How Thyroid Health Impacts Hormones, Fertility and Periods
15 Jun 2020
15 Jun 2020
By Dr. Alaina Gair, ND
Understanding Hyperthyroidism can be complex. Hyperthyroidism is an overactive thyroid disease. Overproduction of thyroid hormone (thyroxine) causes increased metabolism and symptoms like anxiety, unintentional weight loss and irregularity in your heartbeat. It may sound like the better thyroid disease to have since it comes with increased metabolism and weight loss while hypothyroidism comes with weight gain. People with hyperthyroidism often feel very unwell and may struggle with fatigue, sweating, difficulty sleeping, goiter and palpitations.
In addition to a comprehensive medical history and physical exam, your doctor or naturopath will use blood testing of hormones to assess, diagnose and monitor your thyroid health. Testing will show a low thyroid stimulating hormone and elevated T4. To determine if hyperthyroidism is autoimmune, your doctor will also ask for thyroid antibodies and may also assess other autoimmune disease markers. Imaging the thyroid with ultrasound can also be important in determining the cause of hyperthyroidism.
Hyperthyroidism is diagnosed in about 1% of North Americans but is more common in women. Other factors that can put you at higher risk of developing hyperthyroidism are:
There are 3 general treatment approaches for hyperthyroidism and your endocrinologist will recommend the best option for your case.
As you may have gathered by now, hyperthyroidism is more complicated to treat than hypothyroidism. There aren’t any naturopathic approaches to treatment that replace the conventional treatments discussed above. However, where naturopathic medicine often thrives is alongside conventional medicine. Your naturopathic doctor can help you prepare for and recover from surgery, optimize your diet for thyroid function and ensure you are feeling your best during treatment by recommending the most appropriate supplements. If you do develop hypothyroidism following radioactive iodine or surgery, your naturopath can ensure you are converting your synthetic T4 into T3 efficiently and discuss other options for replacement support.
If you’re interested in checking how your thyroid is working or discussing hyperthyroidism, book a virtual initial consultation with Dr. Alaina Gair, ND.
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