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Can anyone describe what "Brain Fog" is?
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Can anyone describe what "Brain Fog" is?

You lot out there so often refer to "brain fog". Can anyone give their version of what it means? I'm not sure if it's what I think it is or something else. Does it mean that you just can't think straight? Like you're somewhere else? You know what you want to say but it comes out muddled and you feel stupid? Or does that just mean I'm naturally stupid!!!
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31 Comments Post a Comment
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215021_tn?1224886057
Hi there - hope all is well with you tonight?
Strangely I used to have alot of what I described as 'fuzzy headedness' over the last couple of years but when I went onto a gluten free diet it cleared.  I used to feel like i couldn't think straight about things, got confused easily, couldn't remember things 10 minutes after I had been told them and would forget important dates etc.  It was really distressing and can be one of the sympoms of menopause.  Again it all fitted in with the picture of my going into menopause but the numbers didn't add up and all the tests proved I wasn't menopausal.  I tried the gluten free diet as a last resort, (for lots of other symptoms as well as the 'fog'), and had fantastic results.  I am now completely gluten free - not easy to begin with as I live for bread! - but the difference to my energy levels and 'brain fog' has been amazing.
I don't know if this is helpful but maybe it could be linked with what you were saying previously about the early menopause thing?
J x
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Avatar_f_tn
hi i have had brain fog and to me its like you cant think straight i do things on auto pilot then dont remember doing it,  go to say a sentence and forget the right word to use my family now blame me for everything that goes missing i have put things away then forgot doing it from what you say id say you have brain fog.before i was diagnosed hypo i had a job but ended up so self concious about talking to people and not being able to put in the right words and forgetting to do things that i ended up leaving i didnt realise that it was a symptom of thyroid problems
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440728_tn?1234648902
Thanks so much for your reply, hope you don't mind but I've just sent you a message.
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Avatar_f_tn
Brain fog for me when I was in my hypohe// was forgetting things. Like the time I was in Walgreens dropping off a prescription for my son. I got there, dropped it off, and then got some other things and got in line. Then I thought "did I drop off the prescription?" Had no memory of doing it. Had to go back to the pharmacy to make sure I actually did it.  Then another time it was late and I got into bed. Then I thought "Oh, I forgot to put the laundry in the machine."  I walked into my bathroom, dumped the hamper out onto the floor, sorted out all the clothes, then put them back into the hamper and got into bed. Then I thought "did I put them in the machine."  Nope, walked back in and there it all was in the hamper!  Or when I got to Target once, walked in and stood there and couldn't remember where I was or why I was there. So I left and had to actually look at the sign outside to see where I was.  It was funny at times but also frightening.  
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197575_tn?1215536224
My tsh is so high right now in preparation for a wbs to check for cancer recurrence that I can't remember the names of common items and I can't complete thoughts.  I am actually doing well typing right now, but I often confuse the letters.  It just feels like you are out of body sometimes.  My short term recall is really bad right now. It got better when I was regulated on synthroid, but definitely not the same since my tt.
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213044_tn?1236531060
I have to put my meds in a pill organizer, because I often can't remember five minutes after taking them, whether I took them or not.
I have to look at the container to see if the pills are in the organizer, or in my stomach.

I type like I'm dyslexic half the time, and it takes forever to correct spelling in posts. I've forgotten how to spell some words. I can proofread a post, hit the submit button, and then see letters and words missing.

I can be talking along and forget a word as it reaches the tip of my tongue. I stammer and stumble trying to come up with the word.

I write notes continuously, and then forget to look for them.

Sometimes my thought processes are sluggish, and it really is like a fog. Decisions can be a real problem, like, am I turning right?, or left?, or shall I just sit here for a while?

And I spend half the day telling people here what tests are and what doctors should be doing.

HAhahahaha!!!!!  (Oh, yeah, hit the "submit button", stupid)

(No, it's "post comment", Einstein.)
(Is that how you spell Einstein...?)
(Just hit the button!!)

It's kinda like that.
What were we discussing?
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393685_tn?1325870933
It's like you can't focus on anything at all. "Like you are literally in a fog!" You know you have to do things - but you can't put anything into a priority.

