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How To Tell If You Have A Thyroid Problem

Common Problems: Hypothyroidism And Hyperthyroidism

How to know if you have a thyroid problem

More than one in 10 people will develop a thyroid problem in their lifetime, estimates the American Thyroid Association . Many of these problems can lead to either hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.

The more common of the two, hypothyroidism, happens when the thyroid makes too little hormone. This underproduction can slow down body functions like digestion and metabolism, leading to symptoms such as tiredness, weight gain and constipation. Up to 3.7% of people in the United States have hypothyroidism.

When the thyroid makes too much hormone, it’s known as hyperthyroidism. This overproduction can speed up your body’s functions, leading to symptoms like restlessness, weight loss and diarrhea. Just 0.8% of people in the United States have hyperthyroidism.

Though the two conditions can cause opposite symptoms, hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism share something in common: They are each the result of an underlying problem, usually an autoimmune disorder. For example, the autoimmune condition Hashimoto’s disease can cause hypothyroidism, while Grave’s disease can lead to hyperthyroidism. If you have a thyroid problem, your healthcare provider will be able to help you determine the underlying cause.

Other causes include too much iodine or thyroid nodules and prior thyroid treatments . Thyroiditis, which is when the thyroid becomes inflamed, can also cause hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.

Is It Menopause Or Thyroid Disorder

Thyroid disorders can cause symptoms that are mistaken for those of a woman approaching menopause. Both menstrual cycle changes and mood changes can result from the menopausal transition or from thyroid conditions. Blood tests can determine which of these conditions is responsible for your symptoms. It’s also possible to have a combination of the two causes.

Thyroid Disease: Easy To Miss

Although a simple blood test is all that’s needed to find out if you have thyroid disease, up to 60 percent of people go undiagnosed, according to the American Thyroid Association. Because symptoms of a thyroid condition are wide-ranging and vague, they’re often mistaken for signs of aging or stress.

The thyroid plays a crucial role in metabolism and the functioning of the brain, heart and other vital organs so having a thyroid problem affects how you function daily. Learn how to spot the signs of thyroid disease.

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Have Your Eating Habits Changed

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Loss of appetite, as well as greater appetite because of an overperforming thyroid, is a common symptom, according to the American Thyroid Association. It is normal to be hungry after working out, but feeling like you are never full and if that happens every day for several weeks may be a sign of diabetes or thyroid abnormalities.

How Is Postpartum Thyroiditis Treated

301 Moved Permanently

Treatment for postpartum thyroiditis depends on the phase of the disease and what symptoms you have. For example, if you get symptoms of hyperthyroidism in the first phase, your treatment may include medicines to slow down the heart rate.

In most women who have postpartum thyroiditis, the thyroid returns to normal within 12 to 18 months after symptoms start. But if you have a history of postpartum thyroiditis, your risk is higher for developing permanent hypothyroidism within 5 to 10 years.5

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If Part Of My Thyroid Is Surgically Removed Will The Other Part Be Able To Make Enough Thyroid Hormones To Keep Me Off Of Medication

Sometimes, your surgeon may be able to remove part of your thyroid and leave the other part so that it can continue to create and release thyroid hormones. This is most likely in situations where you have a nodule thats causing your thyroid problem. About 75% of people who have only one side of the thyroid removed are able to make enough thyroid hormone after surgery without hormone replacement therapy.

Knowing When To Check Your Thyroid

  • 1Monitor for symptoms of hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism is the condition where you have an underactive thyroid. All forms of hypothyroidism can be caused by viral infections, radiation damage, some medications, pregnancy, and other rarer causes. Symptoms of an underactive thyroid include:XResearch sourceXTrustworthy SourceMayo ClinicEducational website from one of the world’s leading hospitalsGo to source
  • Severe and constant fatigue
  • Changes in the menstrual cycle
  • Constipation
  • Disturbed sleep cycle, such as wanting to sleep all the time
  • Intolerance to cold
  • Muscle weakness
  • Unexplained weight gain or difficulty losing weight
  • 2Watch for symptoms of hyperthyroidism. Hyperthyroidism is the condition where you have an overactive thyroid. This condition can be a result of Graves disease, tumors, thyroiditis , thyroid nodules, and some medications.XResearch source Symptoms of an overactive thyroid include:XResearch source
  • Rapid heart rate or palpitations
  • Increased respiratory rate
  • Frequent and loose bowel movements or diarrhea
  • Fine hair that may be falling out
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Nervousness, irritability, a feeling of high energy
  • Anxiety or panic attacks
  • Reddish skin which may be itchy
  • 3Understand the symptoms may be due to another condition. Remember that many of these symptoms are not specific to thyroid disease. Determine if you have multiple symptoms, or just a few. If you are unsure, go to your physician for tests.XResearch sourceXResearch source
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    Did You Suddenly Gain Or Lose Weight

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    One of the most common signs of a thyroid not working right is gained weight, especially among ???. An underactive thyroid can significantly slow down your metabolism. Having trouble losing a few pounds can also be a sign of hypothyroidism. The other extreme is losing weight fast. This may be due to an overactive thyroid gland.

