Wednesday, February 28, 2024

How Can Thyroid Problems Affect You

Headaches And Thyroid Function

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A recent study published in Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain found that thyroid and Migraines had a strong connection with 21% of people who suffered a pre-existing headache condition were more likely to develop hypothyroidism. For migraine sufferers, that number jumps to 41%.

This isnt surprising considering past research has shown that people who suffered from migraines in early childhood often developed hypothyroidism as an adult. Research has also shown that once hypothyroidism has developed, migraines and headaches become more frequent and severe.

Furthermore, other studies have found that as hypothyroidism increases in severity, it may result in even more frequent headaches.

If youre one of the millions of people suffering from migraines, your immediate question may be: Can the thyroid cause headaches? While this research shows a strong link between the two conditions, there is no definitive answer as to why they are linked or if one condition causes the other.

One of the most notable questions on the topic is: Are people who suffer from migraines are more likely to have thyroid problems, or is it that those people who have thyroid issues are more susceptible to migraines?

It is the hope of medical professionals, researchers, and migraine sufferers alike that present and future studies will answer that question, and help develop additional protocols and treatments for those affected.

What Are The Symptoms Of Thyroid Eye Disease

If you have Graves disease, eye symptoms most often begin within six months of disease diagnosis. Very rarely, eye problems may develop long after the Graves disease has been treated. In some patients with eye symptoms, hyperthyroidism never develops and, rarely, patients may have hypothyroidism. The severity of the eye symptoms is not related to the severity of the hyperthyroidism.

Symptoms of thyroid eye disease are caused by the tissues, fat, and muscles of the eye socket swelling and pushing the eyeball forward. It may be possible that symptoms may appear in one eye more than the other. The symptoms of thyroid eye disease include:

Dry, gritty and irritated eyes

Red eyes

Bulging eyes and lid retraction giving a staring or startled appearance

In more advanced thyroid eye disease, there may also be:

  • Trouble moving eyes and closing eyes
  • Inability to completely close your eye causing a corneal ulcer
  • Colors appear to be dull or not as bright
  • Blurred or loss of vision due to optic nerve compression or corneal damage

Double vision

Does Celiac Cause Other Autoimmune Diseases

There is a lot of debate over whether celiac disease causes other autoimmune diseases, but one thing is for sure: celiac patients have a higher risk of developing autoimmune conditions. This is likely because the condition affects the small intestine, which is where grains and other food products go to be absorbed and processed.

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How Are Thyroid Problems Prevented And Treated

If your cancer treatment could affect your thyroid gland, your doctor will check your thyroid hormone levels before treatment begins. You may be able to take medicine before some cancer treatments to help prevent thyroid problems.

Treatment for your thyroid problems depends on if you have an overactive or underactive thyroid. You may need to talk with an endocrinologist, which is a doctor who specializes in treating problems with hormones, glands, and the endocrine system.

Underactive thyroid . The treatment for an underactive thyroid is artificial thyroid hormone medication, given as a pill you swallow. You take the pill at the same time every day. Usually, you will need to take this pill daily for the rest of your life.

Sometimes, low thyroid function after radiation therapy can get better. If so, you would stop taking medicine when your thyroid gland starts to work well again.

Overactive thyroid . Treatment for high thyroid levels includes medication. If you have a non-cancerous nodule on your thyroid or thyroid cancer, treatment options include surgery or radioactive iodine treatment. Treatment destroys thyroid tissue so it cannot produce hormones.

How Your Thyroid Affects Your Periods

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Your thyroid produces hormones chemical messengers that travel throughout your body and deliver critical instructions that ensure your body functions properly. Too many or too few thyroid hormones confuse the system and throw other hormones out of whack as well, including your reproductive hormones, which can easily affect your menstrual cycle.

Hypothyroidism underproduction of thyroid hormones can lead to:

Heres a closer look at the specific relationship between your thyroid and your periods.

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Tip : Consider A Selenium Supplement

Selenium is a trace mineral your body requires to activate thyroid hormone. Studies have linked low selenium levels with increased risks for chronic autoimmune thyroiditis, Graves disease, and goiter.

You can increase your selenium levels by increasing your intake of meat, seafood, or whole grains. But some people may require a supplement to enhance selenium levels. Talk with your doctor about what may help.

Consider scheduling an appointment with your doctor if you experience the following symptoms as they could be related to your thyroid:

  • feeling a nodule or lump on either side of your larynx
  • experiencing weight loss or gain that you cant explain by changes in diet or activity level
  • constantly feeling very hot or very cold
  • experiencing mood changes, such as depression, anxiety, or nervousness
  • feeling a sense of significant fatigue

These symptoms can all indicate a potential thyroid concern and warrant a trip to your doctor.

There are two thyroid-related conditions that can be medical emergencies: myxedema coma and thyroid storm. You should seek emergency medical attention for either.

Radiation Treatment Of The Thyroid

Radioactive iodine, a common treatment for hyperthyroidism, gradually destroys thyroid cells. If you receive radioactive iodine treatment, you probably will eventually develop hypothyroidism. Doctors also treat people who have head or neck cancers with external radiation therapy, which can also damage the thyroid if it is included in the treatment.

