immune system and medications used to treat autoimmune diseases.Mensa Medical
Make sure to talk to your doctor before taking Elderberry!
CDC and the Coronavirus Facts
The CDC is the best site to refer to for any questions. They advise sharing this button if you want any up to date information please head to their site by clicking the photo below.
Everything below is a guideline from the CDC website.
Get ready for COVID-19 now
Take actions to reduce your risk of getting sick
If you are at higher risk for serious illness from COVID-19 because of your age or because you have a serious long-term health problem, it is extra important for you to take actions to reduce your risk of getting sick with the disease.
- Stock up on supplies.
- Take everyday precautions to keep space between yourself and others.
- When you go out in public, keep away from others who are sick, limit close contact and wash your hands often.
- Avoid crowds as much as possible.
- Avoid cruise travel and non-essential air travel.
- During a COVID-19 outbreak in your community, stay home as much as possible to further reduce your risk of being exposed.
Have supplies on hand
- Contact your healthcare provider to ask about obtaining extra necessary medications to have on hand in case there is an outbreak of COVID-19 in your community and you need to stay home for a prolonged period of time.
- If you cannot get extra medications, consider using mail-order for medications.
- Be sure you have over-the-counter medicines and medical supplies (tissues, etc.) to treat fever and other symptoms. Most people will be able to recover from COVID-19 at home.
- Have enough household items and groceries on hand so that you will be prepared to stay at home for a period of time.
See also: Get Your Home ReadyTake everyday precautions
Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Take everyday preventive actions:
- Clean your hands often
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing, or having been in a public place.
- If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- To the extent possible, avoid touching high-touch surfaces in public places – elevator buttons, door handles, handrails, handshaking with people, etc. Use a tissue or your sleeve to cover your hand or finger if you must touch something.
- Wash your hands after touching surfaces in public places.
- Avoid touching your face, nose, eyes, etc.
- Clean and disinfect your home to remove germs: practice routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces (for example: tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks & cell phones)
- Avoid crowds, especially in poorly ventilated spaces. Your risk of exposure to respiratory viruses like COVID-19 may increase in crowded, closed-in settings with little air circulation if there are people in the crowd who are sick.
- Avoid all non-essential travel including plane trips, and especially avoid embarking on cruise ships.
See also: Protect YourselfIf COVID-19 is spreading in your community
Take extra measures to put distance between yourself and other people to further reduce your risk of being exposed to this new virus.
- Stay home as much as possible.
- Consider ways of getting food brought to your house through family, social, or commercial networks
If a COVID-19 outbreak happens in your community, it could last for a long time. (An outbreak is when a large number of people suddenly get sick.) Depending on how severe the outbreak is, public health officials may recommend community actions to reduce people’s risk of being exposed to COVID-19. These actions can slow the spread and reduce the impact of disease.Have a plan for if you get sick
- Consult with your health care provider for more information about monitoring your health for symptoms suggestive of COVID-19.
- Stay in touch with others by phone or email. You may need to ask for help from friends, family, neighbors, community health workers, etc. if you become sick.
- Determine who can care for you if your caregiver gets sick.
What to Eat to Boost Your Immune System
What foods can help boost your immune system:
- Citrus Foods -oranges, tangerines, grapefruit
- Red bell peppers
- Green Tea
Other Ways to Boost Your Immune System
According to Dr Katz:
As the new coronavirus continues to spread across the country, having an optimally functioning immune system is more important than ever.
• Keep your stress levels down. It’s a bit of a vicious cycle, of course: The more you stress about the virus, the more likely you are to suffer from it. “Stress can certainly hurt your immune system,” says Morgan Katz, an assistant professor of infectious diseases at Johns Hopkins University. “Do not panic, try to minimize stress.”
Andrew Diamond, chief medical officer of One Medical, a nationwide network of primary-care providers, says the stress hormone cortisol turns off cells in your immune system. He recommends engaging in activities that people find relaxing, such as meditation.
