Thyroid Conditions in Women: Get the Facts
- The thyroid gland is part of the endocrine system, which controls the balance of hormones in the body and sends them to their needed location.
- Women are particularly prone to thyroid conditions, including either a lack or overabundance of thyroid hormones.
- This hormonal imbalance in women can lead to difficulty with the reproductive system, including blocking ovulation, increased morning sickness during pregnancy, early menopause, and even the possibility of infertility.
- If you suffer from early menopause, research the best menopause supplements available to help ease your symptoms.
- The primary thyroid conditions are hypothyroidism, which is an underactive gland, and hyperthyroidism, which is an overactive gland.
Introduction to the Thyroid
The thyroid is one of a web of glands across the body making up the endocrine system. The purpose of this organ is to manage the body’s hormone levels by secreting them in different amounts based on need.
This petite gland at the base of the neck secretes thyroid hormone. It plays a role in controlling the speed of the metabolism, stimulating the production of protein, and elevating the amount of oxygen in the cells.
This process is overseen by the pituitary gland, which releases thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) when there’s an imbalance. An article in the Journal of Endocrinology examined the role of the thyroid hormone in health and disease.
Thyroid Disease and Women’s Health
Women are most prone to developing thyroid conditions, and they have different effects, depending on the stage of life. According to the American Thyroid Association, women are 5 to 8 times more likely than men to be diagnosed with thyroid problems in their lifetime.
A hormonal imbalance in women can lead to several issues because the thyroid is essential for reproductive function. There’s even a possibility that it could cause infertility.
Also, it can lead both puberty and menstruation to develop later than usual. If you have high levels of thyroid hormone, it can affect the heaviness of the period.
According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, if you are experiencing very high or low levels of thyroid hormone it can affect your ability to get pregnant and it can suppress ovulation. Besides, low levels can increase the chance of developing thyroid cysts.
If you have a thyroid condition during pregnancy, you could be at risk of having a miscarriage, stillbirth, or pre-term birth. Besides, it can lead to hemorrhaging following birth. Women with high levels of thyroid hormone may suffer from serious morning sickness.
An overactive thyroid may present similarly to menopause and with similar symptoms, including hot flashes and irritability. This condition can also bring on early menopause. If you are suffering from these symptoms, it’s a good idea to research the best menopause supplements on the market.
Amberen is a menopause supplement, which promises to get rid of unpleasant symptoms like hot flashes, insomnia, and mood swings.
Types of Thyroid Disease
There are primarily 2 main thyroid conditions that affect women – hypothyroidism, which is a condition of too little thyroid hormone, and hyperthyroidism, which is a condition of too much of the hormone.
Initially, the symptoms of hypothyroidism may only include fatigue or perhaps weight gain. As it progresses, according to the Mayo Clinic, it can cause issues like muscle weakness, constipation, dry skin, muscle aches, puffy face, sensitivity to cold, higher cholesterol levels, thinning hair, depression, slowed heart rate, painful joints, a swollen thyroid gland, and irregular periods.
Hyperthyroidism occurs when the thyroid secretes too much of the hormone thyroxine. This leads to issues like weight loss, irregular heartbeat, sensitivity to heat, irritability, hot flashes, menstrual irregularities, insomnia, fatigue, muscle weakness, thinner skin, and brittle hair.
Causes of Thyroid Conditions
The majority of the time, thyroid problems develop as a consequence of another medical condition. Hypothyroidism can be caused by an inflammation of the thyroid gland called thyroiditis, an auto-immune disease by the name of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, an iodine deficiency, or a non-functioning thyroid gland.
Hyperthyroidism can be initiated by a condition called Graves Disease, in which the thyroid is generally overactive and makes too much in the way of hormones. Also, excessive iodine can lead the thyroid to overproduce.
A condition called thyroiditis can cause the thyroid to release stored hormones. You can also develop nodules on the thyroid, which lead to overactivity.
Treatment for Thyroid Conditions
The primary focus of treatment for hypothyroidism is on getting the levels back up to normal with thyroid replacement medication. For hyperthyroidism, there are medications, which can prevent or slow the release of hormones, like anti-thyroid drugs and radioactive iodine.
Also, beta-blockers can diminish symptoms. As an overactive thyroid can cause menopause symptoms, you may also consider an organic supplement like Amberen. This product helps to balance the hormones and eliminate symptoms like mood swings, fatigue, insomnia, and hot flashes
The Final Word
The thyroid gland is a key regulator of the metabolism and the hormones in the body, so it must function effectively. Unfortunately, women are especially likely to develop either an overactive or an underactive thyroid gland.
Hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism can both lead to uncomfortable symptoms, and they can also have a tremendous impact on the reproductive system. For example, they can delay puberty, cause irregular menstruation, bring on early menopause, and possibly even lead to infertility.
Treatments for these conditions involve hormonal replacement for underactive thyroid and primary medications for an overactive thyroid. Besides, there are organic menopause supplements on the market, which can help with some of the symptoms.
If you think you have a thyroid condition, see your doctor immediately to come up with a treatment plan. Make sure you get approval for any additional supplements you use.