Hypothyroidism : Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

Hypothyroidism, also called low thyroid or underactive thyroid, is defined as a disease of endocrine system in which thyroid gland, located in the front lower part of the neck doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormone to meet the requirement of the body.

These hormones travel through the bloodstream and affect nearly every part of the body.

Hypothyroidism leads to the impairment of the body metabolism and so resulting in a host of the body, as hypothyroid is accountable for largely the metabolism functions of the body.

Metabolism affects heartbeat, body’s temperature and how well you burn your calories. If body doesn’t have enough thyroid hormone, the body processes go steady.

Symptoms of Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism symptoms include:

  • Dry skin and hair
  • Hair Loss
  • Brittle nails
  • Constipation
  • Depression or confused thinking
  • Fatigue
  • Bad memory
  • Greater sensitivity to cold
  • Slower heart rate
  • Feeling of tiredness
  • Joint stiffness
  • Swelling of the thyroid gland
  • Changes in the menstrual cycle
  • Unexplained weight gain

Hypothyroidism Risk Factors

It tends to affect women over age of 35 years or more. Older women are more likely to develop this disease than men. But, it can occur at any age. Some risk factors of hypothyroidism may include:

  • Growing older
  • Premature graying hair
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Down syndrome
  • Turner syndrome
  • Autoimmune disorders i.e. type-1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, pernicious anemia, etc.

Diagnosis of Hypothyroidism

Doctors usually test blood samples to check hormone levels. The most common blood test is thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) test, which detects the amounts of thyroid stimulating harmone in the bloodstream.

If the reading of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) is above than normal levels, then patient may have hypothyroidism.

But, if thyroid stimulating hormones are below than normal levels, then the patient may have hyperthyroidism.

In addition, some other blood tests are also used to confirm the diagnosis or determine its causes such as; T3, T4, or thyroid autoantibody test.

Treatment of Hypothyroidism

While you’re able to follow your own treatment by adhering to strict diet and dietary principles like by restricting your fat and carb intake, preventing non organic meat and fluorides and adhering to an alkaline and natural diet, nevertheless you have to take certain medicines to help cope with the problem of hypothyroidism.

Among the vast selection of thyroid supplements currently available like levothryoxine, synthroid, thyroid armour etc.

It is always a wise idea to decide on a thyroid supplement. Armour thyroid is a pure thyroid supplement derived from their desiccated pig’s bodily hormone and is needed to provide the essential thyroid hormones T3 and T4 as they happen naturally within the human body to make up for their loss or deficiency.

Salt iodization may be helpful to treat hypothyroidism.

Can Armour Thyroid and Pills for Birth Control Be Taken Together?

While you may take thyroid armour and pills for birth control together without having to worry about some severe toxicity, the use of the latter together with the former might reduction the former’s effectiveness, so it’s always advisable to not take pills for birth control while taking thyroid or consult your physician for his opinion.

Armour thyroid stays in the bloodstream for approximately 7 days, that makes this drug always advisable.

Complications of Hypothyroidism

Treatment of hypothyroidism is necessary because untreated hypothyroidism may cause:

Hypothyroidism and Pregnancy

During pregnancy women need additional intake of thyroid hormone due to increased demands on metabolism.

According to a study, about 85 percent pregnant women who are taking thyroid hormone replacement needed an additional average requirement of 47% during the pregnancy.

Hypothyroidism and Pregnancy

Increased hypothyroidism may have the risk of preterm delivery, miscarriage, an increased blood pressure or it can affect developing babies.
It can also affect brain & mental development and growth rates.

Its because, baby receives all thyroid hormone from its mother during the first 3 months of pregnancy. If mother herself has hypothyroidism, baby doesn’t get enough thyroid hormone.

If the patient has extremely low levels of thyroid hormone, it can cause a life-threatening condition, known as myxedema.

It is the most severe form of hypothyroidism. A person with myxedema may lose his/her consciousness or go into a coma.

Final Words

In hypothyroidism, hypothyroid is known to make insufficient quantity of thyroid hormones needed for the operation of the hypothyroid.

Hypothyroidism is among the most painful conditions of the body, which leads to thyroid symptoms such as; dry skin, brittle nails, joint stiffness, continuous fatigue, depression, confused thinking, bad memory, weight gain and loss of hair in these people suffering from this condition.

If you have any above mentioned symptoms, you need to call your doctor right away.

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