Hypothyroidism – How it effects !
Hypothyroidism Causes and Symptoms
Hypothyroidism is one of the common thyroid disorders that have been known to affect more of the population as compared to any other hormonal imbalance. It is known to occur, when thyroid gland is insufficient to produce normal amount of thyroid hormone.
The associated signs and symptoms are connected with the causes of hypothyroidism and are dependent upon the severity of the hormonal insufficiency in the body.
However, in the initial stage of disease, symptoms are barely noticed. But with the advancement of disease, the symptoms become more visible and loud. It happens due to lowering down of the metabolic rate in the individuals, suffering from hypothyroidism.
The causes of hypothyroidism are varied and may result in introducing a wide range of symptoms. Few of the common symptoms are:
- Fatigue: It occurs due to alteration in the metabolic rate of an individual, suffering from hypothyroidism.
- Increased cold intolerance: The disturbed metabolic regulation in the body can result in increased sensitivity to the cooler environment outside. This could result in hypersensitivity to the mild cold temperature also.
- Weight gain and Constipation: The hormonal disturbance creates a higher alteration in metabolic rate. The digestive process of body too gets affected. This result in events of constipation and weight gain.
- Puffy face & swelling in eyes: The swelling in eyes is one of the visible symptoms that occur due to presence of any of the cause of hypothyroidism.
- Hoarseness: The voice pitch gets affected because of swelling of thyroid gland. It might results in the increased hoarseness in the voice.
- Muscle weakness & Joint aches: There has been series of muscular weakness and joint aches that are associated with the onset and progress of hypothyroidism.
- Heavier and prolonged menstrual cycle: This is also connected with the progression of hypothyroidism in the body. Women with hypothyroidism often complaints of heavy bleeding and prolonged cycle.
- Depression & Impaired memory: It includes the events of anxiety, nervousness and irritability that further results in introduction of depression. With hypothyroidism, the mental health of the body also gets on stake as individuals are more likely to get poor or impaired memory with the slow progression of the disease.
- Thinning hair and eyebrows: The last 1/3 part of the eyebrows gets thin with the presence of hypothyroidism.
- Bradycardia: Bradycardia is termed as slower heart rate that occurs due to impaired hormonal regulation of the thyroid gland. If Bradycardia occurs persistently, one should seek medical attention at the earliest.
In short, we can state that due to inappropriate production of thyroid hormone in the body, the chemical reactions of the body gets upset. To know more about how it occurs, one should be first familiar with the different causes of hypothyroidism.
- Autoimmune Disease: Out of the several causes of hypothyroidism, the presence of autoimmune disorder is one of the major causes. Most popularly, people who are suffering from Hashimoto’s thyroiditis are known to have hypothyroidism.
The autoimmune disorder occurs when the immune system of the body produces unnecessary antibodies. These antibodies attack the body’s own tissues. Sometimes, the associated tissues of thyroid gland also gets damaged and results in onset of hypothyroidism. The affected thyroid gland gets difficulty in secreting normal levels of thyroid hormone and become one of the causes of hypothyroidism.
- Treatment for Hyperthyroidism: Strange but true. In many of the cases, it has been noticed that individuals who are suffering from hyperthyroidism can get affected with hypothyroidism. The medications that are targeted to reduce the high level of thyroid hormone in body may interfere with the normal level of thyroid hormone. It could become one of the permanent causes of hypothyroidism.
- Thyroid Surgery: There are after effects of the thyroid surgery that could interfere with the normal production of thyroid hormone. Thyroid surgeries are considered as one of the causes of hyperthyroidism that could not be reversed.
- Radiation Therapy: In medical conditions, where the individual is suffering from thyroid cancer, radiation to the affected part is advised. The counter effects of radiations given to the head and neck could result in abnormal functioning of thyroid gland. It could be one of the causes of hypothyroidism.
- Medications: Many of the medications are responsible to contribute for the causes of hypothyroidism. Medicines such as Lithium can provoke the improper functioning of thyroid gland. It is advised to always consult a physician before taking any of such medications.
