The thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped gland located in the neck that produces hormones that are essential for maintaining healthy metabolism. There is a delicate balance maintained through the body’s feedback mechanisms to keep these hormones at the right level for each individual.
Healthy thyroid function is critical for heart, bone, mental and Reproductory health and is especially important for children and during pregnancy for normal growth and brain development.
Nutritional deficiencies; stress, infections, pregnancy and immune imbalances can disrupt the thyroid system.
Thyroid dysfunction is common with 5-10% of the Australians having thyroid disease, and many more having less severe thyroid hormone imbalances. Up to 20% of women will have thyroid imbalances during or after pregnancy and unfortunately thyroid function tests are not routinely done as part of pregnancy care.
Thyroid dysfunction typically falls in to two categories. Underactive (hypothyroidism) and over-active (hyperthyroidism). Underactive thyroid is far more common. Not all thyroid imbalances can be neatly classified as over and underactive.
Symptoms of an under-active thyroid
Cold hands and feet
Joint or muscle pain
Symptoms of an over-active thyroid
When one or more of the above symptoms listed in the boxes are present it is important to have your thyroid health checked.
Careful analysis of thyroid tests can mean that thyroid disease can be picked up before the thyroid markers become grossly altered.
Naturopathic medicine can assist with thyroid conditions through correcting underlying nutritional factors and helping to balance immune function. Frequently thyroid issues stem from autoimmune causes and early treatment provides the best opportunity for correction.
Tasmania has greater levels of thyroid disease than other parts of the world and some of this is because of nutritional factors.
If you are experiencing the symptoms suggestive of thyroid problems schedule an appointment and get the help you need.