It is a joke around the forum - b/c we all know - but it is so frustrating on a day to day basis.  I hated it and I thank God every day - for making it go away.  That was so depressing for me - b/c I was always "on top" of everything and I was useless for so long when I had that.
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374933_tn?1291085384
It's like uh, let's see.....I knew it a second ago. Oh yeah, no that wasn't it. Um, I forget.
What was the question again?
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362809_tn?1233510154
A good example is the following:

Yesterday I was searching all over the place for my TV remote.  I couldn't find it anywhere.  After 15 minutes of searching, I realized it was in my hand.

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440728_tn?1234648902
I was feeling really sorry for myself today, but I just checked out these replies as I didn't get chance to come on yesterday and they are so good. Thanks again to all. They are all really good descriptions and I think I can thoroughly say I have "brain fog" now. At times I thought I was losing my mind. But I have to say those replies from AR-10 and TheCarman have absolutely killed me, they are so funny! And so bloody right about the way I feel since this whole thing started!!!
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219241_tn?1357815389
Brain fog....erg! Imagine driving along the road and then realising you hadn't even realised you were driving....daydreaming......feeling of unrealness.....then as you drive you suddenly realise you ARE driving so better pay attention.....but did you just go through a red light? Oh goodness! Finally park the car...now what was I coming here for? Oh I have my bag with mail to post...didn't I do that yesterday? Oh well, I'm here now.....walking walking walking....oh, where's the post office again? Oh yeah two blocks back...sheeeeeet! Ok, good now, got the brain in gear...How much you say? Oh I can't remember what my coins are supposed to represent......Oh how I just want to lie down and go to sleep...........what was I here for again?
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Avatar_n_tn
Re: Brain Fog
I''m not going to fix my typing to help illustrate.  I'm at a TSH of 47 right now, having been off synthroid for a month for RAI.  SO brain fog is my main weather pattern at the moment.  You all nailed the descriptions PERFECTLY.  I find typing to be laborious and slow in order to be accurate.  Can't get my thoughts into the right words.  It's like drivinging aroudn in a car with really really dirty windows and you just have to manage the best you can without being able to clean them!
I have been back on my 175 mcg of synthroid for 5 days...don't think it's kicking in yet...I have Cytomel too, but the first day I took it I was so sick from RAI that i quitt stopped the cytomel thinking it may be contributing to my nausea...Now I'm feeling a bit bettter and may add it back in...I really could use that jump statrt.
Emmy
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201897_tn?1245845934
Brain fog is....

..... Making dinner for the dog and putting the dish down in front of your husband.

..... Taking the housework to-do list to the store instead of the grocery list.

..... Being confused at finding one shoe in the fridge and then not being able to figure out where the other one is.

......Remembering something to put on one of your lists but forgetting what it was by the time you take the 5 steps to wherever the list is.

...... Making up descriptions for things you can't remember the real words for.  Example:  hat rack becomes hat hangy uppy thingy.
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488668_tn?1215632971
Everything you have posted I think I have done. My boyfriend laughs at me because yesterday I couldnt remember the first name of our president here in US.......My son is 9 and daughter soon to be 8 know how bad I am. So they will listen to me when I tell them they cant go outside and then wait a little and ask again........by the time they are outside my boyfriend looks at me and I say ....What? OH......and this happens on a regular basis but they know the "routine".......lol

There was also a time when I ment to say flip flop during a discussion and called it the "thing thong"...........I always here about that one!

There have been many trips to the store only to find out that I dont have my wallet.
I have a can of food in the freezer and never recalled doing it......the list goes ON

This fog is almost knowing your hear sometimes but feeling your not....almost as if your distant. Knowing its a sunny beautiful day outside but really not seeing/feeling it.

I have also been asked during college many times on smoke break what I was smoking because I have been told my eyes dialate...........I honestly dont do any drugs I told them. I still dont understand why that happens?

Well I guess we call go through problems.....Just SOME MORE THAN OTHERS:)

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440728_tn?1234648902
Your answers are so funny and until now I thought I was the only one who could open my fridge door to find a packet of cigarettes in there! I was so spooked. I kept asking my husband why would I even think of doing it, coz it seemed such a weird thing to do! And determinedly going all the way up the stairs to get something, only to get there and then stand there... and stand there....with absolutely no idea what I came for. But the thing that has been scaring me the most is the one that nearly all of you have described. I call it the glass bubble feeling. Like I'm locked inside my own world with a fluffy head, and I can see outside but it all seems to be going on around me. Wow am I glad I posted this question. I thought I was losing it!
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362809_tn?1233510154
Nyxie, your comment really hit home.  I spent an entire summer referring to every object I encountered as "the thingie" or "the whoosie whatsie".  As I'm going to be going back to hypohe\\ this summer, I'm going to try to figure out a new word for nouns.

