January is Thyroid Awareness Month. Most wouldn’t believe how much trouble this little butterfly-shaped gland can cause if it is not balanced. If left untreated, it can cause many physical and mental symptoms that can range from mild to debilitating. Annual checkups with your doctors and bloodwork will help detect if there is a variance with your thyroid levels. At Dedication Health, we are discussing the most common questions people have in regards to the thyroid gland and spreading awareness of thyroid disorders.
3 FAQ’s for Thyroid Awareness Month
What is the Thyroid Gland and Why is it Important?
The thyroid is a vital gland at the base of the neck that plays a vital role throughout the whole body. It is responsible for sending out special hormones that help regulate metabolism, body temperature, mood, and even brain development. In order to keep the body functioning properly, the hormones (T3 and T4) need to be produced at the appropriate amount. If not, it can cause a thyroid disorder that can lead to many health complications such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, and even infertility. The good news is, there are several ways to treat a thyroid disorder under the care of internal medicine doctors with medication and diet.
Are There Different Types of Thyroid Disorders?
Yes, the two generalized types are Hyperthyroidism and Hypothyroidism. It is estimated that approximately 20 million Americans have some form of thyroid disorder. When your thyroid is working harder than it should, this is hyperthyroidism. People will an overactive thyroid will typically experience weight loss, increased appetite, shakiness, anxiety, fatigue, hair loss, insomnia, double vision, sensitivity to heat, and increased sweating. On the other hand, hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid is not working as hard as it should.
People with an underactive thyroid will typically experience weight gain, poor appetite, depression, numbness in limbs, muscle aches, and sensitivity to the cold. These two types can be further diagnosed as a more specific disorder depending on symptoms and other test results. However, it is important to note that most of these symptoms can be indicators of other diseases and disorders besides a thyroid disorder. By working alongside a healthcare provider, they will be able to figure out how to best treat any possible thyroid imbalances or disorders.
What Should I do if I am Concerned About My Thyroid?
Up to 60% of people with a thyroid disorder do not know they have one. If you are experiencing symptoms that have you concerned, it is best to speak with your primary healthcare provider as soon as possible. Typically, this takes a physical examination and some blood work to see how your thyroid is functioning. As you prepare for your appointment, notate your symptoms and when they started so that your doctor can have a clear medical history to take into consideration. Also, if you have questions regarding thyroid health it would be the perfect time to have them addressed as well.
Make Thyroid Health a Priority for Thyroid Awareness Month
Thyroid health is extremely important for your overall health and should not be ignored. This Thyroid Awareness Month, make thyroid health a priority. If you are feeling unwell and suspect your thyroid may be the culprit, talk to your healthcare professional as soon as you can before your symptoms get worse. If you are currently seeing a healthcare provider for a thyroid disorder, make sure to keep routine visits and bloodwork to monitor your levels. Please contact us today if you live near Chicago and are looking for thyroid care.
To learn more about our concierge medical practice or join our practice, call Dedication Health now. You can reach our office at 847-986-6770. You may also complete our online contact form and we will be in touch with you as soon as possible. Dedication Health is conveniently located at 710 Oak St, Winnetka, IL 60093 in Chicago’s North Shore.
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