Tuesday, April 16, 2024

How Do You Check Thyroid

What Is The Best Thermometer To Use

How to Do a Self Thyroid Exam

Most specialists believe that the digital thermometers are not accurate enough and the temp range can vary significantly. It is recommended to use the old-fashioned mercury thermometer. The downside of a mercury thermometer is that if it were to break, toxic mercury vapor would be released.

I recommend a Galinstan, which is a liquid non-mercury thermometer that has a great degree of accuracy. If you are going to use a digital thermometer, this one seems to work well.

With the Galinstan or mercury thermometer, be sure to shake it down to 95F/35C degrees the night before checking or if doing the adrenal test, right before testing. Be sure to hold it under your armpit for a full 10 minutes before checking.

While the temperature is recording, you could read a book or website, listen to light music or watch a video. Be sure not to move around other than the lightest of movements as needed. For ways to improve thyroid function, read this article and if you are looking to improve adrenal function than you will want to read this article.

If you want to work with a functional health coach, I recommend this article with tips on how to find a great coach. On our website, we offer long-distance functional health coaching programs. For further support with your health goals, just reach outour fantastic coaches are here to support your journey.

How Can I Test My Thyroid At Home

There are a number of factors that can affect your thyroid function from certain conditions to surgery or medications. On top of that, there are also risk factors – these include family, history, age, and gender – with women five to eight times more likely to experience thyroid problems than men. The most reliable way to know more about your thyroid health is with a simple blood test.

The most common type of thyroid test is a blood test which checks for specific biomarkers to get an insight into your thyroid health. These tests typically measure thyroid-stimulating hormone , T4, and T3. This test can be taken with your doctor but if you would prefer to check from home, this test can be taken using an at-home lab test.

LetsGetCheckeds range of at-home Thyroid Tests measure key hormones and antibodies to help identify the presence of a thyroid disorder, such as hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism .

The test will arrive in discreet packaging with a return envelope and clear instructions inside. Online test results will be available within 2-5 days and our dedicated clinical team will be available throughout the process for support and guidance and will be available to speak with you about your results and the next steps you should take. If you would like more detail about the sampling process, find out more here.

What Is A Thyroid Function Test

A thyroid function test is a blood test to check the levels of the hormones made by your thyroid gland. The test also checks the level of a hormone made by the pituitary gland in your brain, which acts on your thyroid gland.

The two hormones, thyroxine and thyroid-stimulating hormone , work together and are usually in balance. In a healthy person the brain produces just the right amount of TSH to keep the thyroid gland ticking over. The thyroid gland then produces just the right amount of thyroxine.

This is called a feedback loop: if the thyroid gland makes too much thyroxine it will feed back to the brain to make less TSH. This diagram shows the feedback loop between the thyroid gland in your neck and the pituitary gland in the brain:

See the separate leaflet called Thyroid Problems for more details.

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What Should I Do With The Analysis

You should use the analysis to empower yourself and learn more about your results, but not to diagnose yourself with a thyroid-related condition, such as hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, Graves disease, or Hashimotos thyroiditis. Proper diagnosis and treatment require a holistic look at your previous medical history, symptoms, lifestyle, and more. Your doctor is the best person to do this.

You can use this information to inspire questions or use it as a starting point for a conversation with your doctor at your next appointment. Asking the right questions can help you know what to expect.

Also, consider bringing along a doctor discussion guide for even more guidanceit lists common vocabulary terms your doctor may use and important questions about symptoms, causes, diagnosis, treatment, and living well with thyroid disease.

Is There Anything Else I Need To Know About A Tsh Test

Check Your Thyroid At Home With This Simple Test

TSH levels may be high or low even when your thyroid gland is healthy. Serious illnesses not related to your thyroid may cause lower TSH levels for a short time. And TSH levels may be higher in people over age 80, even though they don’t have any thyroid problems.

Pregnancy also affects TSH levels. They are often a little low during the first three months. But sometimes, thyroid disease develops during pregnancy. If you develop thyroid disease during pregnancy, your provider will monitor your condition through your pregnancy and after your baby is born. That’s because hyperthyroidism, and less often, hypothyroidism, can continue after you give birth. If you have a history of thyroid disease, be sure to talk with your provider if you are pregnant or are thinking of becoming pregnant.

Newborn babies are routinely screened with a TSH test to see if they were born with hypothyroidism .

Also Check: Doctors Who Specialize In Thyroid

What Do The Results Mean

Your TSH test results can tell you if your thyroid is making too much or too little thyroid. But the test can’t explain why your TSH levels may be too high or too low.

If your test results aren’t normal, your provider will probably order other thyroid blood tests to find out what’s causing your thyroid problem. These blood tests may include:

  • Thyroid antibodies test to help diagnose an autoimmune thyroid disorder, such as:
  • Graves’ disease, the most common cause of hyperthyroidism
  • Hashimoto’s disease, that the most common cause of hypothyroidism

In certain cases, an abnormal TSH result may be a sign of a pituitary gland problem, but this doesn’t happen often.

