Your thyroid, one of the largest endocrine glands, greatly influences almost every cell in your body. Aside from regulating your metabolism and weight by controlling the fat-burning process, thyroid hormones are also required for the growth and development in children and in nearly every physiological process in your body. When your thyroid levels are out of balance, so are you. Too much or too little hormone secretion in this gland can spell trouble for your overall health and well-being. In this article by NEX Wellness, we will be talking about the thyroid gland.
What does the Thyroid do?
The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped gland found inside your neck, right under your larynx or voice box. A two-inch long, brownish red, highly vascular gland, it has two lobes located on each side of the windpipe that are both connected by a tissue called the isthmus. A normal thyroid gland weighs somewhere between 20 and 60 grams. Your thyroid is responsible for producing the master metabolism hormones that control every function in your body. It produces three types of hormones:
Hormones secreted by your thyroid interact with all your other hormones, including insulin, cortisol, and sex hormones like estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. The fact that these hormones are all tied together and are in constant communication explains why a less-than-optimal thyroid status is associated with so many widespread symptoms and diseases.
What are the symptoms of an underactive and overactive Thyroid?
Identifying hypothyroidism and its cause is tricky business. Many of the symptoms of hypothyroidism are vague and overlap with other disorders. Physicians often miss a thyroid problem since they rely on just a few traditional tests, leaving other clues undetected. The most sensitive way to find out is to listen to your body. People with a sluggish thyroid usually experience:
- Weight gain
- Rough and scaly skin
- Hair loss
- Sensitivity to cold
- Low basal temperature
Any of these symptoms can be suggestive of an underactive thyroid. The more of these symptoms you have, the higher the likelihood that you have hypothyroidism. Furthermore, if you have someone in your family with any of these conditions, your risks of thyroid problems become higher.
An overactive thyroid secretes too much T4, or Thyroxine, causing some of your body functions to accelerate. Symptoms of hyperthyroidism include:
- Feeling restless, nervous, emotional, irritable, sleeping poorly, and as if you’re always on the go
- Difficulty concentrating
- Frequent bowel movements
- Irregular menstrual periods in women
- Weight loss (or weight gain, in rare cases)
- Rapid, forceful, or irregular heartbeat
- Lack of menstrual periods in women
- Protruding eyes or exophthalmos
There are a number of different ways you can treat an overactive or underactive thyroid. Many treatment options can include natural remedies. For more information about the thyroid, and how thyroid issues can be treated naturally, please feel free to continue browsing through our website. Click here to find our contact information and to fill out our contact form.
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