Hypothyroidism is a condition characterized by abnormally low thyroid hormone production. There are many disorders that result in hypothyroidism. These disorders may directly or indirectly involve the thyroid gland. Because thyroid hormone affects growth, development, and many cellular processes, inadequate thyroid hormone has widespread consequences for the body.
Women, especially those older than age 60, are more likely to have hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism upsets the normal balance of chemical reactions in your body.
Hypothyroidism results when the thyroid gland fails to produce enough hormones. Hypothyroidism may be due to a number of factors, including:
- Autoimmune disease. People who develop a particular inflammatory disorder known as Hashimoto's thyroiditis suffer from the most common cause of hypothyroidism. Autoimmune disorders occur when your immune system produces antibodies that attack your own tissues. Sometimes this process involves your thyroid gland. These antibodies affect the thyroid's ability to produce hormones.
- Treatment for hyperthyroidism. People who produce too much thyroid hormone (hyperthyroidism) are often treated with radioactive iodine or anti-thyroid medications to reduce and normalize their thyroid function. However, in some cases, treatment of hyperthyroidism can result in permanent hypothyroidism.
- Thyroid surgery. Removing all or a large portion of your thyroid gland can diminish or halt hormone production.
- Radiation therapy. Radiation used to treat cancers of the head and neck can affect your thyroid gland and may lead to hypothyroidism.
- Medications. A number of medications can contribute to hypothyroidism. One such medication is lithium, which is used to treat certain psychiatric disorders.
Less often, hypothyroidism may result from one of the following:
- Congenital disease. Some babies are born with a defective thyroid gland or no thyroid gland. In most cases, the thyroid gland didn't develop normally for unknown reasons.
- Pituitary disorder. A relatively rare cause of hypothyroidism is the failure of the pituitary gland to produce enough thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) - usually because of a benign tumor of the pituitary gland.
- Pregnancy. Some women develop hypothyroidism during or after pregnancy (postpartum hypothyroidism), often because they produce antibodies to their own thyroid gland. Left untreated, hypothyroidism increases the risk of miscarriage, premature delivery and preeclampsia - a condition that causes a significant rise in a woman's blood pressure during the last three months of pregnancy. It can also seriously affect the developing fetus.
- Iodine deficiency. The trace mineral iodine - found primarily in seafood, seaweed, plants grown in iodine-rich soil and iodized salt - is essential for the production of thyroid hormones. In some parts of the world, iodine deficiency is common, but the addition of iodine to table salt has virtually eliminated this problem. Conversely, taking in too much iodine can cause hypothyroidism.
The signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism vary, depending on the severity of the hormone deficiency. At first, you may barely notice the symptoms of hypothyroidism, such as fatigue and weight gain, or you may simply attribute them to getting older. But as your metabolism continues to slow, you may develop more obvious signs and symptoms. Hypothyroidism signs and symptom may include:
- Dry skin
- Muscle aches, tenderness and stiffness
- Thinning hair
- Impaired memory
- Increased sensitivity to cold
- Unexplained weight gain
- Muscle weakness
- Pain, stiffness or swelling in your joints
- Slowed heart rate
- Puffy face
- Elevated blood cholesterol level
- Heavier than normal or irregular menstrual periods
When hypothyroidism isn't treated, signs and symptoms can gradually become more severe. Constant stimulation of your thyroid gland to release more hormones may lead to an enlarged thyroid (goiter).
Advanced hypothyroidism, known as myxedema, is rare, but when it occurs it can be life threatening. Signs and symptoms include low blood pressure, decreased breathing, decreased body temperature, unresponsiveness and even coma. In extreme cases, myxedema can be fatal.
Although anyone can develop hypothyroidism, you're at an increased risk if you:
- Are a woman older than age 60
- Have an autoimmune disease
- Have a close relative, such as a parent or grandparent, with an autoimmune disease
- Have been treated with radioactive iodine or anti-thyroid medications
- Received radiation to your neck or upper chest
- Have had thyroid surgery (partial thyroidectomy)
- Have been pregnant or delivered a baby within the past six months
At bodhin, we consider a disease to be the result from emotional distress and frustration, which blocks the life force energy into various different organs or glands. Homeopathy considers thyroid problems as one such autoimmune glandular dysfunction. Homeopathy offers better chances of a cure since the treatment is based on the person's individual constitution. Homeopathic treatment may be useful as a supportive therapy for regulating both "hyper" and "hypo" conditions of the thyroid.
Conventional treatment of thyroid dysfunction relies mainly on drugs and surgery, whereas homeopathic treatment improves the function of the thyroid gland through natural means. Homeopathy may save your thyroid from irradiation or allow you to gradually wean off of thyroid drugs. Our remedies work by stimulating the body's own healing power. They stimulate the body to reactivate the hormone secretions, replenish and restore the thyroid tissue through the pituitary and other glands as a whole allowing the body to heal itself.
Thus, homeopathic remedies will help boost your energy, improve circulation, and soothe metabolism by balancing "hyper" or "hypo" thyroid functions. To conclude, homoeopathy heals by finding and curing the roots of the disease. It has a cleansing effect and stimulates thyroid activity by implementing a general regulating influence on the thyroid. Hence, for a safe, natural, effective, and long-lasting answer for your thyroid problems, consider homeopathy.
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