Learn more about laboratory tests, reference ranges, and understanding results.

Who Else Can See My Lab Results Or Personal Analysis

We take online privacy very seriously, especially when it comes to individual and personalized health information.

We do not track which lab tests you analyze and we do not store any lab values you enter. You are the only one who can see your analysis. Also, you will not be able to return to your results, so if you would like to save them it is best to print them.

Please see our Privacy Policy for more information.

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What Information Will I Receive From The Tool

Once you enter your information, the thyroid function test analyzer will tell you if your result is low, optimal, or high and what that might mean. Youll also learn a little bit about the test, why its done, and what it measures.

Patients with thyroid cancer, pregnancy or pituitary disorders must seek a specialist’s care.

When Is A Thyroid Function Test Done

Thyroid exam: How to check your thyroid with Dr. Christianson

A thyroid function test is requested in a variety of situations, including if you:

  • have signs or symptoms of an underactive thyroid gland or an overactive thyroid gland
  • have signs of problems with your pituitary gland
  • are taking medicines that can affect your thyroid function, such as amiodarone and lithium
  • are pregnant
  • are a woman with infertility problems
  • are taking thyroid medicine, such as thyroxine, to monitor how you are responding to it.

Also Check: How To Stop Thyroid Medication

Medical History And Physical Exam

If you have any signs or symptoms that suggest you might have thyroid cancer, your health care professional will want to know your complete medical history. You will be asked questions about your possible risk factors, symptoms, and any other health problems or concerns. If someone in your family has had thyroid cancer or tumors called pheochromocytomas, it is important to tell your doctor, as you might be at high risk for this disease.

Your doctor will examine you to get more information about possible signs of thyroid cancer and other health problems. During the exam, the doctor will pay special attention to the size and firmness of your thyroid and any enlarged lymph nodes in your neck.

Your Thyroid Does Change As You Age

As with any organ, your thyroid may start to function differently as you get older.

Thyroid dysfunction generally occurs in either early adulthood or between the ages of 40 to 50, Lee said. As we get into our 70s, TSH naturally increases, meaning that your thyroid hormone levels may shift to be a little lower. This seems to happen to protect our bodies as we age, with less stress on our heart and metabolic system.

This is important to note, Lee said, because it gives physicians a greater threshold to treat someone who is older who may have higher TSH levels. Alternatively, low TSH levels can be more harmful the older we get.

This isnt to say that if youre young, you dont need to think about your thyroid at all. Thyroid disorders can happen at many different ages, as can lumps.

We do know that the younger population, those in their 20s, 30s and 40s, can develop thyroid nodules, Rao said. The vast majority of these nodules, especially if theyre below one centimeter, are 95% of the time completely benign. But its still important to be aware that they are there, and periodically monitor them.

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What Do The Results From My Thyroid Function Test Mean

If a result in your thyroid function blood test is outside the normal range it can be flagged as high or low . Interpretation of the many variations in test results is complex and an abnormal result may not mean that anything is wrong. Other health conditions, extreme stress and pregnancy affect the levels of thyroid hormones, as well as medicines. Talking with your doctor about what your results mean for you is important.An abnormal TSH usually indicates a deficiency or an excess of thyroid hormones available to your body, but it does not indicate why this is happening. An abnormal TSH result is usually followed by additional testing of FT3 and/or FT4 to investigate the cause.A high TSH result:

  • often means an underactive thyroid gland
  • can also occur if you have an underactive thyroid gland and are receiving too little thyroid hormone medication
  • can, in rare cases, indicate that you have a problem with your pituitary gland, eg, a tumour.

A low TSH result:

  • can indicate an overactive thyroid gland or damage to your pituitary gland that is preventing it from producing TSH
  • can also occur if you have an underactive thyroid gland and are receiving too much thyroid hormone medication.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging Scan

How to Test Your Thyroid Function at Home

MRI scans use magnets instead of radiation to create detailed cross-sectional images of your body. MRI can be used to look for cancer in the thyroid, or cancer that has spread to nearby or distant parts of the body. But ultrasound is usually the first choice for looking at the thyroid. MRI can provide very detailed images of soft tissues such as the thyroid gland. MRI scans are also very helpful in looking at the brain and spinal cord.

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Whats Included In A Full Thyroid Panel

A full thyroid panel usually checks thyroid-stimulating hormone , triiodothyronine , and thyroxine levels. In some cases, a blood test for thyroid function will also check your bloodâs level of TPO antibodies. If you have abnormal thyroid hormone levels, high levels of TPO antibodies can point to an autoimmune thyroid disease as a possible reason for those abnormal levels.

Can You Test Yourself At Home

The answer is yes, sort of.

While you can’t draw your own blood to check your thyroid function, you can take advantage of several other strategies designed to tell you how well your thyroid is functioning.

