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Can Problems With Your Thyroid Cause Headaches

What Is Postpartum Thyroiditis

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Postpartum thyroiditis, or inflammation of the thyroid after giving birth, affects 10% of women.3 It often goes undiagnosed because symptoms are much like the “baby blues” that may follow delivery. Women with postpartum thyroiditis may feel very tired and moody.

Postpartum thyroiditis typically happens in two phases, though not everyone with the condition goes through both phases:4

  • The first phase starts 1 to 4 months after giving birth and typically last 1 to 2 months. In this phase, you may have signs and symptoms of hyperthyroidism because the damaged thyroid leaks thyroid hormones out into the bloodstream.
  • The second phase starts about 4 to 8 months after delivery and lasts 6 to 12 months. In this phase, you may have signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism because the thyroid has lost most of its hormones or because the immune attack is over and the thyroid may recover later.

Trouble Concentrating Or Remembering

Many patients with hypothyroidism complain of mental fogginess and trouble concentrating. The way this mental fogginess presents itself varies by person.

In one study, 22% of low-thyroid individuals described increased difficulty doing everyday math, 36% described thinking more slowly than usual and 39% reported having a poorer memory .

In another study of 14 men and women with untreated hypothyroidism, the participants showed difficulty remembering verbal cues .

The causes for this are not yet fully understood, but difficulties in memory improve with treatment of low thyroid hormone .

Difficulties in memory or concentration can happen to everyone, but if they are sudden or severe, they could be a signal of hypothyroidism.

Summary: Hypothyroidism can cause mental fogginess and difficulty concentrating. It may also impair certain kinds of memory.

Changes In Menstrual Cycle Or Sexual Performance

Hormonal changes are closely linked to sexual function. If you find that your period is becoming irregular, heavier, or more painful than before, or if you are experiencing stronger emotional symptoms tied to PMS, your thyroid might be the cause.

You might also experience difficulty with sexual performance or enjoyment. If you are having difficulty with libido or achieving orgasm or if you cannot maintain an erection, you could also be struggling with a thyroid-related symptom.

While these are uncomfortable issues to talk about, they should absolutely be addressed with us to rule out not only thyroid trouble but also anything else that might quietly be causing these issues.

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What Is Thyroid Cancer

Thyroid cancer happens when cancer cells form from the tissues of the thyroid gland.

Most people with thyroid cancer have a thyroid nodule that does not cause any symptoms. If you do have symptoms, you may have swelling or a lump in your neck. The lump may cause problems swallowing. Some people get a hoarse voice.

To tell if the lump or nodule is cancerous, your doctor will order certain tests. Most thyroid nodules are not cancerous.

For more information about thyroid cancer, visit the National Cancer Institute’s thyroid cancer page.

Thyroid Conditions And Digestive Problems

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On the other hand, it could be something seemingly unrelated.

The thyroid gland is a small, butterfly-shaped gland located in the front of the neck. It is responsible for making and distributing thyroid hormones, which regulate metabolism and help the body use energy. When the thyroid gland is not functioning properly, it can cause a wide range of problems including digestive issues. Many people with chronic gastrointestinal problems cannot find relief because they have an undiagnosed thyroid condition.

Hyperthyroidism, or too much thyroid hormone in the body, causes bodily functions to speed up. Common symptoms of hyperthyroidism are a racing heart, nervousness, hand tremors, anxiety, difficulty sleeping and an enlarged neck. Digestive symptoms of an overactive thyroid can include difficulty swallowing, vomiting, diarrhea, lactose intolerance, liver problems, H. pylori bacterial infection and weight loss.

Hypothyroidism, or too little thyroid hormone in the body, can cause the bodys processes to slow down. This may cause symptoms such as fatigue, dry skin, depression, constipation, forgetfulness and weight gain. Digestive symptoms of an underactive thyroid can include dyspepsia , low stomach acid, poor absorption, constipation, gallstones, anemia and bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine.

