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Changes in the thyroid can cause several symptoms, which if not well interpreted can go unnoticed and the problem can continue to get worse. When the functioning of the thyroid is altered, this gland can be working in an exaggerated way, also known as hyperthyroidism, or it can be under functioning, which is also known as hypothyroidism.
While hyperthyroidism can cause symptoms such as restlessness, nervousness, difficulty concentrating and weight loss, hypothyroidism causes symptoms such as tiredness, memory loss, easy to put on weight, dry and cold skin, irregular menstrual cycle and hair loss.
If any of these symptoms are noticed, it is important that you consult an endocrinologist as soon as possible, so that he can ask for blood tests, which measure the levels of thyroid hormone in the body, or an ultrasound of the thyroid, to check the existence and size of possible nodules.
However, there are some general symptoms that you should be aware of, as they can indicate problems or changes in the functioning of your thyroid gland, such as:
1. Weight gain or loss
Weight gain for no apparent reason, especially if there has been no change in diet or day-to-day activities, is always worrisome and can be caused by hypothyroidism, where the thyroid gland is underfunctioning and slows down the entire body. body. However, weight loss for no apparent reason can also occur, which can be related to hyperthyroidism and the presence of Graves' Disease, for example.
2. Difficulty concentrating and forgetting
Feeling that your head is constantly out of place, often having difficulty concentrating or forgetting constantly, can be a symptom of changes in thyroid functioning, and lack of concentration can be a sign of hyperthyroidism and forgetfulness a sign of hypothyroidism.See symptoms of hyperthyroidism.
3. Hair loss and dry skin
Hair loss is normal during periods of great stress and in the autumn and spring seasons, but if this hair loss becomes very pronounced or extends beyond these times, it may indicate that you have some change in thyroid functioning. In addition, dry and itchy skin may be indicative of thyroid problems, especially if these symptoms are not related to cold, dry weather.
4. Mood swings
The deficit or excess of thyroid hormones in the body can cause mood swings, hyperthyroidism can cause irritability, anxiety and agitation, while hypothyroidism can cause constant sadness or depression due to changes in serotonin levels in the brain.
Furthermore, changes in thyroid function can also cause digestion difficulties and constipation, which cannot be resolved with diet and exercise.
6. Drowsiness, tiredness and muscle pain
Drowsy, constant tiredness and an increase in the number of hours you sleep per night can be a sign of hypothyroidism, which slows down the body's functions and causes a feeling of constant fatigue. In addition, unexplained muscle aches or tingling can also be another sign, as a lack of thyroid hormone can damage the nerves that send signals from the brain to the rest of your body, causing tingling and twinges in the body.
7. Discomfort in the throat and neck
The thyroid gland is located in the neck and, therefore, if pain, discomfort or the presence of a nodule or lump in the neck region is perceived, it may be an indication that the gland is altered, which may interfere with its proper functioning.
As soon as you notice any thyroid-related changes, it is important to go to the general practitioner or endocrinologist for diagnostic tests. Also see how to do a thyroid self-exam.
8. Palpitations and high blood pressure
The palpitations that sometimes make you feel the pulse in the neck and wrist, can be a symptom that indicates that the thyroid is not working as it should. In addition, high blood pressure can be another symptom, especially if it does not improve with exercise and diet, and hypothyroidism can also cause an increase in the levels of bad cholesterol in the body.
To evaluate the functioning of the thyroid, the doctor may indicate the dosage of some hormones in the blood, such as T3, T4, TSH, in addition to some antibodies, such as anti-thyroglobulin and antiperoxidase, for example. In addition, imaging tests such as thyroid ultrasound or thyroid scintigraphy may be indicated. If the presence of alterations is noted, a thyroid biopsy may also be indicated. Learn more about tests that evaluate the thyroid.
The thyroid is a gland present in the neck and whose main function is to regulate metabolism and promote the proper functioning of the body, as it participates in the formation of hormones that act directly on the heart, liver and kidneys, in addition to acting on development, menstrual cycle, body and brain metabolism, influencing memory, concentration, mood and emotional states.
How to treat thyroid disorders
Treatment for thyroid alterations should be guided by the endocrinologist according to the alteration presented, present symptoms and test results, and the use of drugs to regulate thyroid function and, in some cases, may be indicated. surgery to remove the gland, requiring lifelong hormone replacement therapy. See what medicines are used to treat thyroid problems.
Watch the video below to see how nutrition can help:
Thyroid changes in pregnancy
Those who have hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism may have a harder time getting pregnant and have a higher risk of miscarriage and low I.Q. in the baby, in the woman there is a greater risk of eclampsia, premature birth and placenta previa.
Normally, those who are trying to get pregnant should be able to normalize thyroid values with the use of medications indicated by the endocrinologist and maintain proper control during pregnancy to reduce the chances of complications.
Adapting the diet and resorting to the use of teas prepared with medicinal plants can also help to control the functioning of this gland. Here's what to eat to regulate your thyroid.