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5 Warning Signs and Symptoms of Hypothyroidism

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Hypothyroidism occurs when your body does not make enough thyroid hormone. The thyroid gland is a small butterfly-shaped gland situated in front of the neck. It releases hormones to help the body regulate and use energy.

Your thyroid gland handles supplying energy to almost every organ. It controls functions such as the heartbeat and the work of the digestive system. Without the right amount of thyroid hormone, your body’s functioning begins to decline.

Hypothyroidism, also called underactive thyroid, affects women more often than men.

Signs and Symptoms

In this article, I have discussed the 5 Warning Signs and Symptoms of Hypothyroidism. It will help you to detect such an issue if you are suffering from it.

1-Feeling tired

The most common symptoms of hypothyroidism are malaise. Thyroid hormones control your energy balance and affect whether you feel ready to go or take a nap.

The thyroid hormone gets signals from the brain. It regulates cells to change their function accordingly. As an extreme example, hibernating animals experience hypothyroidism and sleep longer. People with hypothyroidism experience fatigue and insensitivity.

In one study, adults with hypothyroidism experienced physical malaise and hypoactivity. They also reported low motivation and mental exhaustion.

People with hypothyroidism are restless even if they sleep more. Another study found that 50% of people with hypothyroidism are consistently tired. In comparison, 42% of people with low thyroid hormone levels slept more than before.

Being sleepier than usual may be a sign of hypothyroidism.

2-Increased weight

Unusual weight gain is another common symptom of hypothyroidism.

When thyroid levels are low, metabolism changes modes. Rather than burning calories for growth and activity, it reduces the energy used at rest or the basal metabolic rate. Due to this, your body tends to store more calories from your diet in the form of fat. As a result, even with a constant calorie intake, low thyroid hormone levels can lead to weight gain.

In fact, in one study, people newly diagnosed with hypothyroidism increased by an average of 15 to 30 pounds (7 to 14 kg) in the first year of diagnosis.

Consult an Endocrinologist if you seem to be gaining weight despite a good diet and exercise plan. It may be a clue that something else is happening.

3-Feeling cold

When calories are burned, heat is released as a by-product. For example, think about how hot it gets when you exercise. This is because you are burning calories.

Even if you sit down, you burn a small number of calories. But, in hypothyroidism, the basal metabolic rate is reduced. The amount of heat generated is also reduced. Thyroid hormone also increases the thermostat of brown fat (fat that produces heat). Brown fat is essential for maintaining body temperature in cold weather. But hypothyroidism prevents it from doing its job.

This is why low levels of thyroid hormone make you feel colder than those around you. About 40% of people with hypothyroidism feel more sensitive to colds than usual.

4-Muscle and joint pain and weakness

Low thyroid hormone switches the metabolic shift to catabolism. During catabolism, muscle weakness can lead to liability. The process of destroying muscle tissue can also cause pain.

A study shows that people with hypothyroidism may feel twice as weak as ordinary people. Also, 34% of people with hypothyroidism experience muscle spasms.

After strenuous activity, weakness and pain are usual. But new, increasing weaknesses and pain are good reasons to consult an Endocrinologist.

5-Loss of hair

The thyroid hormone regulates hair follicles.

Hair follicles are more sensitive to hypothyroidism than other tissues. It is due to their short lifespan and fast turnover of stem cells.

Low thyroid hormones stop hair follicle regeneration, leading to hair loss. This usually improves when thyroid problems are treated. One study found that 25-30% of patients who see a hair loss specialist have low thyroid hormone levels. It increased to 40% for people over the age of 40.

Causes of Hypothyroidism

  • Autoimmune disease
  • Over-response to hyperthyroidism treatment
  • Thyroid surgery
  • Radiation therapy
  • Medications
  • Congenital disease
  • Pituitary disorder
  • Pregnancy
  • Iodine deficiency

Treatment

Standard treatment for hypothyroidism includes daily use of the synthetic thyroid hormone levothyroxine. These oral medications restore proper hormone levels. And reverse the signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism.

Who to consult?

If you observe any of the symptoms mentioned above, don’t take them for granted.

If you have recently been diagnosed with hypothyroidism, there is nothing to worry about. The treatment is easy, safe, and effective. You should regularly consult with Endocrinologist to have proper treatment.

Most treatments are based on supplementing low hormone levels with artificial hormones. These hormones replace what your body does not do on its own and help restore normal body function.

You can book your appointment with one of the best Endocrinologists in your area through Marham.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1-Which food is good for hypothyroidism?

People with hypothyroidism have many healthy food choices. Including:

  • Eggs
  • Meat
  • Fish,
  • Gluten-free grains and seeds
  • Dairy products
  • Caffeine-free drinks.

2-What Exacerbates Hypothyroidism?

Iodine imbalances, too much or too little, can cause or exacerbate hypothyroidism.

3-Is Lemon Water Good for Hypothyroidism?

Lemon consists of Vitamin C, which is good for hypothyroidism.

4-Are Potatoes and Spinach Good for Hypothyroidism?

Spinach is an excellent source of many vitamins and minerals. Including iron and some B vitamins. Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of vitamin A, which supports thyroid hormones. So both are good for Hypothyroidism.

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