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Overactive Thyroid (hyperthyroidism) Life Insurance

Getting life insurance is usually fairly easy even if you’ve been diagnosed with an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism). In most cases, hyperthyroidism itself is a fairly low-risk condition even though it causes some unpleasant symptoms, such as:

  • An irregular or fast heart rate (palpitations)
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Anxiety, nervousness, and irritability
  • Difficulty sleeping

You may get these symptoms when the thyroid (a small butterfly-shaped gland in your neck) produces too many of the hormones which control things like your heart rate and body temperature.

Although an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) can affect anyone, it occurs in women around 10 times more than it does in men; and is most likely to happen between the ages of 20 and 40.

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Does life insurance payout for an overactive thyroid?

YES – your life insurance will pay a cash lump sum to your family if you die from an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism), or something linked to it.

Whilst an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) is not generally viewed as a serious disease it can, in rare cases, lead to a more severe condition known as a thyroid storm if it isn’t treated or if it’s poorly controlled. A thyroid storm can be life-threatening, and symptoms can include:

  • Diarrhoea and vomiting
  • Yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice)
  • Confusion and/or loss of consciousness

Does critical illness cover payout for an overactive thyroid?

Even though hyperthyroidism is not considered to be serious and is not something that will trigger a payout on your critical illness cover, this type of insurance does normally include conditions linked to an overactive thyroid, including:

  • Thyroid cancer

Critical illness cover can be available at normal prices if your overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) is well controlled, and you aren’t currently waiting to have surgery for the condition. If you are awaiting surgery, you may have to wait until after your surgery when you’ve been given the all-clear from your doctors.

Does income protection cover overactive thyroid?

Income protection can help to reduce any financial difficulties you suffer from taking time off work because of your health. Provided that you didn’t already have your medical condition when you originally bought your policy, you should be covered.

Income protection will payout for an overactive thyroid to cover:

  • Household bills
  • Rent and mortgage payments
  • Loan repayments
  • Living costs

The usual amount covered by most insurers who offer income protection is normally 60% of your gross income and you should be able to claim on your cover for 12 or 24 months.

Life insurance with an overactive thyroid

Can I still get life insurance if I have an overactive thyroid?

YES – most insurers will be able to offer life insurance if you have an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism). What’s more, the cover is usually available at no extra cost if your overactive thyroid is well controlled with medication for at least 3 months or has been cured by other treatment.

In more severe cases, however, an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) can increase the likelihood of you developing:

  • Osteoporosis – a disease resulting in weakened, brittle bones which break very easily
  • Atrial Fibrillation – a heart condition that causes your beat to beat abnormally quickly
  • Heart failure – where the heart is unable to properly pump blood around the body

Questions about overactive thyroid for life insurance

Here are some of the main questions that insurers ask about overactive thyroid on life insurance applications.

  • When were you first diagnosed with hyperthyroidism?
  • Are you currently awaiting any treatment, surgery, scans, or investigations?
  • Do you have a fast or slow heart rate, heart issues, visual problems, or memory loss?
  • Have you been told you have a thyroid lump, cyst, or nodule?
  • Have you been told your thyroid function is now normal?

Do I need a medical in order to get overactive thyroid life insurance?

Some insurers may need medical information or proof, and it’s normal for them to ask your GP or medical professional for this. They may ask you for either of these:

  • Medical report from your GP
  • Nurse check-up (blood tests and medical check)

What is the best life insurance for an overactive thyroid?

This question really comes down to your needs and preferences. When choosing a policy, you should ask yourself what’s important to you and how you’d like your insurance cover to work.

Term life insurance (aka family protection) with overactive thyroid is designed to cover your loved ones with a fixed lump-sum payment should you pass away within an agreed-upon time frame (or term). The amount that pays out will remain the same throughout the term.

Mortgage life insurance with an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) is in most ways the same as family protection but with one key difference; the lump sum payment is designed to cover the balance of a mortgage (capital and interest). This means that as the mortgage balance reduces over time, so does the lump sum payment.

Critical illness cover with an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) should be available if you’ve been diagnosed with this condition and can be available instantly. A payout on this cover would be triggered if you’re diagnosed with a critical illness whilst your policy is active. The cover is generally affordable provided that your hormone levels are normal, and you don’t have any other health problems.

Income protection with an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) is intended to cover a percentage of your gross income if you need to take time off work due to your health. This type of cover is generally available to people with hyperthyroidism but may come with exclusions for thyroid-related illnesses – so be sure to check with your provider.

Family income benefit with an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) can be a more affordable option than other types of cover and you should have no problems getting protected, even if you have hyperthyroidism.

Medical conditions linked to an overactive thyroid

Aside from causing symptoms of its own, it is not uncommon for hyperthyroidism to be linked with other conditions – or increase your chances of developing them. Some examples are:

Common questions about overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)

Below are some of the more frequently asked questions about an overactive thyroid and what it’s like to have the condition.

How do you feel when you have hyperthyroidism?Some of the most common symptoms of hyperthyroidism are:

Feeling tired, nervous, weak, or moody
A fast or irregular heartbeat
Trouble breathing, even when resting
Trouble sleeping
Hand tremors
Feeling very hot and sweating a lot
Red, itchy skin
What should not be eaten in hyperthyroidism?If you have hyperthyroidism, it is best to avoid foods that are rich in iodine – as this substance can make the thyroid produce too much thyroid hormone, which in turn makes your symptoms worse.
Iodine-rich foods include:

Fish and shellfish
Dairy products
Egg yolks
Seaweed or kelp

In addition, studies suggest that it may be best to avoid soy-based foods as well as caffeine, as these can both also worsen symptoms of an overactive thyroid.
How can I check my thyroid at home?There is a simple, non-invasive test you can do yourself to check for any swelling in your thyroid. The thyroid gland is located at the bottom of your neck, close to your collarbone (don’t mistake Adam’s apple for the thyroid gland).

Whilst looking in a mirror, simply take a sip from a glass of water and watch the lower portion of your neck as you swallow, keeping an eye out for any bulges or protrusions as you do so.

If you do see any bulges or protrusions, speak to your GP for further checks.
Can you gain weight with an overactive thyroid?Even though an overactive thyroid causes you to burn more energy which causes weight loss, it does also increase your appetite which can even cause you to gain weight despite the extra calorie burn.

It is therefore important to ensure that you’re eating healthy foods and getting regular exercise.

Useful resources

The following resources have proven to be helpful to us and may be of interest to anyone looking to find out more about this condition:

NHS – Overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)

NHS Inform – Overactive thyroid: Illnesses & conditions

British Thyroid Foundation – Living with thyroid disorders

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