Is it Hypothyroid? A Look at Hypothyroid Symptoms
Underactive thyroid is very common. In fact, 1 in 5 women will have it by age 60. But, hypothyroid symptoms are often vague. With that, hypothyroidism gets misdiagnosed or not caught at all. Further, hypothyroid symptoms often mask themselves as unrelated depression or fatigue. This leads to prescriptions for medications that don’t treat the root of the issue.
If you haven’t felt like yourself in a while look at this list of hypothyroid symptoms. We’ve narrowed them down to a list of 4 symptoms that are unique to an underactive thyroid. Is it time to get your thyroid function checked?
One of the most important functions of the thyroid is to control metabolism. So, an underactive thyroid and slower metabolism will cause a domino effect of symptoms across all bodily processes.
Who among us isn’t tired? When we look at the long list of family, friends and work responsibilities it is no wonder the tank runs low regularly. Listen up, ladies: fatigue makes the list of top hypothyroid symptoms. However, because fatigue comes in so many forms, with various causes, the thyroid connection is often overlooked.
Three fatigue-related hypothyroid symptoms that are unique are:
- muscle weakness
- bone and joint stiffness
- irregular periods
If you have one or more of these symptoms it could be an underactive thyroid.
Dry, Coarse Hair
Why would an underactive thyroid influence hair? TSH, Thyroid Stimulating Hormone, plays a large part in metabolism and protein synthesis. When the thyroid does not produce enough TSH these natural processes are strongly affected. Brittle hair that breaks off easily and often. Hair that feels rough to the touch.
Nails that are brittle, flaky or have ridges are signs of an underactive thyroid. Hair and nails are made up of the same protein, called keratin. Because protein synthesis is affected by levels of TSH produced by the thyroid, when those levels are low it will show up in changes in hair and nails. With a busy schedule it is easy to overlook subtle changes in fingernails and toenails. Take a closer look for these signs of flakiness, ridges or brittle nails.
Changes in hair and fingernails are some of the earliest signs of hypothyroidism.
We’ve all known that one person that always must have a sweater. Yes, some people are born intolerant to cold temperatures. However, if an intolerance to cold is something that is a change for you in recent months or years, take note. Again, the thyroid is a big player in metabolism. With that, metabolism helps control body temperature. If your thyroid isn’t functioning at full force, you’ll have a slower metabolism. One of the results will be feeling cold most of the time, colder than everyone else around you.
What’s the Big Deal?
If any of these symptoms have made their way into your life, don’t ignore them. Left untreated, hypothyroidism can result in heart failure or coma. In some cases, debilitating depression and memory loss are the result.
The Good News?
Underactive thyroid is very common and easily diagnosed. Through a simple blood test Dr. Russo will be able to determine your exact thyroid function. Treatments vary based on your individual makeup. Some factors she’ll use to determine the personalized treatment protocol for you? Your current physical condition, medical and family history, age and concurrent medical conditions and medications. With proper treatment, women with hypothyroidism regain their mental and physical balance to reclaim their quality of life and wellbeing.
Subtle changes may be a sign of something bigger: have your thyroid checked today to maintain balance from the inside out.