I was diagnosed aged 15 when I was still in school. I was extremely sporty and suddenly became so unfit. After numerous visits to the doctors I was diagnosed with severe hyperthyroidism thyrotoxicosis and Graves' disease. At the beginning of my diagnosis I was managing but a few weeks later I became really unwell in a short space of time. I was signed off school for one year and had to have bed rest with hospital visits daily. The condition affected every part of my body especially my heart. I had an average heart rate of 140bpm and was on all sorts of medication including propanol 40mg 3x a day. My condition was so severe no one knew how to treat it, it was ‘trial and error’. I had several ‘thyroid storms’ where my body just collapsed. This can be very serious, which for me nearly was. 

I was treated with carbimazole for months and then had radioiodine treatment to try kill my thyroid. The main problem for me was my heart. I couldn't believe in such a short space of time how unwell I had become. I went from playing sports every day to finding it a struggle to walk up one set of stairs. However, it is now four years later and I am much healthier and recovering from the disease.

I want people out there to know that this disease can affect young people just as badly. Although it isn't as common, it still happens. I'm much happier and healthier in myself and want people to know it may take time but you will get there. There will be days when it is more of a struggle but just be patient with your body and don't push it. I’ve overcome this horrible illness and there is treatment out there.