- Congenital Disease: Congenital diseases are birth defects that occur in few of the population. In many of the congenital diseases, there is a defective thyroid gland or the gland is absent. It is one of the causes of hypothyroidism. Due to abnormality of the thyroid gland, the required amount of the thyroid is not produced and can become one of the causes of hypothyroidism.
- Pituitary Disorder: It is one of the rare causes of hypothyroidism that is identified by the failure of pituitary gland to produce required amounts of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) and leads to the low production of thyroid hormone.
- Pregnancy: In and after pregnancy, it has been reported that postpartum hypothyroidism may occur. It happens when the antibodies inside the body starts damaging the own thyroid gland. The untreated prolonged hypothyroidism may cause miscarriage, premature delivery or preeclampsia. This can create a major blood pressure issues in last trimester. Hence, few of the pregnancy are considered as one of the major cause of hypothyroidism.
- Iodine Deficiency: Iodine is one of the essential components that are required for the production of thyroid hormones. The deficiency in the iodine can cause serious impact on the production of thyroid hormone. It is considered as one of the causes of hypothyroidism.
Causes of Hypothyroidism in Females
There are different causes of hypothyroidism in females that can initiate the symptoms at various levels. The disease occurs due to hormonal imbalance in the body for a prolonged time.
Following are the main causes of hypothyroidism in females:
- Goiter: It is a condition that occurs as a result of constant stimulation of thyroid hormone that creates the inflammation of the thyroid gland. The enlargement of thyroid gland is termed as goiter. It is one of the major causes of hypothyroidism in females.
- Heart problems: Heart regulation is important to make the whole body function properly. The improper functioning of heart can seriously impact the hormonal level of the body. One such impact is on the thyroid gland. It may be one of the causes of hypothyroidism in woman and can result in serious outcomes.
- Mental Health issues: The mental disturbance due to misalignment of hormonal balance in body can impact on the production rate of thyroid gland. This could be one of the probable causes of hypothyroidism in females.
- Peripheral Neuropathy: Peripheral neuropathy is defined as a medical condition which can cause damage to the peripheral nerves. These nerves are responsible to carry information to and fro from brain and spinal cord.
Peripheral neuropathy may cause serious hindrance to the production of thyroid secretion inside the gland. It is more common causes of hypothyroidism in females that can further cause swelling in distal proximities of the body.
- Myxedema: It could be defined as a condition that could result in serious physiological decompensation in the body. This can cause imbalance in hormonal production in the body and could be considered as one of the prime causes of hypothyroidism in females.
- Infertility: The prolonged infertility can be dangerous and can provoke the derangements of thyroid hormones in the gland. Hence, it is considered as one of the causes of hypothyroidism in females.
- Birth defects: Certain birth defects are known to occur in a group of population. The absence or improper presence of thyroid gland might reflect the incapability of thyroid gland to produce sufficient amounts of thyroid hormone. Hence, are considered one among the different causes of hypothyroidism in females.
All these factors or medical conditions may contribute in provoking the onset of hypothyroidism and could be considered as different causes of hypothyroidism.
Causes of Hypothyroidism in Adults
Hypothyroidism as described earlier is one of the most common thyroid disorder. It occurs due to insufficiency of production of thyroid hormone inside the body. There are many reasons that may be characterized as common causes of hypothyroidism in adults. Few of them are:
- Autoimmune disease: The development of a particular inflammatory disorder can be considered as one of the major causes of hypothyroidism.
- Growing Age: With the growing age, the normal functioning of thyroid gland gets impacted and it might result in the depletion of production of thyroid hormone and could become one of the causes of hypothyroidism in adults.
- Thyroid Injury: The external damage to the anatomical structure of thyroid gland may hamper the physiological action of thyroid gland. This damage could end up in creating imbalance in the production of thyroid hormone inside the body. Hence, resulting to be one of the prime causes of hypothyroidism in adults.
- Thyroid Cancer: The cancerous growth of thyroid cells or tissues might impact the normal production of thyroid hormone in the thyroid gland. It might result in the occurrence of one of the causes of hypothyroidism in adults.
- Prolonged medication for Hyperthyroidism: Hyperthyroidism is a medical condition where there is excessive production of thyroid hormone inside the body. Anti –thyroid medications are prescribed to suppress the excessive production of thyroid. However, prolonged exposure to such medicines might interfere with the normal production of thyroid hormone. It might become one of the causes of hypothyroidism in adults.
