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The Affects of Thyroid Disease in Women

Posted Oct 15 2011 3:03am

There are approximately 27 million people affected by Thyroid Disease in the United States. This disease is most commonly found in women and it is believed that 4 out of 100 women suffer from some form of autoimmune thyroid disorder.

A thyroid that is under producing thyroid hormone is termed hypothyroidism. It is characterized by insufficient levels of the primary thyroid hormones thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). Thyroxine is transformed into its active form of triiodothyronine by the liver.

Hypothyroidism is the most commonly diagnosed disorder among women. Symptoms vary, but the most common complaints include fatigue, weight gain, high cholesterol and depression. However, there is a flip side to this disease. A slightly lower number of women suffer from Hyperthyroidism. This disease is defined as an over production of the thyroid hormone in the blood.

The Symptoms of thyroid disease:

Hyperthyroidism:

Feeling warm Increased perspiration Weakness and fatigue Trembling hands Rapid heartbeat Weight loss Diarrhea Irritability / anxiety Eye discomfort Menstrual changes Inability to conceive

Hypothyroidism:

Fatigue Depression Sluggishness Feeling cold Weight gain of 5″10 pounds Dry hair and skin Menstrual changes

Hormone Imbalance And Menopause:

Unfortunately, about 20% of menopausal women in the United States are diagnosed with a problematic thyroid. However, many of them go undiagnosed. Hypothyroidism is indicative of women in their 30′s or 40′s as they are perimenopausal. This is the 15 year time period before actual menopause. Many women can start menopause in their late 40′s, especially if their mother’s experienced an early menopause.

What causes a woman to develop hypothyroidism?

A hormone imbalance of estrogen and progesterone, as well as emotional and physical stresses can cause thyroid dysfunction. Perimenopause, menopause, and pregnancy are known culprits of hormone imbalance that can cause hypothyroidism. An imbalance of more estrogen than progesterone can cause the hypoactive thyroid to produce less thyroid hormone, resulting in hypothryoidism. This can be remedied by a prescription of progesterone supplements to bring this imbalance more into balance, thus alleviating symptoms of hypoactivity.

Additional causes include adrenal fatigue and insulin resistance. The adrenal glands are located just above the kidneys where they release adrenaline in response to the flight or fight reaction. These responses are stress related, if they persist for too long, they can cause the adrenal gland to become fatigued. Once this occurs, the thyroid can not function properly, thus resulting in hypothyroidism.

Poor nutrition can affect the thyroids capability to function by causing insulin resistance. Anyone diagnosed with hypoactive thyroid should be tested for insulin resistance.

The thyroid requires good , managed and a balance of hormones to function normally. Everything in the body works together as a whole to keep it running in tip top shape.

Oftentimes, symptoms of a thyroid problem can be mistaken for another disease, thus delaying you much needed treatment. A physician can perform a blood test to discover if the thyroid is indeed the problem or some other underlying or more serious problem is the cause. If in fact you do have a thyroid problem, you will begin to feel much better after a few weeks of proper treatment.

Barb Hicks is an experience writer and licensed registered nurse who loves to share her knowledge. You can find her lessons about and on Clivir – the Free learning Community Site.


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