Know Your Thyroid!

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Today is celebrated as ‘Thyroid Day’ in many parts of the world, and here’s what you need to know about your “Thyroid Gland” a tiny butterfly shaped organ that rests in the front and at the base of your neck.

The thyroid gland is one of the largest endocrine organs (organs that secrete hormones) that produces hormones responsible supporting the numerous activities that are carried out by you to stay healthy and fine!

What are the hormones produced by the Thyroid gland?

The thyroid gland produces two important hormones namely – Triiodothyronine (T3 hormone) and Thyroxine (T4 hormone). The production and regulation of their level is very well-managed by yet another hormone called Thyroid stimulating Hormone (TSH) which is produced by the ‘Master gland’, the “Pituitary gland”.

What are your thyroid hormones responsible for?

Your thyroid hormones are responsible for regulating and managing your –

  • Heart rate
  • Body weight
  • Cholesterol levels
  • Body temperature
  • Menstrual cycles in females
  • Muscle strength
  • Nervous system and many more…

Are there any conditions or disorders that can affect your thyroid gland?

Yes! Your thyroid hormones can fluctuate to extremes and can give rise to two important conditions; these two conditions are Hypothyroidism and Hyperthyroidism.

When your thyroid gland fails to produce enough levels of its hormones is termed as Hypothyroidism. If you are suffering from this low level of thyroid hormone condition, it will be quite visible in your body activities such as,

  • Weight gain
  • Tingling in the fingers
  • Constipation
  • Low heart rate
  • Loss of hair
  • Memory problems
  • Infertility, miscarriages, etc.

When your thyroid gland fails to control and regulate the production of its hormones it gives rise to Hyperthyroidism. This condition can give rise to,

  • Increased heart rate
  • Nervousness & irritability
  • Trembling hands & breathlessness
  • Scanty or complete absence of menses in females
  • Weight loss & weakness, etc.

What is Goiter?

It is the enlargement of the thyroid gland and is caused due to deficiency of iodine, an important element responsible for thyroid hormone production. Presence of goiter can give rise to either of the conditions i.e. Hypothyroidism and Hyperthyroidism.

Can your thyroid gland be affected with Cancer?

Yes, it is one of the most uncommon types of cancers and well manageable at its early stages. It initially starts in the thyroid gland itself and presents itself in the form of nodules or lumps that can be felt in the gland. The cancer is quiet non-invasive and majority of the treatment strategies work well. In extreme cases, total removal of the thyroid gland is also carried out.

How do I check if my thyroid is working fine?

Test the levels of your thyroid hormones! That’s a best way to analyse if the gland is working all fine. Besides that, physical evaluation of the gland for detecting presence of any nodules or lumps is yet another way to evaluate its health.

So this Thyroid Day ensure to get yourself tested and keep thyroid disorders away!

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