Tiredness? Weight gain? Could it be thyroid?
Does fatigue affect you day after day? Do you feel brain fog, unexplained weight gain, chills, or hair loss? Or do you experience the opposite: You often revved up, sweaty without reason, or anxious without explanation? Your thyroid gland could be the reason for all the unpleasantness. This great regulator of body and mind often cause all range of symptoms, particularly in women. Getting the fast and appropriate treatment is important to feel better and avoid serious complications.
The thyroid is a hormonal gland in the front of your neck. It produces hormones that control your metabolism. Thyroid problems can slow down or increase metabolism by changing the production of thyroid hormones.
An unexplained change in weight is one of the most common symptoms of a thyroid disorder. Weight gain means low levels of thyroid hormones, a condition called hypothyroidism. Opposite, if the thyroid produces much more hormones than the body needs, you may lose weight without reason. This is a Hypothyroidism, which is far more common.
An enlargement in the neck is a valuable clue that something may be wrong with the thyroid. A goitre may happen with either hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism. Sometimes swelling in the neck can result from thyroid cancer or nodules, lumps that grow inside the thyroid. It can also be due to a cause unrelated to the thyroid.
Thyroid hormones influence nearly every organ in the body and can regulate how quickly the heart beats. People with hypothyroidism notice their heart rate is slower than usual. Hyperthyroidism may cause the heart to rev up. It can also trigger the sensation of a pounding heart or other types of heart palpitations.
Thyroid disorders can have a noticeable impact on your energy level and mood. Hypothyroidism tends to make people feel tired, sluggish, and depressed. Hyperthyroidism can cause anxiety, problems sleeping, restlessness, and irritability.
Hair loss is another sign that thyroid hormones may be out of balance. Both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism can cause hair to fall out. In most cases, the hair will grow back once the thyroid disorder is treated.
Thyroid disorders can affect the ability to regulate body temperature. People with hypothyroidism feel cold more often than usual. Hyperthyroidism tends to have the opposite effect, causing excessive sweating and an intolerance to heat.
Hypothyroidism can cause many symptoms, including:
- Dry skin and brittle nails
- Numbness or tingling in the hands
- Constipation when it has never been noticed before
- Unusual menstrual periods
Hyperthyroidism can also cause other symptoms, such as:
- Muscle weakness or shaky hands
- Eye problems
- Change in menstrual periods
Thyroid disorders may cause changes in menstrual cycle and mood, that is why the symptoms are sometimes mistaken for menopause.
Who Should Be Tested?
If you think you have symptoms of a thyroid problem, book an appointment with your doctor to be tested. Hypothyroidism is more frequently observed in women over age 60. However, every gae and gender may be affected equally.