All these causes of hypothyroidism may individually or together responsible for the hormonal imbalance in the body.
Most common cause of Hypothyroidism
Earlier, we have discussed about the different causes of hypothyroidism in adults and females. Out of the many causes, have you ever wondered, which one of them is the most common cause of hypothyroidism in an individual?
The answer is “Hashimoto’s thyroiditis”. Yes, this autoimmune disorder is one among the major causes of hypothyroidism in adults. It is a form of thyroid inflammation that occurs due to auto defense mechanism inside the bodies. The antibodies within the body are responsible for creating damage to the associated tissues of thyroid gland.
The connected symptoms and progression of the disease can be identified as inflammation in thyroid gland that occurs due to auto response of antibodies. This attack can create gradual decay of the thyroid tissues, hence interfering with the normal level of production of thyroid hormone inside the gland.
As a consequence of the damage, the gland produces insufficient amount of hormone and become one of the causes of hypothyroidism in adults.
Causes of Hypothyroidism in Children
As a matter of fact, this hormonal imbalance might occur at a very young age too. There are many listed causes of hypothyroidism that can affect the childhood. Here are few of the reasons that might be responsible for hypothyroidism.
- Positive family history: It has been seen that children who have a positive running history of thyroid imbalance are most likely to be suffered with hypothyroidism. The family history is one of the causes of hypothyroidism that can create serious outcomes of hormonal imbalance in a child.
- Auto- immune conditions: Disorders such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, Grave’s disease are autoimmune disorders that are commonly found in children. These disorders are one of the causes of hypothyroidism that can lead to sudden onset of symptoms in children. It all occurs due to defensive action of antibodies on thyroid gland.
- Insufficient intake of Iodine in diet: If your child is not taking sufficient amount of iodine in his diet, he is most likely to get exposure of hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism is one of the conditions that occur due to abnormal levels of thyroid hormones.
One should keep a strict monitoring of iodine level in your child’s diet. It might be one among the major causes of hypothyroidism in children.
- Non- functional thyroid: It occurs most commonly in congenital defects of body that are diagnosed soon after the birth. There are cases where the cause is idiopathic but it has been seen that the absence of thyroid gland might become one of the causes of hypothyroidism in children.
- Improper treatment of mother’s thyroid disease: If a mother has been diagnosed with the presence of thyroid disease and she was not given proper treatment to cure the disease. Her new born might have the probability of suffering from hypothyroidism.
The mother’s untreated thyroid in pregnancy could be one of the prime causes of hypothyroidism in children.
- Abnormal Pituitary Gland: Pituitary gland is responsible to maintain the secretion levels of thyroid inside the body. The abnormal functioning of pituitary gland may interfere with the normal thyroid production inside the body. It might be one of the causes of hypothyroidism in children.
These above mentioned reasons are most likely be one of the influential causes of hypothyroidism in children.
Causes of Hypothyroidism in Cats
Hypothyroidism in cats is one of the common hormonal disorders that are found in a larger population of cats. There are several causes of hyperthyroidism in cats that has been responsible for creating the imbalance of thyroid hormone. Here is the list of few of the major causes of hypothyroidism in cats:
- Exposure to contaminated environment: There are cases that have been documented to create hypothyroidism in cats. Industrial chemical such as Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PDE) is one of the hazardous chemical that can cause the dysfunction of thyroid gland and causes the hypothyroidism.
- Bisphenol –a (BPA): This is one of the other causes of hypothyroidism that is known to create hormonal disturbance in cats.
- Iodine insufficiency: Similar to human beings, iodine concentration is required in cats also. The insufficient amount of iodine in diet can be one of the causes of hypothyroidism in cats.
- Older age: The functioning of thyroid glands gets decreased with the growing age in cats also. It has been seen that the probability of getting hypothyroidism in cats is certainly high in older age.
Can too much of Iodine cause Hypothyroidism
We have always been listening to the fact that the deficiency of iodine is one of the responsible causes of hypothyroidism. But have you ever wondered that the excessive amount of iodine could be as harmful as the insufficient amount is!
