Thyroid disorders are conditions that affect the functions of the thyroid. The thyroid, which is a butterfly-shaped gland located in front of the neck, makes thyroid hormone that controls the body’s metabolism in many ways, including how fast you burn calories and how fast your heart beats.
Any dysfunction of the thyroid gland can cause serious problems to your body. Most common types of thyroid disorders include:
Hyperthyroidism – when your thyroid gland makes more thyroid hormones than your body requires.
Hypothyroidism – when your thyroid gland does not make enough thyroid hormones.
Goiter – enlargement of the thyroid gland.
Thyroid cancer – a cancer in the butterfly-shaped gland in the neck.
Thyroid nodules – lumps in the thyroid gland
Thyroiditis – swelling or inflammation of the thyroid.
Anyone can get a thyroid disease, but if you’re a woman over 35 years your chances of getting a thyroid disorder are high. Also, women are more likely than men to have thyroid problems, especially right after pregnancy and after menopause.
Symptoms of hypothyroidism include:
Fatigue or feeling exhausted
Poor tolerance to cold temperatures
Loss of appetite
Irregular menstrual periods
Low sex drive
Symptoms of hyperthyroidism include:
Frequent bowel movements
Rapid weight loss
Feeling excessively hot in normal or cold temperatures
If you have any of these symptoms, make sure that you consult a healthcare practitioner for a complete thyroid evaluation.