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374933_tn?1291085384
"Brain Fog"

The response to my wife when she accuses me of not listening to her.
It's worked for years.
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Avatar_f_tn
I was arranging a football team for their photo and upon reading one player’s jersey I addressed him by that name so he could move over a little, adding the word Mr. as a courtesy.  Then I turned to another player and upon reading his jersey I asked him to do the same thing, of course again adding Mr. as a courtesy.  This time I heard slight giggles.  Then I turned to yet another player to go through the same thing, only this time I proclaimed, ‘Gee you have the, no wait, no, you have the same name as the other two, oh wow!’  With that it got silent; then a coach said, ‘Ah, that’s our team name.’

Naturally, everyone cracked up.

Of course, this was standing in front of a bunch of monster football players in uniform, plus some all-pulled-together coaches and stern let’s-get-this-over-with managers.  Worst of all it was in front of my sarcastic, smarty-pants co-worker - who likes to dog my every misstep!  When I looked over at him, all he could do was roll his eyes.

I'll never forget that one.  I think it was brain fog, no?
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209384_tn?1231171906
Ok, here goes the typing.  No spellcheck or changing the words.  This is brave of me.

i used to put my little boy in time out and then forget about him.  My husband waould say, "What on earth did he do?  He's been in there for an hour."  I'd forgotten all about him.  Or hi'd finally say "Mama, can I get up now?"  and I'd say, "whatta I care?"  he'd say, "well, you're the one sho put me in time out."   "Oh,"  I'd say, "yeah, I think you've learned your lesson."    The poor child lived in horrid fear of being put in time out.  LOL

Used to put the ice cream in the fridge instaed of the freezer.  Wore 2 different shoes more than once.  Have worn 2 different earrings.  Always going into a room and then just turning around and walking out.  Don't even care why I was there.

If you really want to hear about brain fog check out the Chicken Club link Nyxie posted again.  
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Avatar_f_tn
For me, the most obvious part of it is forgetting the name for something.  LIke I'll say, can you hand me the...the...the thing with the handle....  