It’s important to realize that these tests are not necessarily more accurate than getting your blood tested, however, so I still recommend that you get your blood work from a physician.

These tests can, however, give you an idea as to whether or not your symptoms are related to your thyroid or to something else.

If you have many of the symptoms of hypothyroidism then you should consider using these tests to determine if you need further testing or treatment.

Also Check: If Thyroid Levels Are High

Testing Your Adrenals With Btt

The way most people experience low morning cortisol would be in an inability to get out of bed. It just seems so hard to drag yourself out of bed. If this is the case, it is most likely a low functional HPA axis in the morning.

To test your BTT to analyze cortisol levels throughout the day, follow the following strategy:

  • 3 Hours after waking
  • 3 Hours after that
  • 3 Hours after that
  • Take these 3 temperatures and add them up and divide by 3 to get your daily average temperature .
  • Do this for 5 days and analyze the results of each day. If any of the days temps are more than .2F off from another, it may be a sign of adrenal dysfunction.
  • We dont want to test in the evening or at night because cortisol should normally be low at that stage. Cortisol should be at its highest in the morning and slowly taper down as the day goes on.

    If you are using a new adrenal supplement, give it 5 days before you begin testing to give it time to work on the HPA axis before doing a 5 day DATS. Some other home tests you could do to test your adrenal function include static blood pressure, orthostatic blood pressure and the pupillary constriction test. I explain these in great detail in this article.

    Can I Take Thyroid Tests During Pregnancy

    How to test your Thyroid at home

    Yes, you can if need be.In fact,it is not uncommon to have thyroid changes during pregnancy. While overactive thyroid affects about one in every 500 pregnancies, underactive thyroid happens in around one in every 250 pregnancies. If you have a pre-existing thyroid condition or develop a thyroid condition during pregnancy, your doctor will monitor your condition and ask for blood tests too. Most likely, your thyroid hormone levels will be checked every 4 to 6 weeks during the first half of your conception, and at least once after 30 weeks.

    A thyroid panel test can help identify various conditions including hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, Graves disease, and thyroid cancer. For all your lab test related needs, visit Metropolis.


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    Thyroid Testing: How It Works

    Thyroid tests use a blood sample to measure various hormone levels. Thyroid-stimulating hormone , for example, is often measured to indirectly check if your thyroid gland is producing enough thyroid hormones. TSH levels are usually higher than normal if you have an underactive thyroid .

    Thyroid function tests can also measure thyroid hormones like thyroxine to provide a better understanding of how low â or how high â your thyroid hormone levels are.

    Pattern #: Depressed Thyroid Binding Globulin Leading To Hypothyroidism

    This is a pattern associated with High Testosterone. High Testosterone reduces thyroid binding hormone levels making more free hormones available.

    The thyroid and pituitary are again working properly, but this time there is too much T4 converted to T3 . High levels of testosterone is the cause which also has the added effect of decreasing the amount of thyroid binding globulin .

    The high levels of T3 in conjunction with low TBG causes cells to become resistant to T3. They close the doors and do not allow anymore T3 into the cells. TSH levels will be normal even though the patient is showing signs of hypothyroidism.

    This pattern is similar to insulin resistance. In fact, patients with thyroid over conversion often also present with insulin resistance and polycystic ovary syndrome which is also caused by increased testosterone levels. Managing blood sugar is extremely important. Since there is already too much T3, prescription thyroid medication will not help in this pattern.

    Lab Evaluation: Normal or Low TSH, Normal or Low T4 & T3 Levels, Normal or High Free T4 & High Free T3 Levels

    Common Causes: Testosterone replacement or insulin resistance.

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    What Are Thyroid Nodules

    Thyroid nodules are small bumps that can form inside the thyroid gland. Approximately 90% of thyroid nodules are non-cancerous however, in some cases, these nodules may suggest the presence of thyroid cancer. Also, thyroid nodules can sometimes alter thyroid hormone levels, resulting in either hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.

    Women are about 4 times more likely than men to have thyroid nodules. And older age, a history of thyroid radiation, and iron deficiency are all linked with a greater likelihood of having thyroid nodules.

    What Imaging Tests Do Doctors Use To Diagnose And Find The Cause Of Thyroid Disease

    Getting To Know Diseases of the Thyroid

    Your health care professional may order one or more imaging tests to diagnose and find the cause of thyroid disease. A trained technician usually does these tests in your doctors office, outpatient center, or hospital. A radiologist, a doctor who specializes in medical imaging, reviews the images and sends a report for your health care professional to discuss with you.

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    What Is The Thyroid Gland

    The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped endocrine gland that is normally located in the lower front of the neck. The thyroids job is to make thyroid hormones, which are secreted into the blood and then carried to every tissue in the body. Thyroid hormones help the body use energy, stay warm and keep the brain, heart, muscles, and other organs working as they should.

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