The thyroid is a small gland that produces important hormones. It may be tiny, but it plays a vital role in your overall health. Sometimes, the thyroid can produce too much or too little of the hormone, causing health concerns for many women.
Here are a few essential things to know about how your thyroid affects your health and what you should talk about with your doctor.
Where is my Thyroid and What is its Function?
The thyroid is located at the base of your neck. It’s a small gland but the hormones that it produces control many of your body’s essential functions. When it’s functioning properly, your thyroid maintains a proper balance in your metabolism.
When your thyroid isn’t creating hormones in a balanced way, it can lead to nervousness, irregular heartbeat, menstrual irregularities or weight gain. All are health concerns that should be addressed by a doctor.
What’s Thyroid Disease and How is it Diagnosed?
Symptoms of thyroid malfunction vary. It’s common to experience the symptoms of a malfunctioning thyroid growing slowly over a long period of time, so talk with a doctor if you’re experiencing symptoms like menstrual irregularities, fatigue, weight gain, or joint pain.
A thyroid disorder can result from over-production of hormones by the thyroid (hyperthyroidism) and under-production of hormones (hypothyroidism). Development of nodules or lumps on the gland can also be a sign of cancer or other problems.
How can my Doctor Address Thyroid Issues?
A doctor can perform the necessary tests to explore problems related to hormone production by the thyroid. It’s wise to discuss these issues with a doctor the first time you notice them, since early detection is a primary way to effectively treat hormone irregularities.
Your doctor may discuss a thyroid medication with you. There are medications that can mimic the process to create and distribute hormones, and taking them daily can help to regulate the functions of the body.
Some of these medications may need to be taken for many years, and aren’t just a limited dose like a course of antibiotics. An experienced doctor will help you learn about possible side effects and a medication schedule that works for you.
The doctors at Pacific Women’s Center in Eugene are very familiar with thyroid disease and the various testing and treatments required to have it functioning normally. Make an appointment today. If you’re in the Eugene and Springfield area, give us a call and get the tests and support you need to address thyroid concerns effectively.