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What is Hypothyroidism or under active thyroid? What are its Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Thyroid is a butterfly shaped gland at the base of your neck and below Adam’s Apple and close to the collar bones. The wings are connected in the middle and spread on each side of wind pipe. Thyroid gland controls the rate at which every cell, tissue and organ in the body functions from your muscles, bones and skin to your digestive tract, brain, heart and more.

Thyroid secretes hormones T3 which is called thyroxine and T4 which is called triidothyronine. They control how fast and efficiently cells convert nutrients into energy. Thyroid gland is controlled by pituitary gland and it produces a thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) and it pushes the thyroid gland to produce thyroid hormones in balancing quantities.

Hypothyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland produces less T3 and T4 and the main reason is that the immune system attacks and destroys the thyroid gland. TSH is released by pituitary gland and it informs the thyroid gland to step up production. The gland enlarges and the body functions slow down. Women especially are affected more.

Symptoms of Hypothyroidism
– Feeling cold.
– Feeling drowsy, lethargic and exhausted.
– Poor memory.
– Depression.
– Anemia.
– Heavy menstrual flow.
– Infertility.
– Weight gain and bloating.
– Constipation.
– Hair thinning.
– Muscle cramps.
– Husky voice.

Causes of Hypothyroidism
– Thyroid surgery in which the gland is removed or treated.
– Iodine deficiency.
– Medication used to treat bipolar disease.
– Infections like viral and bacterial can harm the gland temporarily.
– Congenital in which you are born with thyroid hormone deficiency.

Treatment of Hypothyroidism
Diagnosis can be done with a blood test of thyroid hormones T3, T4 and TSH.
– Replacing the thyroid hormone to normalize levels.
– Symptoms get cured within couple of months.
– Left untreated, it can cause depression, heart failure and coma.

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