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The Facts About Your Thyroid

Do you know just how important your thyroid, that little butterfly-shaped gland in your neck, really is? The thyroid helps each organ work by producing hormones that your body needs to use energy, stay warm and keep the brain, heart, muscles and other organs functioning properly. Since these hormones control many bodily functions, it comes as no surprise that an underactive thyroid could cause serious health concerns.1

Hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid, refers to a condition in which the thyroid gland is not producing enough thyroid hormones. When this occurs, the thyroid functions at a reduced speed and becomes sluggish. The lack of hormones slows down the body’s metabolic functions and can cause you pain and suffering. But with proper medication, hypothyroidism can be treated safely and naturally.

Think of the thyroid like a car engine

A healthy thyroid hums along with a steady, even purr. You don’t think about it too much; it just works. But a glitch in thyroid function can cause multiple changes in the way the body functions, just as a misfiring engine can hinder – or disable completely – the driving performance of a car.2

Do you have hypothyroidism?

Hypothyroidism can affect your physical body, your mood and even the way you think, look and sound. Because the thyroid controls your body’s metabolism and its ability to use energy, you can experience a wide range of symptoms if you are suffering from thyroid disease. Experiencing one or more of these signs and symptoms does not automatically mean you have thyroid disease. Some hypothyroidism sufferers experience only a few of these symptoms, while others may not experience any symptoms at all.

Some of the symptoms and signs associated with hypothyroidism are:

Common hypothyroidism symptoms

  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Feeling cold
  • Headache
  • Muscle and joint pain
  • Weight gain, despite diminished appetite
  • Constipation
  • Dry skin
  • Coarse hair, hair loss
  • Hoarse voice
  • Depression
  • Menstrual irregularities
  • Milky discharge from breasts (galactorrhea)

Please note, this list of symptoms is not complete. While we make every effort to provide accurate, up-to-date and useful information, this website is not intended as a substitute for a clinical evaluation or the medical advice of a qualified doctor or healthcare professional. If you think you may have hypothyroidism or you have any questions about your symptoms, please seek the care of a qualified healthcare professional. Your doctor can prescribe the proper course of treatment after a thorough and complete examination.

Blood Tests

There are a few blood tests that you can take to measure your thyroid hormone levels and diagnose thyroid conditions:

  • Free Thyroxine (T4) – FT4 test - This test measures the levels of T4 thyroxine in your blood, with a low level indicating hypothyroidism.
  • Free Triiodothyronine (T3) – FT3 test - This test measures the levels of T3 thyroxine in your blood, with a low level indicating hypothyroidism.
  • Thyroid Antibody Test – Positive levels of thyroid peroxidase and thyroglobulin, the antibodies that attack the thyroid gland, in the blood can indicate hypothyroidism.
  • TSH Test - Doctors often rely on the TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone) blood test for diagnosing hypothyroidism, because thyroid hormone levels can still be in the normal range during the early stages of hypothyroidism.

Treating Hypothyroidism

WP Thyroid and Nature-Throid are natural hypothyroid treatments formulated to mimic your body’s physiological processes. Both medications have been trusted for more than 80 years by physicians and patients alike and are hypoallergenic, free of gluten, corn and artificial colors and flavors.

Since WP Thyroid and Nature-Throid contain thyroid USP (desiccated porcine thyroid), they adhere to strict United States Pharmacopeia (USP) monographs for potency and consistency and have guaranteed T4 and T3 hormone levels. Every batch is tested to ensure it meets or exceeds these USP standards. While the industry allows for a monograph discrepancy of +/-10% between T4 and T3, WP Thyroid and Nature-Throid are not released outside of +/-2%. WP Thyroid and Nature-Throid also comply with all USP pharmaceutical guidelines and FDA manufacturing and processing. Neither medication has ever been voluntarily or FDA recalled for inconsistent hormone levels.

Pregnancy And Hypothyroidism

What to expect from hypothyroidism

It is not uncommon for women to suffer from hypothyroidism during pregnancy. Some women enter the pregnancy with the condition, while others develop it during or after pregnancy. If you are planning a pregnancy, talk to your doctor about the potential effects of hypothyroidism.

Mother and baby: effects of hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism can lead to complications for mother and baby during and after the pregnancy, including preeclampsia, miscarriage, low birth weight, stillbirth, and decreased motor function and slower motor development.

Entering pregnancy with hypothyroidism

If you enter a pregnancy with hypothyroidism, talk to your doctor about re-testing your levels as your dose may increase by nearly 50 percent during pregnancy to account for the baby’s needs. Your baby may need additional thyroid hormone until its thyroid is fully grown, which typically occurs at about 12 weeks of gestation. After birth, you will most likely return to your pre-pregnancy medication dose immediately or within a few weeks to a few months.

Symptoms while pregnant

Because your thyroid hormones will be in greater demand while pregnant, immediately let your doctor know about any symptoms you are experiencing, including exhaustion and fatigue, cold intolerance, memory problems, constipation or joint pain. Though these are common pregnancy-related symptoms, they can also signal the onset of hypothyroidism. Your doctor can run additional tests to rule out or diagnose the presence of a thyroid condition.

Treatment while pregnant

Treatment for hypothyroidism for pregnant and non-pregnant women is the same. However, thyroid hormone levels can fluctuate during pregnancy and may need to be monitored more closely. Medication is often adjusted periodically as TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone) levels are tested throughout the pregnancy. Your doctor will determine the best course of treatment for you and your pregnancy.

Source: American Thyroid Association. (2017). Thyroid Disease and Pregnancy. Retrieved from http://www.thyroid.org/thyroid-disease-pregnancy/

1. American Thyroid Association. (2017). Hypothyroidism Booklet for Patients and Their Families. Retrieved from http://www.thyroid.org/wp-content/uploads/patients/brochures/Hypothyroidism_web_booklet.pdf

2. Balint, V.L. (2011, July). What Every Woman Should Know About Thyroid Disease. Raising Arizona Kids. 16-17.

3. Source: http://umm.edu/health/medical/reports/articles/hypothyroidism

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