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What Is Thyroid Disease

Thyroid disease is a general term for a medical condition that keeps your thyroid from making the right amount of hormones. Your thyroid typically makes hormones that keep your body functioning normally. When the thyroid makes too much thyroid hormone, your body uses energy too quickly. This is called hyperthyroidism. Using energy too quickly will do more than make you tired it can make your heart beat faster, cause you to lose weight without trying and even make you feel nervous. On the flip-side of this, your thyroid can make too little thyroid hormone. This is called hypothyroidism. When you have too little thyroid hormone in your body, it can make you feel tired, you might gain weight and you may even be unable to tolerate cold temperatures.

These two main disorders can be caused by a variety of conditions. They can also be passed down through families .

Thyroid Medication And Treatment For Breathing Problems

Can my thyroid affect my vision?

Fortunately, many of the breathing symptoms caused by thyroid problems go away with treatment and medication. Hormone replacement, through medication like levothyroxine, can make living with thyroid problems much easier.

Often, breathing problems are amongst the first signs that you have thyroid problems. Its not unusual for patients to feel out-of-breath without exertion, experience breathless fatigue, or experience a dry cough or hoarse voice. Most thyroid problems can be picked up with a simple blood test. If you are concerned that your breathing problems could be a sign of thyroid problems, do arrange for blood tests and a review with your doctor.

If you have been diagnosed with a thyroid problem and put on thyroid medication, ensure you take the medication regularly and according to your doctors advice as this will help get rid of thyroid-related breathing problems and other unwanted symptoms.

We make every effort to provide you with clear and informative health information at International Pharmacy. We endeavor to ensure the advice is accurate and up to date. However, this information is not personalized and should not be used in place of advice from your own medical professional. If you are concerned about your health, including your thyroid function, do seek your own medical support and advice.

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What Are The Complications Of Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism can contribute to high cholesterol. If you have high cholesterol, you should get tested for hypothyroidism. Rarely, severe untreated hypothyroidism may lead to myxedema coma, an extreme form of hypothyroidism in which the bodys functions slow to a life-threatening point. Myxedema coma requires immediate medical treatment.

How Is Thyroid Cancer Diagnosed

If you have an enlarged thyroid nodule or other signs of thyroid cancer, your healthcare provider may order one or more of these tests:

  • Blood tests: A thyroid blood test checks hormone levels and gauges whether your thyroid is functioning properly.
  • Biopsy: During a fine-needle aspiration biopsy, your healthcare provider removes cells from your thyroid to test for cancer cells. A sentinel node biopsy can determine if cancer cells have spread to lymph nodes. Your provider may use ultrasound technology to guide these biopsy procedures.
  • Radioiodine scan: This test can detect thyroid cancer and determine if cancer has spread. You swallow a pill containing a safe amount of radioactive iodine . Over a few hours, the thyroid gland absorbs the iodine. Your healthcare provider uses a special device to measure the amount of radiation in the gland. Areas with less radioactivity need more testing to confirm the presence of cancer.
  • Imaging scans:Magnetic resonance imaging , computed tomography and positron emission tomography scans can detect thyroid cancer and cancer spread.

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How Can I Find Support

Because thyroid eye disease can change your vision and appearance, it can have a big effect on your life. Its important to get support along with your treatment. You might start by talking to family and friends about what youâre going through.

Depression is common in people with thyroid eye disease. If you feel like youâre struggling, talk to your doctor. They can put you in touch with a mental health professional who can help.

Graves disease support groups are another place to turn. Youll meet other people with thyroid eye disease who may have advice to help you manage your condition. You can find a support group through an organization like the Graves Disease & Thyroid Foundation.

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What Type Of Thyroid Problems Are There

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The main types of thyroid problems are:

  • Hyperthyroidism is when the thyroid is overactive and makes too much thyroid hormone. The most common symptoms of hyperthyroidism are feeling anxious or nervous, being unable to tolerate heat, having heart palpitations, feeling tired and losing weight, even if youre eating the same amount of food. Hyperthyroidism is sometimes called thyrotoxicosis.
  • Hypothyroidism this is when the thyroid is underactive and does not make enough thyroid hormone. Hypothyroidism can go on for years without showing any signs. When symptoms do appear, they can be quite varied and can include fatigue, being unable to tolerate the cold, constipation, dry skin, weight gain, poor memory and depression.
  • Thyroid cancer this is when some of the thyroid cells become cancerous. Thyroid cancer is more common in women than in men and is usually diagnosed in peoples fifties. It can usually be treated successfully.

Other thyroid problems include nodules that grow in the thyroid, an inflamed thyroid, and an enlarged thyroid . These conditions may lead to either hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism.

Because the thyroid gland plays an important role in controlling many of the bodys functions, serious health problems can result when it is not functioning as it should. If you think you may have a thyroid problem, its important to see your doctor.

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Who Is Affected By Thyroid Disease

Thyroid disease can affect anyone men, women, infants, teenagers and the elderly. It can be present at birth and it can develop as you age .

