Reasons Why People Get Thyroid Problems And How To Avoid Them
The thyroid gland, shaped like a butterfly, sits quietly in the front region of your neck. Despite its somewhat odd choice of residence, this gland is essential for producing hormones, many of which will affect your overall metabolic rate and your efforts at the gym. If it doesnt function well, youll shortly notice the signs of thyroid problems.
Thyroid issues are surprisingly common, affecting more than 20 million people in America alone. But what do you need to know about it?
When To Call A Doctor
In most cases, problems with your thyroid arent an emergency. If you feel you have some of the symptoms above, you can simply make an appointment with your doctor to discuss testing and treatment options. However, you should call your doctor immediately if:
- Youre very drowsy, cold, and lethargic. This could be the start of a myxedema coma, which is caused by hypothyroidism that eventually leads to unconsciousness and in some cases death.
- You have a rapid pulse, accompanied by a fever, agitation, or delirium.; This can indicate thyrotoxic crisis, a complication of hyperthyroidism.
Its not always easy to know if you have a problem with your thyroid. Knowing some of the common symptoms of an underactive or overactive thyroid will help give you an idea of you need to talk to your doctor.
Talk with your primary care provider about testing and treatment of thyroid issues. They may refer you to an endocrinologist or thyroid specialist for follow-up care.
What Is The Best Thermometer To Use
Most specialists believe that the digital thermometers are not accurate enough and the temp range can vary significantly.; It is recommended to use the old-fashioned mercury thermometer.; The downside of a mercury thermometer is that if it were to break, toxic mercury vapor would be released.
With the Galinstan or mercury thermometer, be sure to shake it down to 95F/35C degrees the night before checking or if doing the adrenal test, right before testing.; Be sure to hold it under your armpit for a full 10 minutes before checking.
While the temperature is recording, you could read a book or website, listen to light music or watch a video.; Be sure not to move around other than the lightest of movements as needed. ;For ways to improve thyroid function, read this article and if you are looking to improve adrenal function than you will want to read;this article.
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How Long Does It Take To Recover From Thyroid Surgery
It will take your body a few weeks to recover after your thyroid is surgically removed . During this time you should avoid a few things, including:
- Submerging your incision under water.
- Lifting an object thats heavier than 15 pounds.
- Doing more than light exercise.
This generally lasts for about two weeks. After that, you can return to your normal activities.
How Can You Tell If You Have A Thyroid Problem
Your thyroid is a gland in the neck that produces hormones responsible for regulating functions involved with metabolism.; When it malfunctions, it could start overproducing or underproducing needed hormones, resulting in a slew of unwanted side effects and threatening your health.;
How can you tell if you have a thyroid problem?; How does hyperthyroidism differ from hypothyroidism?; How can patients in Waco treat these conditions to regain optimal health?; Here are a few things everyone should know.
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Can I Live A Normal Life With A Thyroid Disease
A thyroid disease is often a life-long medical condition that you will need to manage constantly. This often involves a daily medication. Your healthcare provider will monitor your treatments and make adjustments over time. However, you can usually live a normal life with a thyroid disease. It may take some time to find the right treatment option for you and control your hormone levels, but then people with these types of conditions can usually live life without many restrictions.
Causes: Pituitary Gland Problems
Thyroid disease may begin in the pituitary gland. The pituitary is located at the base of your brain. It controls the functions of many other glands in the body, including the thyroid. This gland produces TSH, which signals the thyroid gland to make thyroid hormones.
If there is a problem with your pituitary and not enough TSH is produced, thyroid problems can result. Inflammation of the thyroid and taking certain medications can also cause low thyroid hormone levels.
Can Thyroid Disease Cause Problems Getting Pregnant
Both hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism can make it harder for you to get . This is because problems with the thyroid hormone can upset the balance of the hormones that cause ovulation. Hypothyroidism can also cause your body to make more prolactin, the hormone that tells your body to make breastmilk. Too much prolactin can prevent .
Thyroid problems can also affect the . Your periods may be heavier or irregular, or you may not have any periods at all for several months or longer .
Is There A Higher Risk Of Developing Thyroid Disease If I Have Diabetes
If you have diabetes, youre at a higher risk of developing a thyroid disease than people without diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disorder. If you already have one autoimmune disorder, you are more likely to develop another one.
For people with type 2 diabetes, the risk is lower, but still there. If you have type 2 diabetes, youre more likely to develop a thyroid disease later in life.
Regular testing is recommended to check for thyroid issues. Those with type 1 diabetes may be tested more often immediately after diagnosis and then every year or so than people with type 2 diabetes. There isnt a regular schedule for testing if you have type 2 diabetes, however your healthcare provider may suggest a schedule for testing over time.
