The thyroid is an endocrine gland shaped like a butterfly situated in front of the trachea. The gland also houses another smaller glands called the parathyroid glands which secrete different hormone than the thyroid gland. Is thyroid gland important to us?
The thyroid gland secretes the thyroid hormones which are important to regulate the body’s metabolism such as heart rate, fat metabolism and carbohydrate metabolism. The thyroid hormones cannot be too much or too little as this can present its own problem to the body. Excess of thyroid hormones is called thyrotoxicosis while lack of thyroid hormones is called hypothyroidism. Here are some of the common presentation or symptoms of thyroid problems.
- Intolerance to cold
Our body maintains a suitable temperature of 36 degrees constantly because of the action of the muscles and tissues which consistently giving off the heat in a controlled manner. This can only be achieved with the help of thyroid hormones circulating the body.
Lack of fat, protein and carbohydrate metabolism means less energy for the body. In the long run, a hypothyroid person will experience fatigue. Lethargy and fatigue will result in a domino effect since these two will lead to weight gain and reduce appetite which later can also contribute to symptoms of depression as well.
The thyroid hormones also help in keeping a good bowel motion in a healthy person. Without or lack of it can lead to constipation. Constipation due to hypothyroidism is difficult to treat with conventional methods such as with lactose or methylcellulose since the cause of constipation is regarding the bowel tissue motion and not the physical issue such as lack of fibre.
- B) Hyperthyroidism (thyrotoxicosis)
- Intolerance to heat
Thyrotoxicosis is the exact opposite to hypothyroidism and it is no wonder when the symptoms of the former are the exact opposite to the latter. Due to excess thyroid hormones, the body can no longer set the limit to body heat production which lead to the feeling of fever, dislike to heat and sweating. More heat also generated from other physical symptoms such as tremor and palpitation.
- High in energy
Having high energy is great as people can be more productive and feeling more positive. However, the constant elevation of basal energy level can eventually lead to “crash” symptoms where there will be severe fatigue afterwards. Moreover, due to the high overall body’s metabolism, more energy will be consumed from the sugar and fat storage as well. This, in turn, make the person lose weight and always hungry. Losing weight might sound enticing but one has to be reminded that other systems like the endocrine, the brain and intestinal system also need the energy and nutrients to function well and if they do not receive an adequate amount of necessary nutrients and energy, other problems could arise like lack of menstruation in women.
This is the exact opposite of the hypothyroidism. Diarrhoea poses other problems if not treated well that are dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. But to exclude other causes of diarrhoea can sometimes be difficult as many other diagnoses may overlap.
Thyroid problems require early recognition so that not only the symptoms can be treated immediately but also the causes of the thyroid abnormality leading to the thyroid problem itself. If you are typing “thyroid treatments near me” in the search engine, there will be a plethora of results shown. In order to get the best treatment and diagnosis, consult a professional now.