Signs Your Thyroid Isn’t Working Right
The thyroid, a butterfly-shaped gland in the neck, can have a dramatic impact on a huge variety of bodily functions. Women are as much as 10 times as likely as men to have a thyroid problem. Because of thyroid hormones far reach in the body—from brain to bowels—diagnosing a disorder can be challenging.
Here are some signs to watch out for:
Fatigue – Feeling tired and having no energy are issues associated with lots of conditions, but they’re strongly linked with hypothyroidism, the disorder that’s the result of too little thyroid hormone. If you’re still tired in the morning or all day after a full night’s sleep, that’s a clue that your thyroid may be underactive. Fatigue is the number one symptom.
Depression – Feeling unusually depressed or sad can also be a symptom of hypothyroidism. It’s thought that the production of too little thyroid hormone can have an impact on levels of “feel good” serotonin in the brain.
Jittery and Anxious – Anxiety and “feeling wired” are associated with hyperthyroidism, when the thyroid gland is making too much thyroid hormone.
Dry Skin – Skin that’s dry and itchy can be a symptom of hypothyroidism. The change in skin texture and appearance is probably due to slowed metabolism (caused by too little thyroid hormone production), which can reduce sweating.
Change in your Periods -Longer menstrual periods with a heavier flow and more cramps can be a sign of hypothyroidism, where thyroid hormones are in short supply. Your periods may be closer together. With hyperthyroidism, Periods are shorter, farther apart and may be very light.
Chills or Sweats – Feeling cold or having chills is associated with hypothyroidism. People with hyperthyroidism sometimes feel too warm or sweat profusely.
Hoarseness – A change in your voice or a lump in your throat could be a sign of a thyroid disorder. Feel your neck to see if you can detect any signs of thyroid swelling.
Sleepy or Sleeplessness – Want to sleep all of the time? It could be hypothyroidism. Can’t sleep? It could be hyperthyroidism.
Weight Gain – Sudden weight gain can be due to an underactive thyroid. Sudden weight loss can be due to an overactive thyroid.
Thinning Hair – Dry, brittle hair that breaks or falls out can be a sign of hypothyroidism. Too little thyroid hormone disrupts your hair growth cycle.
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