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Headache Manifestations In Thyroid Disorders

A study by Carvalho et al delved into the prevalence, characteristics, and treatment of headaches associated with recent onset hypothyroidism.

Results showed that at least 34% of the subjects complained of headaches, with majority of them localizing the event in the fronto-parietal region. 37% suffered from temporally-located headaches, while 15% pinpointed the location to the back of their heads.

As for the features, 63% described their headaches as pulsatile, while 78% verbalized that they lasted anywhere from 4 to 72 hours.

Most described their headaches as something moderate to severe in intensity, while 60% complained that it came with nausea and vomiting. 47% of the respondents, on the other hand, described the headache as unilateral in location.

The complaints of the subjects shed light into the fact that headaches associated with thyroid disorders vary in characteristic and prevalence.

Some people characterize such headaches as constant and non-throbbing, affecting both sides of the head. For some, they do not come with nausea or vomiting, which make them seem like tension headaches more than migraine headaches.

However different the symptoms might be, experts agree on one thing: the severity is proportional with severity of the disease. This means if that the hypothyroidism symptoms worsen, it is expected that the headaches symptoms will aggravate as well.

Who Is At Risk For Thyroid Cancer

About three times as many women get thyroid cancer as men. The number of women with thyroid cancer is also going up. By 2020, the number of women with thyroid cancer is expected to double, from 34,000 women to more than 70,000 women.9

Thyroid cancer is more common in women who:10

  • Are between the ages of 25 and 65
  • Had radiation therapy to the head or neck, especially in childhood, to treat cancer
  • Have a history of goiter
  • Have a family history of thyroid cancer

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Migraine Headaches And Thyroid Disease

According to the International Headache Society, around 30% of people with an underactive thyroid gland will have a history of headaches. Though the causes for this are poorly understood, we know that women are disproportionately affected and that the pain is usually unilateral , pulsing, and often accompanied by nausea or vomiting. Moreover, half will have had a history of migraines prior to their diagnosis. The severity of the symptoms tends to rise and fall in tandem with the severity of the disease.

What We Know So Far About Migraine And Hypothyroidism

The Thyroid And Migraine Headaches Connection

Researchers have only begun to investigate possible links between migraine and endocrine disorders like hypothyroidism. The most recent studies available support the idea that migraine might be associated with several endocrine disorders, including insulin resistance and . But, at the moment, researchers face a chicken-and-egg scenario: Does a condition like migraine cause hypothyroidism, or might hypothyroidism cause migraine?

The link between hypothyroidism and headache, in general, is fairly well established. The International Society even includes a diagnostic code for headache attributed to hypothyroidism. Again, though, the specific link between these two conditions remains unclear.

One study, published in 2017, concluded that headache disorders of many types may be associated with an increased risk for the development of new onset hypothyroidism. But more recent studies have hinted at a bidirectional association between hypothyroidism and migraine, meaning the two conditions are related and each may affect the other simultaneously. One study suggested migraine may be an indicator of subclinical hypothyroidism however, other researchers called out possible statistical concerns related to that studys conclusions. In short, researchers need much more time to study the relationship between migraine and .

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Can You Blame Your Headaches On Your Thyroid

People with migraines had 40 percent higher risk of thyroid problems, study suggests

HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, Sept. 29, 2016 — People with migraines and other headache disorders have a greater risk of a thyroid disease known as hypothyroidism, a new study suggests.

Hypothyroidism occurs when the body doesn’t produce sufficient amounts of thyroid hormone. This can cause mood swings, weight gain, hair loss, fatigue, constipation and irregular menstrual cycles, according to researchers at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine.

The study included more than 8,400 people. The volunteers were followed for 20 years as part of a medical monitoring project.

People with pre-existing headache disorders — such as cluster or tension headaches — had a 21 percent higher risk of hypothyroidism, the investigators found. And people with a possible migraine disorder had a 41 percent greater risk.

The findings suggest that people with migraines are particularly susceptible to hypothyroidism. However, the study doesn’t prove that one condition causes the other.