Yes, you have read it right. The excessive amount of iodine may be one of the several causes of hypothyroidism. Iodine is a micronutrient that is solely responsible for the production of thyroid hormones in the body. However, in certain conditions it has been documented that high level of iodine can be equally responsible as the causes of hypothyroidism in an individual.
The underlying mechanism is however not clear but many of the cases have reported that higher level of iodine could be one of the causes of hypothyroidism. The excessive presence of iodine may hamper the normal functioning of thyroid gland and can result in less production of thyroid hormone in the body. This could lead to initiation of hypothyroidism in an individual.
Can stress cause hypothyroidism
Stress has become the other synonym of life. We are dealing with different forms of stress every day in our lives. Have you ever thought that this stress could be one of the probable causes of hypothyroidism in your body?
Thyroid gland is one of the delicate glands in our body. The inter-relationship between stress and blood sugar imbalance and poor gut health is already proved. The increasing stress has been capable of doing a lot of damage to our body in different forms and has become one of the risky causes of hypothyroidism in today’s life.
The stress level in the body is responsible for creating many of the symptoms in the body. Few of the signs and symptoms of stress are:
- Headaches: The frequent series of headaches are also associated with the increase level of stress.
- Decreased immunity: Stress is also responsible for creating the low level of immunity system inside the body.
- Disturbed sleep patterns: The interrupted patterns of sleep are also one of the causes of hypothyroidism. These sleep patterns occurs due to high level of stress.
- Mood swings: With the high level of stress in mind, there are chances of getting different mood swings. The mood swings occur due to extreme disturbance in the mental health.
- Sugar and caffeine cravings: Higher stress can lead to increase cravings for sugar and caffeine.
- Irritability: Another visible symptom of stress is increased irritability among the individuals.
Five ways that shows how can stress cause hypothyroidism:
The most common of the causes of hypothyroidism are documented below and are found to be associated with high levels of stress. Before reading about the connection between the two, one should be well aware of the adrenal glands and its association with thyroid hormone.
The adrenal glands are one of the most vital glands that are required for the well being of your life. They both play a huge role in the production of the hormones that are particularly required to deal with the stress level.
These glands are also known as endocrine glands and are known to be production house for a variety of hormones. It includes adrenaline and steroids. Both of them are found above the kidneys.
Below is the description how adrenal gland are responsible for creating hypothyroidism in individuals.
Adrenal stress disrupts HPA axis and becomes a cause of hypothyroidism
HPA axis is also known as hypothalamic – pituitary –adrenal (HPA) axis. It is defined as a complex network of interactions that occurs between the hypothalamus, pituitary and the adrenal glands that are known to be responsible for regulation of things such as temperature, digestion, immune system, mood and energy.
The stress on adrenal can reduce the level of HPA axis. The reduction in HPA axis can further add to reduction in the conversion of TSH, T3, T4 and results in slower uptake of thyroid hormone.
This can ultimately become the causes of hypothyroidism and can create the hormonal insufficiency.
Adrenal stress reduces conversion of T4 to T3
We have already discussed that reduction of HPA axis and its correlation with hypothyroidism. It has been reported that the high level of stress can create adrenal stress. This stress could be one of the possible reasons for reduction of conversion rate of thyroid hormone.
The slower conversion rate of T4 into T3 could interfere with the regulation of thyroid hormone in the body. The reduction in conversion may create deficiency of thyroid hormone in the body and can become one of the causes of hypothyroidism
Adrenal stress promotes autoimmunity by weakening immune barriers
The other important role of adrenal stress in creating hypothyroidism is provoking the lesser functioning of the immune system of the body.
GI tract, lungs, blood – brain barrier are few of the primary immune barriers in the body. These barriers are helpful in escaping the invasion of foreign particles inside the body.
With the initiation of adrenal stress, the autoimmune barriers of the body get weak. This weakness can further lead to infections and other foreign particles attack. This can initiate the lower production of thyroid hormone inside the body.
This could be one of the probable causes of hypothyroidism in an individual.
