The Basics of Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is the condition in which a person has an underactive thyroid gland. This means that the thyroid gland is weak and is not able to produce enough amounts of thyroid hormones to keep the body at an optimal state. There is no cure for hypothyroidism and most people affected have it for their entire lives. However, it can be controlled and treated continuously so as not to derail a patient’s daily living.

 

EndocrineWeb founder James Norman MD, FACS, FACE wrote about this condition and has shared that there is approximately ten (10) million Americans affected by hypothyroidism, which makes it more common that we think it is. Women are statistically perceived to be more prone to hypothyroidism and other autoimmune diseases as 10% of women may have some form of thyroid hormone deficiency.

 

Symptoms of Hypothyroidism

People affected by hypothyroidism usually do not even know they have it until they feel extreme pains brought about by its symptoms. Mayo Clinic has shared that symptoms may vary and tend to develop slowly over a span of a couple of years. Fatigue, weight gain, muscle weakness, elevated blood cholesterol, joint pains, and slowed heart rate are just some of the more common symptoms of hypothyroidism. You may notice that these are also present in most other diseases, which only shows how difficult it could be to diagnose such a condition.

 

Kinds of Hypothyroidism

Here are three kinds, also considered causes, of hypothyroidism according to The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases:

 

 

 

 

Hypothyroidism can also develop as an effect of hyperthyroidism treatment or if a part or the entirety of the thyroid gland is removed. Nevertheless, it can also be controlled through hormone therapy, usually with the synthetic thyroxine. Proper diet and a healthy lifestyle coupled with dietary supplements recommended by a health professional can help alleviate any pains of hypothyroidism. These are a patient’s best options for this otherwise enduring disease.

Citations and References:

  1. Norman, J. (Updated 2018 July 06). Hypothyroidism: Overview, Causes, and Symptoms. Retrieved from https://www.endocrineweb.com/conditions/thyroid/hypothyroidism-too-little-thyroid-hormone
  2. The Mayo Clinic. Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hypothyroidism/symptoms-causes/syc-20350284
  3. National Endocrine and Metabolic Diseases Information Service. (2013 March). Hypothyroidism. Retrieved from https://www.niddk.nih.gov/-/media/Files/Endocrine-Diseases/Hypothyroidism_508.pdf?la=en
  4. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. (2016 August). Hypothyroidism (Underactive Thyroid). Retrieved from https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/endocrine-diseases/hypothyroidism

 

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