Thyroid disease is very common, with an estimated 20 million people in the Unites States having some type of thyroid disorder. A woman is about five to eight times more likely to be diagnosed with a thyroid condition than a man.

You may be at a higher risk of developing a thyroid disease if you:

  • Have a family history of thyroid disease.
  • Have a medical condition .
  • Take a medication thats high in iodine .
  • Are older than 60, especially in women.
  • Have had treatment for a past thyroid condition or cancer .

What Is Thyroiditis

Thyroiditis is inflammation of your thyroid gland. Your thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland located at the front of your neck under your skin. Its a part of your endocrine system and controls many of your bodys important functions by producing and releasing certain hormones.

Thyroiditis includes a group of individual conditions that cause thyroid inflammation but have different causes and symptoms. Thyroiditis can lead to over- or under-production of thyroid hormone.

In most types of thyroiditis, there are three phases, including:

  • Thyrotoxic phase: During this phase, your thyroid is inflamed and releases too many hormones, causing temporary thyrotoxicosis.
  • Hypothyroid phase: Following the excessive release of thyroid hormones for a few weeks or months, your thyroid wont have enough thyroid hormones to release. This leads to a lack of thyroid hormones or hypothyroidism. Hashimotos thyroiditis and radiation-induced thyroiditis usually permanently stay in the hypothyroid phase.
  • Euthyroid phase: During the euthyroid phase, your thyroid hormone levels are normal. This phase may come temporarily after the thyrotoxic phase before going to the hypothyroid phase, or it may come at the end after your thyroid gland has recovered from the inflammation and can maintain a normal hormone level.
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    When To See A Gp

    Symptoms of an underactive thyroid are often similar to those of other conditions, and they usually develop slowly, so you may not notice them for years.

    For example, if you are an age where you may be expecting the menopause, you may think you have started the menopause rather than having an underactive thyroid.

    You should see a GP and ask to be tested for an underactive thyroid if you have symptoms including:

    • being sensitive to the cold
    • dry skin and hair

    The only accurate way of finding out whether you have a thyroid problem is to have a thyroid function test, where a sample of blood is tested to measure your hormone levels.

    Read more about testing for an underactive thyroid.

    When Should I Worry About Thyroid Nodules

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    In most cases, thyroid nodules arent a cause for concern. But even though the vast majority of thyroid nodules are benign, some thyroid nodules do contain thyroid cancer.

    For this reason, you should see your healthcare provider so they can evaluate the nodule to be sure its benign. As with all cases of cancer, the earlier it can be diagnosed and treated, the better.

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    How Is Thyroid Disease Diagnosed

    Sometimes, thyroid disease can be difficult to diagnose because the symptoms are easily confused with those of other conditions. You may experience similar symptoms when you are pregnant or aging and you would when developing a thyroid disease. Fortunately, there are tests that can help determine if your symptoms are being caused by a thyroid issue. These tests include:

    • Physical exams.

    Blood tests

    One of the most definitive ways to diagnose a thyroid problem is through blood tests. Thyroid blood tests are used to tell if your thyroid gland is functioning properly by measuring the amount of thyroid hormones in your blood. These tests are done by taking blood from a vein in your arm. Thyroid blood tests are used to see if you have:

    • Hyperthyroidism.
    • Hypothyroidism.

    The specific blood tests that will be done to test your thyroid can include:

    These tests alone arent meant to diagnose any illness but may prompt your healthcare provider to do additional testing to evaluate for a possible thyroid disorder.

    Additional blood tests might include:

    Talk to your healthcare provider about the ranges for these thyroid blood tests. Your ranges might not be the same as someone elses. Thats often alright. If you have any concerns or worries about your blood test results, talk to your provider.

    Imaging tests

    An ultrasound typically takes about 20 to 30 minutes.

    Physical exam

    How Do You Shrink Thyroid Nodules

    Radioactive iodine. Doctors use radioactive iodine to treat hyperthyroidism. Taken as a capsule or in liquid form, radioactive iodine is absorbed by your thyroid gland. This causes the nodules to shrink and signs and symptoms of hyperthyroidism to subside, usually within two to three months.

    How often should thyroid nodules be checked?

    Currently, the ATA recommends that people with benign thyroid nodules get checked every six to 18 months. If the nodules do not grow in size, this interval can be extended to three to five years.

    Who is the best doctor for thyroid?

    But there are situations in which you may need to have an endocrinologist, a doctor who specializes in the endocrine system, oversee your care. An endocrinologist is particularly knowledgeable about the function of the thyroid gland and the bodys other hormone-secreting glands.

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    What Organ Gets Affected By Celiac Disease

    Celiac disease is a condition that results when the person has celiac disease, a autoimmune disorder that affects the small intestine. The condition can cause regular inflammation of the intestines, making it difficult to eat food without symptoms. Celiac disease is a serious health condition and should be treated as soon as possible if it is diagnosed.

    Your Muscles Feel Weak

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    Both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism can cause muscles to feel achy, weak, or stiff, according to Rodriguez. But, because thyroid symptoms often develop slowly, many people don’t notice the muscle aches or weakness right away, or brush it off as typical pain that comes from aging. Check in with your doctor if something feels off.

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