Migraine affects about 12 percent of Americans. Hypothyroidism affects about 2 percent. The conditions are rarely life-threatening. But these conditions can cause decreased quality of life if patients don’t get adequate treatment, the study authors noted.

What might link headaches to hypothyroidism isn’t clear, the researchers pointed out.

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What Causes An Overactive Thyroid Gland

The thyroid gland is found in the neck. It produces hormones that are released into the bloodstream to control the body’s growth and metabolism. These hormones are called thyroxine and triiodothyronine.

They affect processes such as heart rate and body temperature, and help convert food into energy to keep the body going.

In hyperthyroidism, the thyroid gland produces too much thyroxine or triiodothyronine, which speeds up the body’s metabolism.

There are several possible underlying causes, the most common being Graves’ disease, in which the body’s immune system targets the thyroid gland and causes it to produce too much of the thyroid hormones.

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What Is Dizziness Actually

We come across the term dizziness all the time, or we often feel dizzy, but have you ever wondered what it is actually? Dizziness is a term that refers to an array of sensations such as feeling woozy, faint, unsteady, or weak. Sometimes people feel like their surroundings are spinning around them and say theyre dizzy, but in fact, thats just a form of dizziness called vertigo. Lightheadedness is one of the most common reasons why people schedule an appointment to see their doctor or health care provider.

It is worth noting that dizziness is not a standalone disease or health condition, but rather a symptom that occurs due to a wide range of health problems. Thats exactly why dizziness is not something you should ignore. Multiple diseases can make us feel dizzy, but your doctor can make an accurate diagnosis and find the root cause.

Could Thyroid Problems Cause Skin Rashes

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Could Thyroid Problems Cause Skin Rashes?

There are many symptoms to be expected when it comes to the different thyroid problems, given how important and involved the thyroid is with body functions.

But are skin rashes expected to develop as well? Can skin rashes be used to detect the underlying presence of a thyroid problem of some kind?

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Early Signs Of Thyroid Problems

If you are experiencing changes in your weight, vision problems, or increased sensitivity to shifts in temperature, you might have a thyroid problem. Instead of ignoring these early warning signs, you should schedule an appointment at the Medical Transformation Center in Louisville, KY. We can use a variety of techniques to address your thyroid problems and improve your health.

How To Treat Thyroid Problems

Now that you know more about the problems that indicate thyroid problems, what should you do? Of course, the first thing you should do is ask your doctor about your symptoms. Depending on your symptoms, you may have another condition that needs to be treated.

However, if you are experiencing several of these symptoms at a time, you most likely have a thyroid condition.

Before you start receiving treatments, first youll need to work with your doctor to get tested. Typically this will include blood tests to check the levels of T4 and T3 in your blood. When the tests come back, your doctor will help you know that to do next.

Usually, treatments include hormone replacement therapy. Iodine supplements may be prescribed in order to treat goiters.

However, if your symptoms are severe, it can be a sign of thyroid cancer. In which case youll need to visit a thyroid surgeon to remove the cancerous cells. Chemotherapy and radiation oncology are also viable options.

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Common Thyroid Symptoms You Probably Arent Aware Of

The following symptoms are fairly common among those with thyroid disease even if theyre a surprise to you.

Other symptoms of thyroid disease include hoarseness, mood swings, fertility problems, peripheral neuropathy, constipation, poor temperature regulation, muscle weakness, eye pain and pressure, vertigo, depression, headaches, shortness of breath and wounds that heal slowly.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms and havent been diagnosed with thyroid disease, we suggest contacting your Portland ENT specialist for an examination.

Causes Of Overactive Thyroid

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An overactive thyroid occurs when your thyroid gland produces too much of the thyroid hormones.

This results in a high level of thyroid hormones called triiodothyronine and thyroxine in your body.

The thyroid can become overactive for a number of reasons. Some of the main causes are described below.

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What Causes Thyroid Disease

Our bodies operate on a 24-hour cycle known as circadian rhythm, which is regulated by the master circadian clock located in a part of the brain called the suprachiasmatic nucleus located in the hypothalamus.

