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woman getting a thyroid examDo you always feel cold or hot when others are not? Maybe you gain weight even when you eat less or lose weight without cutting back on what you eat. Perhaps you’re feeling very tired, irritable, anxious or depressed; having trouble sleeping or experiencing more menstrual bleeding or fewer and lighter periods.

Any of these symptoms could be caused a problem with your thyroid, a gland located on the front of your neck just below your Adam's apple. It regulates many activities in your body and too much or too little thyroid hormone might be to blame.

Women are more likely than men to have thyroid diseases, especially right after pregnancy and after menopause. One in eight women will experience thyroid problems during her lifetime.

Too much thyroid hormone, or hyperthyroidism speeds up processes in your body. In addition to symptoms like weight loss and always feeling hot, it can also cause an irregular heartbeat and raise your risk for osteoporosis, especially if you’ve gone through menopause or are already at high risk of osteoporosis.

Treatments for hyperthyroidism include medicines to block production of thyroid hormone or ease the effects on your body. In some cases, it’s necessary to perform surgery to remove the thyroid or have radiation treatment to kill the cells that make thyroid hormones.

Too little thyroid hormone is called hypothyroidism. Along with symptoms like weight gain, feeling tired, sad or depressed or always feeling cold, it can also raise your LDL or “bad” cholesterol and increase the risk of heart disease.

Hypothyroidism is treated with medicine that gives you a man-made form of the hormone to supplement what your thyroid makes. You will likely need to take thyroid hormone pills for the rest of your life.

Your health care professional can diagnose thyroid problems with a simple physical exam followed by testing of your hormone levels. Don’t hesitate to ask if you’re experiencing problems that could be caused by your thyroid.

Northline Women's Health Center Locations:

15675 Northline Road

Southgate, MI 48195

(734) 282-3600
(734) 282-3603 - Fax

23050 West Road, Suite 210

Brownstown Twp., MI 48183

(734) 362-7000
(734) 362-7077 - Fax