Overactive thyroid symptoms
High thyroid levels

On this page we take a closer look at overactive thyroid symptoms to help you identify and know what to expect from high thyroid levels. You can also pop over to the under active thyroid symptoms page to read more about the hypoactive thyroid.

An over active thyroid can also be referred to as hyperthyroidism or thyrotoxicosis. Sometimes it is also called Graves' disease although Grave's disease is actually the combination of thyrotoxicosis, goitre and protruding eyes.

Let's take a closer look at the symptoms of high thyroid levels,

Overactive thyroid symptoms:

Behavioral changes

Feeling restless, anxious and nervous:

You are feeling constantly driven to be active, to do something, not being able to sit down and relax. Even when made to sit down, you will fidget and look around for something to do. You may feel that your whole being is rushing out of control and this is accompanied with feelings of anxiety and nervousness. You may feel like taking tranquilizers, "to calm you down."

Mood swings:

Overactive thyroid symptoms The one moment you will feel euphoric, floating on cloud 9 and the next you will be crawling in the depths of despair and deep dark depression. Your mood may swing from being irritable and unreasonable to bursting into tears over nothing.

This overactive thyroid symptom can be very hard to deal with and can affect your relationships with your loved ones dramatically.

Luckily, it will settle down and return to normal with the correct treatment.


You have suddenly a lot to say, very quickly and can't seem to stop. Listening to others fall by the wayside as you need to talk more and more. In most instances the patient will not be aware of the extend of their non-stop talking and will be oblivious to the effect they are having on their audience.

Constant tiredness and exhaustion:

Despite feeling the need to do, do, do, you are feeling that you are running out of energy very quickly. It can feel very frustrating to start something with much enthusiasm only to realize that you are not able to finish it due to becoming drained with the demand of your overactive metabolism.


Swollen neck:

Many people that exhibit overactive thyroid symptoms will have a goiter or a swollen neck. In most cases the neck will look fuller and tight collars may become tighter. It happens very seldom that a goiter will cause pressure inside the neck. The swelling is on the outside and will not affect swallowing and breathing.

Skin, nails and hair:

The skin may appear thin, hot to the touch, red and clammy. The palms will particularly be red and deep blushing that last for longer than normal may become a problem.

Nails may separate easily and will look dirty. Hair may become soft, fine and difficult to control. Hair fall will be more than normal and thinning out will also occur.

Circulation, heart and lungs

Feeling hot and sweaty:

Increased circulation and metabolism will have you feeling hot. Your skin will appear red and feel hot to the touch. Even after some minor exertion you will sweat excessively and feel unbearingly hot. Sleeping at night may be difficult due to feeling so uncomfortably hot.


As the metabolism speeds up the heart has to beat faster to keep up. You may become aware of your heart pounding or fluttering in your chest, especially at night or when you exercise. Due to the general lack of stamina, you may also feel short of breath.


Increased appetite:

You may feel hungry all the time. Eating large meals, constant snacking and getting up at night to eat will have no effect on that constant feeling of being hungry.

Weight loss:

As the metabolism speeds up, eating will not be enough. You may start to burn your fat stores and even some of the body tissue. Despite eating more, you may lose weight rapidly. In some instances this can be accompanied with bouts of diarrhea.

Muscles and bones

Muscle weakness:

General weakening of the muscles, especially around the trunk area, will make finishing tasks very difficult due to tiring out and being unable to continue when you need it most. Thinning of the bone will cause osteoporosis that will lead to aches and pains in the back.


High thyroid levels will cause tremors or shakiness of the hands. It is present all the time, but most noticeable when you hold your hands outstretched. This is probably due to the increased sensitivity to adrenaline.

Sexual health

Periods may stop altogether or can appear at longer or shorter intervals, with little blood loss or just spotting. Fertility may be reduced and miscarriage can become a great risk during pregnancy.

Although the libido may increase, intercourse may be uncomfortable and exhausting due to weakening muscles, heart palpitations and shortness of breath.

Reading through all this may be disheartening but all the overactive thyroid symptoms can very successfully resolved with treatment. Do not attempt to home-treat this yourself. A wrongly or untreated overactive thyroid can develop into a full-blown thyroid storm and is life threatening.

For more information about the thyroid, have a look at these pages:

What does the thyroid do?
Signs of thyroid problems
Under active thyroid symptoms
Thyroid disease treatment
Thyroid storm symptoms

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What does the thyroid do?
Signs of thyroid problems
Under active thyroid symptoms
Over active thyroid symptoms
Thyroid disease treatment
Thyroid storm symptoms