Though it can often go undiagnosed for years, a medical condition called hypothyroidism is very common in America, most often affecting women rather than men. Hypothyroidism is actually a type of thyroid disease that occurs when the body fails to produce the level of thyroid hormone it requires to function properly, causing the metabolism to become irregular. As the hormone that controls the metabolism, thyroid issues bear greatly on weight; and for many individuals suffering from hypothyroidism, weight gain and even difficulty losing weight can become a factor. For this reason, unexplained weight gain is one of the common symptoms of a low thyroid function.
The Hype About Hypo
Hypothyroidism causes slow thyroid production, which, in effect, causes the metabolism to slow.
As the metabolism slows, weight gain occurs, as well; but there are a number of other symptoms of a low thyroid that are commonly experienced, including:
- Changes in mood such as depression or irritability
- Loss of memory
- An intolerance to cold
- Skin that is rough, pale, and dry
- Hair that is dry and course
- Hair loss
- Weakened muscles
- Pain and cramping in the muscles
- Changes in menstrual cycles
- Loss of libido
These symptoms of a low thyroid are varying in degree, depending on the individual’s specific hypothyroidism causes as well as the severity of their condition. Two main causes have been identified for thyroid problems such as hypothyroidism, the first of which is related to damaged or dead cells in the thyroid that can occur when the thyroid gland has become inflamed. These cells can no longer produce the proper amount of the thyroid hormone, which leads to hypothyroidism. This is called autoimmune thyroiditis or Hashimoto’s disease and is directly caused by the immune system.
Hypothyroidism can also be caused by medical treatments that have been performed in an effort to correct thyroid conditions such as thyroid cancer, goiters, or a nodule, generally requiring the surgical removal of the thyroid gland, whether in part or in whole. When the remaining mass of thyroid cells cannot meet the body’s needs for thyroid production, hypothyroidism develops. In rare cases, hypothyroidism can be caused by an issue of the pituitary gland, which produces thyroid stimulating hormone or TSH.
The Speed Up
Hypothyroidism treatments naturally depend on the cause for each case, as well as the patient’s own medical history. Treatments for the condition require thyroid hormone replacement therapy, which supplement the body’s own insufficiency to produce thyroid hormone naturally. Most physicians will prescribe synthetic hormones such as Synthroid, and each patient will require proper diagnosis to determine proper dosage to ensure that their body’s needs are being met. For individuals diagnosed with hypothyroidism, a compounding pharmacy or specialty pharmacy with compounding facilities can be of great benefit, as specially trained pharmacy experts will be able to produce tailor-made prescriptions to meet their needs.
Don’t let a health condition slow you down! Consult with the experts at Everwell Specialty Pharmacy today!