If you have diabetes and get a positive thyroid test, there are a few things to you can do to help feel the best possible. These tips include:
- Getting enough sleep.
- Taking all of your medications as directed.
- Getting tested regularly as directed by your healthcare provider.
Signs You Might Have A Thyroid Problem
When your thyroid stops working as it should, you can experience a variety of symptoms that might seem unrelated or even odd. From chills and brain fog to thinning hair and weight gain, if your thyroid isnt functioning well, you may be experiencing symptoms that are subtle and hard to characterize.
Women are more likely to experience issues with their thyroid, but anyone can suffer thyroid problems. Recognizing the symptoms of an overactive or underactive thyroid is the best way to get the treatment you need.
Home Remedies For Hypothyroidism
- Eat a Balanced Natural Diet: A balanced diet is the prerequisite to help with the symptoms of hypothyroidism. An underactive thyroid diet must contain all necessary nutrients that improve total body functions and help combat the symptoms of hypothyroidism. Most importantly, the diet should be natural without processed, canned and preserved foods or ingredients. Hydrogenated oils, white flour and artificial colors and flavors must be eliminated from the diet. Organic food consumption is most advisable. A natural diet with whole grains, vegetables and fruits help boost the immune system and reduce effects of hypothyroidism.
- Avoid Soy:Soy products and soybeans contain goitrogenic compounds that interfere with thyroid hormone levels in the body and make it worse for a person with hypothyroidism. Soy reduces thyroid production and causes hormonal imbalance in the body promoting the formation of goiters. This may aggravate the symptoms of hypothyroidis and cause a higher deficiency in levels of thyroid hormones.
- Balanced Estrogen Levels in Women:Hypothyroidism in women can be due to raised estrogen levels in the body. Higher meat intake, dairy products and birth control pills may imbalance the hormone levels in the body and deplete the production of thyroid hormones. These must be avoided to maintain a healthy hormonal balance in the body.
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Are There Different Types Of Thyroid Removal Surgery
If your healthcare provider determines that your thyroid needs to be removed, there are a couple of ways that can be done. Your thyroid may need to be completely removed or just partially. This will depend on the severity of your condition. Also, if your thyroid is very big or has a lot of growths on it, that could prevent you from being eligible for some types of surgery.
The surgery to remove your thyroid is called a thyroidectomy. There are two main ways this surgery can be done:
- With an incision on the front of your neck.
- With an incision in your armpit.
The incision on the front of your neck is more of the traditional version of a thyroidectomy. It allows your surgeon to go straight in and remove the thyroid. In many cases, this might be your best option. You may need this approach if your thyroid is particularly big or has a lot of larger nodules.
Alternatively, there is a version of the thyroid removal surgery where your surgeon makes an incision in your armpit and then creates a tunnel to your thyroid. This tunnel is made with a special tool called an elevated retractor. It creates an opening that connects the incision in your armpit with your neck. The surgeon will use a robotic arm that will move through the tunnel to get to the thyroid. Once there, it can remove the thyroid back through the tunnel and out of the incision in your armpit.
- Are not at a healthy body weight.
- Have large thyroid nodules.
- Have a condition like thyroiditis or Gravess disease.
What Common Symptoms Can Happen With Thyroid Disease
There are a variety of symptoms you could experience if you have a thyroid disease. Unfortunately, symptoms of a thyroid condition are often very similar to the signs of other medical conditions and stages of life. This can make it difficult to know if your symptoms are related to a thyroid issue or something else entirely.
For the most part, the symptoms of thyroid disease can be divided into two groups those related to having too much thyroid hormone and those related to having too little thyroid hormone .
Symptoms of an overactive thyroid can include:
- Experiencing anxiety, irritability and nervousness.
- Having trouble sleeping.
- Experiencing an intolerance to cold temperatures.
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Signs You May Have A Thyroid Problem
Youve probably heard the word thyroid a number of times if you have ever been to your GP for a check-up, or perhaps even had your thyroid function checked but do you actually know how important the thyroid is, and the problems it can cause if it isnt functioning properly?
The thyroid is a vitally important butterfly-shaped hormonal gland located in the neck that plays a major role in the metabolism, growth and maturation of your body. When your thyroid doesnt function, it can affect every aspect of your health in particular, weight, depression and energy levels.
Undiagnosed thyroid problems can severely increase your risk of obesity, heart disease, depression, anxiety, and hair loss to name but a few. Thats why its important to recognise the signs and symptoms.
Here are 7 of the most common:
1. Feeling depressed or anxiety
Thyroid disorders can have a significant impact on your attitude and temperament. Hypothyroidism tends to make people feel depressed. This is due to the fact that a lack of thyroid hormones decreases the happiness hormone, serotonin, in the brain. Hyperthyroidism is more commonly associated with anxiety, panic attacks, and bipolar disease.
