The Trouble with Hypothyroidism
We all have cells and organs in our bodies that work to keep us alive and healthy. The thyroid, for example, is a butterfly-shaped gland situated in the neck is responsible for the quality of our voice. Most importantly, it is the powerhouse that secreted two hormones: triiodothyronine (T3) and Thyroxine (T4).
Both have a role in muscular activity, growth and brain development during childhood, metabolism (BMR), heart and digestive function, bone maintenance, and heart rate, but are most noted for their role in metabolism, namely basal metabolic rate. When someone is diagnosed with hypothyroidism, it means the thyroid gland is unusually underactive and cannot produce the thyroid hormones that is needed to be distributed throughout the body. Due to a deficiency of thyroid hormones in the bloodstream, the body is not able perform its vital roles.
Is it Purely Hereditary or Can Anyone Develop it?
According to EndocrineWeb, nearly 10 million people in the US suffer from this condition, and 10% of women , possess a level of thyroid hormone deficiency. If a person in your family has the condition, as with many other disorders, it is likely you will fall subject to it as well or have another thyroid-related issue. The chances of getting it seem to increase for those who have rheumatoid arthritis, Addison's disease and type 1 diabetes.
The thyroid glands run on iodine, and its lack or absence is a common could people get it, although getting enough iodine in the diet is normally not a problem for people in the US. Sometimes, there is nothing wrong with the thyroid itself; it is the pituitary gland that fails to make enough TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) to signal the thyroid glands to produce the hormone. Another cause is due to chronic inflammation of the thyroid leaving a portion of the area damaged and incapable of producing enough hormones to the body. Hashimoto's thyroiditis (autoimmune thyroiditis) is a common cause of thyroid gland failure. Medicinal treatments for another disease or cancer is also known to increase the chances of someone getting it.
What Are the Typical Symptoms?
It is more common that most would expect; millions of people have the condition, but are not aware they have hypothyroidism. It is often tied to the belief that if you are having trouble losing weight even when you are trying to drop the pounds or gain it too easily, it is due to hypothyroidism. In some sense, it is true because the metabolism slows down for anyone.
- Weight Gain/Trouble Losing Weight
- Dry Skin
- Lowered Heart Rate
- Intolerance to Cold
- Low Libido
- Impaired fertility
- Heavy or abnormal menstrual periods
- Rough, Dry Skin
- Muscle Aches and Cramps
- Memory Loss
Options Available For Those Who Have It
Although iodine is important to have in the diet, those with the autoimmune disease are likely to have adverse effects taking if you take iodine drops or eat foods rich in it such as kelp or seaweed. Healthcare providers will administer a synthetic form of thyroxine to those who suffer from it depending on their weight, age, and how advanced the problem is. TSH levels are often monitored every month or so to ensure optimal dosage. It is crucial to get the proper dosage because severe complications can occur if too much or too little is taken. For others, surgery around the area is a better idea to treat it due to cancer of the thyroid. If it is severe enough(a mass of dead cells or inability to function),a portion of the thyroid or nodule will be removed.