Kateee
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Avatar_f_tn
All of these posts are such true descriptions!  I have always felt the brain fog as a feeling of being "out of it" (sort of like the description somebody posted of the fluffy clouds) or like somebody spiked my drink with something to "sloooowwwwwwww me down......"..I didn't like driving much for some time, it was a very scary feeling when driving down the freeway being passed by very noisy BIG trucks as my "alertness" had just about gone, the noise of the traffic seemed amplified, and I must have been driving about in a daze!  However, I also found it a very difficult feeling to describe to my doctor because by the time I got there I'd usually forgotten to tell him or her how I had been feeling......and was usually too tired to care anyway!!!  
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200220_tn?1361955154
I have a question to ask of those of you that posted.  Do you feel "normal" at times and then back to the brain fog which for me is tenseness and feeling fear because of it along with all the other symptoms you all mentioned.   I don't understand how I can feel good no brain fog or other symptoms one day and the next have everything back.  I am on a low dose of synthroid because I can't tolerate more that 37.5 mg.   What do you think am I crazy or not.  How can you feel "normal" one day and yucky the next.  I am grateful that I have a normal day once in a while.  Hopefully this will get more and more as time goes on.  linda
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440728_tn?1234648902
I'm really glad I posted this question because it has generated so so many responses and is still doing so and everyone of them had been fantastic. And I just wanted to say I'm knew to all this thyroid stuff so I'm never sure what is normal or not! But aswell as the other things, I too get what you get so exactly the same as you. When the brain fog comes I panic and feel so scared because to me it's as though I'm losing control. And I also get it one day, then nothing a day or two, then back again for three days, nothing for one day etc. So I honestly know exactly what you mean. So if it means "crazy", then we're both crazy together! We'll keep each other going.
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488668_tn?1215632971
Count me in too! IM CRAZY!.....lmbo.
Yes I can be fine one day or minute and then the next im in that fog or "daze". I often find my self frightened of it too. There has been many times on the express way feeling like im in a fog and often wondering if I would get into an accident. Then I would give my self a panic attack and would have to stop the car!
I was once told ...The crazy ones are the ones that dont think they are crazy......Now those are the ones to watch out for!
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Avatar_f_tn
I put jojo because I can't remember who started this. I have frog fog too. I didn't know what it was. I am hypo, waiting to see if I have ms and going to have surgary on that back side thing, parathyroib. Can parathyroid cause it/. I can't believe so many have this, it is not wonderful but I'm not crazy now. maggiesue65
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200220_tn?1361955154
thats why I love this forum.  You find out there are so many that are just like you and you don't feel alone and crazy.   Isn't it great!  I don't know how to make this something funny but I think we ought to laugh.   linda
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201897_tn?1245845934
A very wise woman once told me "thank goodness for brain fog.  If it weren't for that, all we'd have left is fatigue and pain.  At least the brain fog gives us something to laugh about."  And it's true. :)
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Avatar_f_tn
I just want to thank everyone on here for your posts.I have been diagnosed hypo and i was on levothyroxine for 2 mnths.My endo took me off of it because I told him i felt very weird.I feel totally out of it and I feel like i can't think straight and I have brain fog.That is the best way to describe it.BRAIN FOG! Ugh I cant stand feeling like this.My primary Dr. put me on a low dose of levothyroxine because I was borderline hypothyroid.I kept telling him I felt weird and he said to continue to take it since my numbers were good.I finally told him I wanted to go to an endo.My endo took me off of it because he said that I might not need it since I was borderline.I will go to my endo in Dec so he can check my numbers.I think I am feeling this way because of this med still in my system.Even if it is a lose dose.Because, I wasn't feeling like this before the meds.I didn't have brain fog or felt out of it and i sure didn't feel anxious.Hopefully I will get answers soon and start to feel better.
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Avatar_m_tn
What were the numbers that the Endo thought were so good that you did not need meds?  How can you be sure that it was the meds causing the brain fog and not that your Thyroid hormone levels were too low?  We really need to have a look at your test results and reference ranges from the lab report to give our own assessment about your status.  
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8107477_tn?1396561241
LOL like others here I can relate to the symptoms of "Brain fog"

Funny thing is, I was just writing my name on my thyroxine tablets when I noticed this post and I had to laugh, the reason I write my name on them is because I keep my tablets in a divider box with my partner, his are on the left, mine are on the right,(although I would haveto check that again just to be sure) I only take thyroxine and nothing else so they are the only strip of tablets on my side, but I am still never sure they are mine unless I have my name on them. Even then (i haveto keep thyroxine in the fridge) I have to check the back of the strip of tablets with the box in the fridge just to be sure
Also at work, I work on a computer typing out consignment notes and billing clients for the consignment note, I would be staring at the parcel, and at the computer screen wondering, what was I doing, and making no sense of what I was doing for a few minutes, then it's like, oh that's right, I'm typing out a consignment note for this client.. duhh me

Often I will get up out of my chair at home stand for like 15 mins and wonder why I got up, or wonder why I was in that room in the first place OR if before I was sitting.. often I would sit back down, and it's a light bulb moment and I would think, Oh I remember now that's what I was going to do, or to get, and when I get or do the thing, I wonder, what did I need this for, or why did I want to do that.
These moments often last just a few mins, worst was like 45mins but I am getting useto it
My partner gets annoyed because he would be speaking to me about some thing, or some event coming up and I am positive I am listening to him, but a few mins later he would ask me what we were talking about and for the life of me, I do not know, or it takes a while for me to even get an idea of what it was, so I would spout a few words like, you were talking about going to that resturant with thingamajigg and thingamabob lol
I can laugh now but usually at the time it gets him quite irritated with me.

I seem to notice it more and more lately but you just take the good days with the bad days and move on.

There are many other moments but my recall short term is a shocker, so I couldn't really say

what I can say is thank god for the squiggly lines under spelling mistakes, because without them, you'd prolly be reading typonese  lol
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Avatar_m_tn
Brain fog doesn't have to remain a permanent state.  How about posting your thyroid related test results and reference ranges shown on the lab report and let members assess the status of your testing and treatment?  Also, if tested for Vitamin D, B12 and ferritin, please post those, with ranges, as well.
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