3. Muscle cramps or weakness and joint aches
4. Unexplained weight change
5. Hair and skin changes
6. Neck discomfort
7. Bowel problems
Contact the Randox Health team today to ensure your thyroid is in good health:
Tel: 0800 2545 130
Heavy Or Irregular Periods
Both irregular and heavy menstrual bleeding are linked to hypothyroidism.
One study showed that about 40% of women with low thyroid hormone experienced increasing menstrual irregularity or heavy bleeding in the last year, compared to 26% of women with normal thyroid levels .
In another study, 30% of women with hypothyroidism had irregular and heavy periods. These women had been diagnosed with hypothyroidism after other symptoms had caused them to get tested .
Thyroid hormone interacts with other hormones that control the menstrual cycle, and abnormal levels of it can disrupt their signals. Also, thyroid hormone directly affects the ovaries and uterus.
There are several problems besides hypothyroidism that can cause heavy or irregular periods. If you have irregular or heavy periods that disrupt your lifestyle, consider talking with a gynecologist before worrying about your thyroid.
Summary: Heavy periods or irregular cycles that are worse than usual could be caused by a medical condition, including hypothyroidism. Its best to talk to a gynecologist about them.
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Can I Check My Thyroid At Home
You can do a quick and easy self-exam of your thyroid at home. The only tools you need to do this self-exam are a mirror and a glass of water.
To do the thyroid self-exam, follow these steps:
- Start by identifying where your thyroid is located. Generally, youll find the thyroid on the front of your neck, between your collar bone and Adams apple. In men, the Adams apple is much easier to see. For women, its usually easiest to look from the collar bone up.
- Tip your head back while looking in a mirror. Look at your neck and try to hone in on the space you will be looking once you start the exam.
- Once youre ready, take a drink of water while your head is tilted back. Watch your thyroid as you swallow. During this test, youre looking for lumps or bumps. You may be able to see them when you swallow the water.
Repeat this test a few times to get a good look at your thyroid. If you see any lumps or bumps, reach out to your healthcare provider.
How Is Thyroid Disease Diagnosed
Sometimes, thyroid disease can be difficult to diagnose because the symptoms are easily confused with those of other conditions. You may experience similar symptoms when you are pregnant or aging and you would when developing a thyroid disease. Fortunately, there are tests that can help determine if your symptoms are being caused by a thyroid issue. These tests include:
- Blood tests.
- Physical exams.
One of the most definitive ways to diagnose a thyroid problem is through blood tests. Thyroid blood tests are used to tell if your thyroid gland is functioning properly by measuring the amount of thyroid hormones in your blood. These tests are done by taking blood from a vein in your arm. Thyroid blood tests are used to see if you have:
The specific blood tests that will be done to test your thyroid can include:
These tests alone arent meant to diagnose any illness but may prompt your healthcare provider to do additional testing to evaluate for a possible thyroid disorder.
Additional blood tests might include:
Talk to your healthcare provider about the ranges for these thyroid blood tests. Your ranges might not be the same as someone elses. Thats often alright. If you have any concerns or worries about your blood test results, talk to your provider.
An ultrasound typically takes about 20 to 30 minutes.
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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 . Most thyroid nodules are not cancerous.
For more information about thyroid cancer, visit the National Cancer Institute’s thyroid cancer page.
What Are The Different Types Of Thyroid Disease
Thyroid disease is classified into four categories:
- Graves disease
Although men experience thyroid disease, women are five to eight times more likely to develop problems. Its not a disease just for seniors, either. Women can develop problems during puberty, pregnancy, postpartum, and perimenopause especially due to hormonal shifts.
Cancer of the thyroid is less common. When caught early, however, it is treatable and survival rates are high. There are less than 200,000 cases in the United States each year. The cause of thyroid cancer is not clear, but as with most cancers today, it thought that it might involve a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
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Whos At Risk For Hyperthyroidism
According to the National Institute of Health , hyperthyroidism affects approximately 1.2% of the population in the US. Although it occurs in both men and women, its up to 10 times more likely in females.
Youre at higher risk for hyperthyroidism if you:
- Have a family history of thyroid disease
- Have pernicious anemia
- Have primary adrenal insufficiency, also known as Addisons disease
- Consume an iodine-rich diet or medications containing iodine
- Are over the age of 60
- Were pregnant within the past 6 months
- Had thyroid surgery or a thyroid problem such as a goiter;also known as a swollen thyroid gland;
Though an overactive thyroid brings on a constellation of high thyroid symptoms , some of them dont seem obviously linked to the condition . Heres what to look for.