Signs Your Thyroid is in Trouble, According to Doctors
As Yale-trained endocrinologist who specializes in diabetes, food as medicine and metabolic health, I’ve put together this list of symptoms that could indicate a thyroid problem. That small, butterfly-shaped gland situated at the base of the front of your neck can cause all kinds of issues—and the symptoms may be nonspecific, so it’s important to speak with your doctor if you are experiencing any of the ones you’re about to read about, so that you can be evaluated for all underlying causes. A few blood tests can help determine if you have a thyroid condition or not. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t miss these Sure Signs You Have “Long” COVID and May Not Even Know It.
The Mayo Clinic sums this one up nicely: “Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) is a condition in which your thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough of certain crucial hormones,” they write. “Hypothyroidism may not cause noticeable symptoms in the early stages. Over time, untreated hypothyroidism can cause a number of health problems, such as obesity, joint pain, infertility and heart disease. Accurate thyroid function tests are available to diagnose hypothyroidism. Treatment with synthetic thyroid hormone is usually simple, safe and effective once you and your doctor find the right dose for you.” Here are the symptoms you might feel:
Low thyroid hormone leads to a decrease in overall energy expended by the body, leading one to feel tired.
Thyroid hormone is important for the function of our nerve cells and is important in the functioning of two other important chemicals which manage mood—serotonin and dopamine.
Significantly low levels of thyroid hormone can lead to weight gain due to an increase in water and salt retention.
Low or high thyroid hormone levels can lead to ANY change in menstrual cycles—longer cycles, shorter cycles, cycle irregularity, loss of menses, etc. This is due to thyroid hormone effects on the ovaries, follicles, and endometrium of the uterus.
Low thyroid hormone leads to a decrease in cardiac output that leads to an overall decrease in heart rate.
Low thyroid hormone leads to decreased gut motility which results in constipation.
Low thyroid hormone may lead to a decreased blood flow to the skin which can lead to the skin feeling cold and dry.
The thyroid hormone plays an essential role in the development and maintenance of the hair follicles which can lead to decreased hair growth or hair loss.
Not to be confused with Hypothyroidism, Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid) “occurs when your thyroid gland produces too much of the hormone thyroxine,” says the Mayo Clinic. “Hyperthyroidism can accelerate your body’s metabolism, causing unintentional weight loss and a rapid or irregular heartbeat. Several treatments are available for hyperthyroidism. Doctors use anti-thyroid medications and radioactive iodine to slow the production of thyroid hormones. Sometimes, hyperthyroidism treatment involves surgery to remove all or part of your thyroid gland. Although hyperthyroidism can be serious if you ignore it, most people respond well once hyperthyroidism is diagnosed and treated.” Read on for the symptoms.
Thyroid hormone is important for the function of our nerve cells and is important in the functioning of 2 other important chemicals which manage mood – serotonin and dopamine. Too much thyroid hormone may lead to an increase in both serotonin and dopamine.
High levels of thyroid hormone also leads to an increase of hormones called catecholamines which are important for our “fight or flight response” leading to increased alertness and difficulty w sleeping. Some components of difficulty with sleep may also be related to heightened anxiety.
High levels of thyroid hormone leads to an increase in cardiac output that leads to an overall increase in heart rate. High levels of thyroid hormone also leads to an increase of hormones called catecholamines which are important for our “fight or flight response” leading to increased heart rate.
Those with hyperthyroidism feel very warm at baseline due to increased blood flow throughout the body.
Low or high thyroid hormone levels can lead to ANY change in menstrual cycles—longer cycles, shorter cycles, cycle irregularity, loss of menses, etc. This is due to thyroid hormone effects on the ovaries, follicles, and endometrium of the uterus. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, contact a medical professional to discuss your case. And to get through life at your healthiest, don’t miss these 13 Everyday Habits That Are Secretly Killing You.
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