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Managing Your Thyroid: A Look at Common Conditions and Treatment Options

It is estimated that over 27 million people in America have an underactive or overactive thyroid condition and in half of these cases, at least half of the conditions remain undiagnosed. Medical experts recommend having a thyroid function test completed every five years to ensure a proper diagnosis of any thyroid condition. This detection will help you manage the condition and still live a normal life.

 

There are several common conditions related to the thyroid. Here is an overview of these conditions and what can be done to manage them effectively:

 

Hyperthyroidism

The thyroid produces hormones in the body and when it begins to overproduce these hormones, a condition of hyperthyroidism will be diagnosed. Symptoms of this condition include steady weight and bouts of feeling excessively warm. Treatment will depend on the symptoms being experienced.

 

Hypothyroidism

The opposite condition where too little hormones are being produced is known as hypothyroidism. This condition is a risk factor for women over 50 years old but is difficult to determine exact symptoms. Testing will be necessary as if left undiagnosed this condition can result in infertility, obesity, and heart disease. Hormone replacement is a typical treatment for this condition to restore the hormonal balance in the body.

 

Thyroiditis

This condition occurs when there is inflammation of your thyroid gland. There are several types of this condition and depending on the cause you will need to seek a diagnosis to determine if you will need anti-inflammatory medications, beta blockers, or hormone replacement therapy.

 

Thyroid Cancer

Thyroid cancer is the most common type of endocrine cancer which requires radiation, possible surgery, radioactive iodine treatment, and hormone replacement treatments for recovery. Thyroid cancer is increasing in frequency among the American population and early detection is vital to recovery.

 

Goiters

When the thyroid gland becomes enlarged, a goiter will form on the front of the neck, a result of lacking iodine in one’s diet. Goiters are not usually painful unless they grow so large to affect breathing or swallowing. Goiters will be recognizable and if they become very big, surgery may be necessary for treatment to prevent other complications.

 

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