• Exercise. Low- and moderate-intensity exercise naturally lowers cortisol levels and helps with immune-system function, says Dr. Diamond. One Medical recommends 30 to 60 minutes of exercise a day. If you’re apprehensive about germs in the gym, walk or run outside.
But it is important not to go overboard. A recent study found high-performance athletes have an increased risk of infection, says Elizabeth Bradley, medical director of the Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Functional Medicine. “Exercise helps boost the immune system, but we have to be careful not to overexercise because it can weaken your immune system,” she says.
• Get adequate sleep. For adults, that means getting seven to eight hours of sleep a night. Children should get more, depending on their age.
• Make sure your vaccines are up-to-date, especially the flu vaccine.
• Eat plenty of plain yogurt every day. “It’s really an easy way to boost your probiotics and help support your microbiome,” Dr. Katz says. “It helps to support the good bacteria that live in your body, which help to fight bad bacteria or viruses.”
Dr. Katz also suggests avoiding antibiotics unless you must take them because they deplete the good bacteria in the system, leaving you more vulnerable to other infections.
Other foods that can help support the microbiome include garlic, onion, ginger, sauerkraut and fermented foods, says Dr. Bradley.
• Watch your diet. Stick to a healthful, balanced diet filled with lots of colorful fruits and vegetables to ensure you’re getting enough zinc and vitamin D and other important vitamins and minerals. Most experts say you should be able to get enough of these vitamins and minerals through your diet, and extra supplementation isn’t necessary. But because vitamin D deficiency is relatively common, experts do recommend supplementation if levels are low.
Dr. Bradley recommends eating lots of dark green, leafy vegetables and berries, as well as nuts and seeds, and to minimize foods with sugar and trans fats, which aren’t as nutrient-dense.
Your immune system needs fuel, so avoid ultralow-carbohydrate diets, experts say. In addition, drink lots of water and reduce alcohol consumption, which can disrupt your sleep.
Being Quarantined with Kids
I have been working from home for years now and have a ton of posts regarding activities to teach, play, and interact with children.
Please take a look at these blog posts for games, books, printables, etc to do while you are home in quarantine.
- How to Get Your Kids to Appreciate Hiking in Nature
- Letter Tracing Worksheets Free – Teach Kids at Home
- Be a Super Mom with these Valentine’s Day Kids Crafts
- Fall in Love with Scrunchies for Hair – The Best Scrunchie Packs
- Kids Snack Ideas That are Fast and Easy
- Activities for Toddlers at Home
- Farmhouse Girls Room Decor and Inspiration
- 100 Christmas Printable Worksheets
- Kindergarten & Preschool Worksheets
- Things to Do with Kids – While at Home
Keep Your Home Clean
Besides the basic cleaning and sanitizing you may also want to consider an air purifier. They are great for purifying the air against mold, dust, allergies etc…
Coronavirus Infographics – COVID-19
These infographics are from the CDC website:
People with certain auto-immune diseases: This category includes lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, Type 1 diabetes and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, said Patricia Whitley-Williams, chief of pediatric allergy, immunology and infectious diseases at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, and president-elect of the National Foundation of Infectious Diseases.
Such patients are often treated with immunosuppressants – so here too, patients end up being more vulnerable to infections.
Hi Lis thanks for that reply. I did read that when doing my research but could not confirm the source so I did not add it to this post. If you can find the source where she said that I will gladly add it to my post!
It’s not difficult to believe that hashimoto’s hasn’t been mentioned in either the risk group category, or the “safer” one for that matter. Doctors hardly even acknowledge the fact that hashimoto’s is a disease. At least not here. I’ve even seen people to say that because of having hashimoto’s it makes your immune system better than average because it’s on “high alert” to fight off infections. this sounds wrong to me. I ended up in here looking for further information on the topic.
Hi, Zarah, I agree they don’t really know yet.