    How Is Thyroid Cancer Treated

    How Do You Know If You Have a Thyroid Problem?

    The main treatment for thyroid cancer is surgery to take out the whole thyroid gland or as much of it as can be safely removed. Surgery alone can cure thyroid cancer if the cancer is small and has not yet spread to lymph nodes.

    Your doctor may also use radioiodine therapy after surgery. Radioiodine therapy destroys any thyroid cancer cells that were not removed during surgery or that have spread to other parts of the body.

    Your doctor may also talk with you about other treatments for thyroid cancer. Learn more about thyroid cancer treatments at the National Cancer Institute.

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    Of : Knowing When To Check Your Thyroid

  • 1Monitor for symptoms of hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism is the condition where you have an underactive thyroid. All forms of hypothyroidism can be caused by viral infections, radiation damage, some medications, pregnancy, and other rarer causes. Symptoms of an underactive thyroid include:XResearch sourceXTrustworthy SourceMayo ClinicEducational website from one of the worlds leading hospitalsGo to source
  • Severe and constant fatigue
  • Changes in the menstrual cycle
  • Constipation
  • Disturbed sleep cycle, such as wanting to sleep all the time
  • Intolerance to cold
  • Muscle weakness
  • Unexplained weight gain or difficulty losing weight
  • 2Watch for symptoms of hyperthyroidism. Hyperthyroidism is the condition where you have an overactive thyroid. This condition can be a result of Graves disease, tumors, thyroiditis , thyroid nodules, and some medications.XResearch source Symptoms of an overactive thyroid include:XResearch source
  • Rapid heart rate or palpitations
  • Increased respiratory rate
  • Frequent and loose bowel movements or diarrhea
  • Fine hair that may be falling out
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Nervousness, irritability, a feeling of high energy
  • Anxiety or panic attacks
  • Sweatiness
  • Reddish skin which may be itchy
  • 3Understand the symptoms may be due to another condition. Remember that many of these symptoms are not specific to thyroid disease. Determine if you have multiple symptoms, or just a few. If you are unsure, go to your physician for tests.XResearch sourceXResearch source
  • Symptoms Of Thyroid Problems

    The symptoms of low thyroid are many. According to author and thyroid expert Dana Trentini, there are 300+ symptoms of thyroid disorder! Ill list some of the common ones here:

    • Cold hands and feet

    Symptoms of hyperthyroidism swing the other way and include:

    • Excess hunger

    • Rapid heartbeat

    • High blood pressure

    Many of these symptoms could overlap with other health conditions. And many people who have a thyroid condition also have another health challenge. Lets look at the roots and triggers for thyroid disease and learn how it develops.

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    Signs Of Thyroid Trouble

    Untreated thyroid disorders can lead to serious health complications

    The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists estimates that 30 million Americans have some kind of thyroid disorder. Thats a surprising number but even more startling is that up to 50 percent of people with thyroid disease arent even aware that they have it.

    Its common for people to chalk up some thyroid symptoms fatigue, irritability, sleep problems to general life stress, says Tiffany Hor, MD, an endocrinologist at Rush.

    Such nonspecific symptoms are often easy to ignore, but the consequences of postponing diagnosis and treatment can be serious: Over the long term, untreated thyroid issues can lead to health complications ranging from an increased risk of osteoporosis to cardiovascular issues.

    Are There Different Types Of Thyroid Removal Surgery

    Thyroid Care  Treatment, Care and Future Trends  Witan World

    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.

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    If An Underactive Thyroid Isn’t Treated

    It’s unlikely that you’d have many of the later symptoms of an underactive thyroid, because the condition is often identified before more serious symptoms appear.

    Later symptoms of an underactive thyroid include:

    • a low-pitched and hoarse voice
    • a puffy-looking face
    • thinned or partly missing eyebrows
    • a slow heart rate
    • anaemia

    Do You Have Trouble Remembering Things

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    The thyroid affects every cell in the body, those in the brain included. Studies show that an underactive thyroid can take a substantial toll on your mental health. Thyroid hormone deficiency slows everything down, including neurological functions. Then, like in a domino effect, you cant concentrate, feel confused, and have short-term memory loss.

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    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.

    Common Signs And Symptoms Of A Thyroid Problem

    Thyroid Problems- How Do You Know If You Have A Thyroid Problem?