The SCN releases different hormones that help maintain balance in the body and control different bodily functions, including your sleep-wake cycle. One of these hormones, thyrotropin, stimulates the thyroid to trigger the release of thyroid hormones. If the thyroid is overactive or underactive, this can interfere with thyrotropin production and your overall circadian rhythm.

The condition known as hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid, occurs when the thyroid does not produce enough hormones. According to current U.S. estimates, 1 in 20 people aged 12 and older have hypothyroidism. These patients are often treated with artificial thyroid hormones.

Hyperthyroidism, or overactive thyroid, affects about 1 in 100 people in the U.S. This condition arises when the thyroid produces an excessive amount of hormones. Patients with hyperthyroidism are often prescribed medications that lower their thyroid hormone levels.

Lastly, iodine intake can play a role in thyroid health. The thyroid gland uses iodine to produce hormones, so an inadequate or excessive amount of iodine in your diet can contribute to thyroid disease.

The Statistics Of Migraines And Hypothyroidism

About 12% of Americans experience migraines either chronically or episodically. Only around 2% of Americans suffer from hypothyroidism. However, about one-third of that 2% with underactive thyroid have a history of headaches.

  • Half of the patients diagnosed with hypothyroidism have a history of migraines before the diagnosis.
  • Women are three times more likely to experience migraines than men. According to Johns Hopkins University, the ratio is 18% to 6%
  • Women are 18 times more likely to suffer hypothyroidism than men, according to the Society for Endocrinology.
  • In women, just over half of migraines are related to the menstrual period. However, the average age of a woman diagnosed with hypothyroidism is 51, when they are undergoing or have completed menopause, which typically causes alleviation of migraine symptoms.
  • Since migraines can persist after menopause, hypothyroidism may be related to migraines however, there is also a strong argument that migraines may predispose a patient to hypothyroidism in return.

The Cincinnati College of Medicine found that individuals with a history of migraines showed a 41% increased risk of developing hypothyroidism in comparison to the general population.

Another study at the University of Cincinnati by researcher Susan Pinny, Ph.D., found hypothyroidism shows not only a higher association in women, but the risk of developing it increases with age, obesity, and certain medications.

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What Causes Dizziness

People can feel dizzy due to more reasons than one, and, in some situations, it can be difficult to pinpoint a specific cause of dizziness. In order to determine the cause of dizziness and narrow down the list of potential problems, doctors take into account factors such as duration of dizziness and the presence of other symptoms.

Dizziness tends to occur due to inner ear problems, underlying health condition, motion sickness, and as a side effect of a wide range of medications. When it comes to inner ear problems that cause dizziness, the inner ear sends signals to the brain that are inconsistent with signals that sensory nerves and eyes receive. Its useful to mention that a persons balance depends on the combined action of eyes, sensory nerves, and inner ear, which comprise the sensory system. The brain is trying to work out this confusion with inconsistent signals, but during the process, a person experiences vertigo. Common inner ear problems that cause dizziness include Menieres disease , infection of the vestibular nerve, migraine, and benign paroxysmal positional vertigo which causes brief, intense, and a false sense that you are moving and spinning.

You can also feel dizzy due to:

  • Changes in blood pressure
  • Anxiety disorders

What Is The Thyroid

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The thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland in the back of the throat. It plays a pivotal role in controlling metabolism, producing hormones that are responsible for many of the bodys daily functions. Every tissue and organ in the human body is affected by the thyroid.

Thyroid disease occurs under a variety of conditions. Sometimes, too little thyroid hormone is produced, resulting in hypothyroidism, a condition in which the metabolism slows down, causing symptoms such as weight gain, fatigue and depression. An overactive thyroid produces too much thyroid hormone, speeding up the bodys metabolism hyperthyroidism causes a faster heartrate, weight loss, tremors and more.

Other thyroid diseases include nodules, small lumps that form on the thyroid goiter, an enlarged thyroid and several types of thyroid cancer, most of which respond very well to treatment.

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