Adrenal stress causes thyroid hormone resistance thus causes Hypothyroidism
The higher level of stress on thyroid can create a sudden hindrance to the thyroid receptor site sensitivity. With the adrenal stress, inflammatory cytokines are activated.
These cytokines are responsible for decelerating the thyroid receptor site sensitivity. Hence, offering a hindrance to the free absorption of thyroid in the body. This is one of the causes of hypothyroidism.
In short, the high level of stress leads to suppress the hormonal activity inside the body.
Adrenal stress causes hormonal imbalances
When the level of stress in adrenal gland gets raised, it releases a stress hormone that is known as cortisol. Prolonged production of cortisol can be a reason for reduction in functions of various vital organs of the body.
The presence of cortisol hormone for a longer time can also interfere with the production of thyroid hormone inside the body.
Hence, from above points, we can conclude that stress has a linear relationship with thyroid imbalance in the body. It is one of the significant causes of hypothyroidism in an individual.
Does Hypothyroidism cause Weight loss
This is one of the most frequent asked questions by the individuals who are suffering from hypothyroidism.
Hypothyroidism is identified as one of the most common encountered hormonal imbalance by the individuals. There are many evidence based events that supports the fact that hypothyroidism is related to weight changes in an individual.
Weight losing is one of the physiological actions that require the burning of calories inside the body. If an individual is having any abnormality in its normal physiological function, it can lead to excessive weight shifts that are not considered into normal range.
Hypothyroidism is known to be responsible for losing weight in an individual. It occurs because of the low level of T3 hormone in the body. T3 is popularly known as active thyroid hormone in the body.
The lower presence of T3 leads to imbalance in proper regulatory systems of the body. The alteration in T3 level may be one of the causes of hypothyroidism and may result in poor weight management in an individual.
From above information, we can conclude that the presence of hypothyroidism in an individual may interfere with the weight managements in an individual.
Does Hypothyroidism cause Weight gain
Thyroid has a great influence on the mechanism of the body. Hormones are responsible to regulate heart rate, maintain healthy skin and a vital role in metabolic activities.
In case, an individual is suffering from hypothyroidism, the level of energy gets drained out so quickly. It may result in slower rate of metabolic activities inside the body. This slower down of mechanism might result in deposition of calories. these unprocessed calories further contributes to increase in weight of an individual suffering from hypothyroidism.
Many researches and cases have been registered to know in more detail about the associated risk of getting obese with hypothyroidism. It has been noticed that individuals who are suffering from hypothyroidism may develop certain symptoms such as joint ache, fatigue, anxiety and lethargy.
In addition to the presence of these symptoms, the metabolic rate of the body further decelerates. It occurs due to less or no activities of body as a result of the causes of hypothyroidism. Hence,, these leads to further increase in the body weight.
The other possible reason for the weight gain in hypothyroidism is lower rate of metabolic activities in the body. As we all know, that hypothyroidism may cause the interrupted metabolic performance in the body and could hamper the normal processes of regulation.
This hormonal disturbance might add up the burden on the digestive process of the body and could end up in gaining excessive weight.
The excessive weight gain may act as a hindrance to the normal activity in the gland. It can also behave as a medium to offer signals for low levels of thyroid hormones. This condition can also be one of the influential causes of hypothyroidism in individuals. It could be directly correlated with the abnormal weight gain in individuals.
All these causes of hypothyroidism may play an active or indirect role in creating the accumulation of excessive fat deposition in an individual, suffering from hypothyroidism.
From the above information, we may conclude that hypothyroidism is one of the most likely case of excessive weight gain in an individual.
There is a very beautiful proverb that states that ,” Prevention is better than cure”! The same implies in case of hypothyroidism. If you have any of the above mentioned predisposing factors that could probably trigger thyroid imbalance, you should immediately consult a doctor.
It is not necessary always to get a consultation only when you are suffering from disease. Pre- consultation prior to introduction of any disease is a wise decision and step.
Another recommended tip to keep yourself away from the disease is to identify the causes of hypothyroidism in well advance. This helps in making your health more healthy and smooth.
Hence, the golden rule of prevention of hypothyroidism is to know your thyroid level and to stay updated and aware with any probable associated risk of the disease in well advance.