    Your thyroid is the size of a butterfly-shaped lemon, but even though it’s small, it’s mighty. The thyroid gland makes hormones that support many bodily functions, such as breathing, pumping blood and burning calories. Most of the time, the thyroid does what it’s supposed to do, but sometimes a problem can cause it to produce too little or too much hormone. Depending on the underlying issue, this can lead to a range of symptoms, like fatigue, anxiety and weight changes.

    If you’re wondering how to know whether you have a thyroid problem, it’s important to note that only a healthcare provider can give you an actual diagnosis, which will require tests and a clinical exam. However, your body will likely send you a few clues. Here are 21 common signs and symptoms of a thyroid problem to watch out for.

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    If You Have A Symptom Of Hypothyroidism Should You Be Worried

    The most common hypothyroid symptoms are fatigue, cold intolerance, constipation, slower metabolism, and dry skin, while more surprising signs may be a slower heart rate, joint and muscle pain, and dry or puffy skin, says Gregory Dodell, MD, assistant clinical professor of medicine, endocrinology, diabetes, and bone disease at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City. Some people might experience one symptom but not the others.

    Another possibility is having multiple symptoms with different causes. For instance, fatigue could be related to a mental health condition, while a slower heart rate may be hypothyroid related.

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    Who Is At Risk Of Developing Thyroid Problems

    Women and people over 60 years of age have a higher risk of developing either hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism. If you’ve been pregnant or had a baby within the past six months, you also face a higher risk.

    Personal or family history risk factors can also play a role, including:

    • Prior thyroid problems, such as a goiter or a family history of them
    • Prior thyroid surgery or radiation treatments to the neck or chest
    • Anemia, type 1 diabetes, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, Turner’s syndrome or Sjogren’s syndrome
    • Consuming high-iodine foods, medications or supplements

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    Weak Nails And Thinning Hair

    Your hair and nails are constantly growing. One important function of the thyroid gland is sending hormone signals to trigger hair and nail growth. With hyperthyroidism, the extra hormones tell your body to increase the growth of your hair follicles and nails in a shorter period of time. While it would seem that your nails growing fast would be a positive side effect of thyroid dysfunction, that isnt the case. This forced growth is too fast. As a result, your body has to stretch its natural resources, which can lead to thin and brittle hair and nails.

    How Does Your Hair Look

    How to Know If You Have a Thyroid Problem  7 Major Signs

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    Hair loss is not among the most common symptoms, according to the British Thyroid Foundation, but its a possibility. Both hypo- and hyperthyroidism can be the cause. Dont worry the hair will most likely grow back once the condition is treated. Hair loss may also be a symptom of iron deficiency.

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    Does Your Skin Look Different

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    It can be itchy and dry if your thyroid is underperforming. This has to do with skin turnover, Prudence Hall, MD, from The Hall Center, says. It slows down which means there are older cells still on the skin. You may find your nails very breakable all of a sudden. Insufficient thyroid hormone slows down metabolism, which reduces sweating. The dryness can be extreme, this may cause no sweating and the palms and soles to get thick and dry.

    Are You Eating Gluten

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    Gluten is an enemy of the thyroid gland. One of the first things doctors do in treating it is getting the patient off gluten. This is because when the body cant tolerate gluten, it creates antibodies to attack it. As they circulate in the blood, the antibodies get to the thyroid and cross-react, attacking the gland itself.

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    Tsh Thyroid Stimulating Hormone

    TSH is the hormone that tells your thyroid to make more thyroid hormone. Heres how it works.

    Your hypothalamus is like the thermostat for thyroid hormone it keeps watch on how much thyroid hormone is in your bloodstream, and it responds when you need more. When your level drops too low, it releases TRH, thyroid releasing hormone. Your pituitary gland picks up on TRH, and it releases TSH in response.

    Does it test thyroid function? Well, yes, but only if your hypothalamus and pituitary are doing their thing. The stops on the signaling pathway can get messed up for various reasons. Any problems with detecting hormone or releasing hormone at any point in the cascade, and the TSH test becomes worthless.

    TSH Optimal range: 0.5-2 IU/L

    High TSHHigh TSH indicates youre hypothyroid. Since its a signaling hormone, high TSH indicates that your body detects low hormone, so its turning up the volume on the signal to make more. If your thyroid isnt or cannot respond because its compromised in some way, youll produce more and more TSH. This number can really go off the charts, depending on how low you are and how long youve been hypothyroid.

    Low TSHLow TSH tells you that you have too much thyroid hormone, or that you can cut your dose of thyroid medication, so it indicates hyperthyroid. Certain thyroid medications can suppress your TSH, so if you dont have symptoms youre still in good shape.

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