- Fatigue and Weakness
- Low Body Temperature
- Dry and coarse skin
- Hair loss
- Cold hands and feet
- Weight gain
- Poor memory/forgetful
- Nervousness and tremors
- Immune system problems
- Heavy menstrual periods
Modern conventional thyroid assessment is often considerably lacking in determining if a patient has a healthy thyroid function. If you have all the symptoms but do not have positive lab findings then it is time to get a 2nd opinion from a doctor that deals with this disease on a regular basis.
Understanding and Diagnosing Hypothyroidism
Also known as an underactive thyroid, hypothyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland does not manufacture or release sufficient amount of thyroxine. As a result, many of the functions of the body and mind can suffer. Depending on the severity of the insufficient supply of thyroxine, an individual may experience minor symptoms or have to deal with symptoms that affect the quality of life. Fortunately, there are ways to treat the condition and help restore a sense of mental balance.
What are the Common Symptoms of Hypothyroidism?
The improper function of the thyroid gland will affect the function of just about every part of the body. This includes having a negative impact on the function of the nervous system and the regulation of key neurotransmitters that help maintain mental and emotional balance. While not every patient will experience all the symptoms associated with the condition, it is not unusual for an individual to suffer with several different signs of an underactive thyroid.
Physical changes are very common with this condition. Patients are likely to experience increasing levels of fatigue, even after enjoying a good night’s sleep. Along with the fatigue, a sense of feeling weak is also likely to manifest. Over time, sleep will become more elusive, triggering insomnia that may manifest as an inability to get to sleep or frequently waking up during the night.
The patient is also likely to notice other changes. For example, the feet and hands are likely to feel cold more often. The hair may become somewhat brittle and fall out more often. Skin will begin to lose some of its natural moisture and become somewhat dry and rough to the touch. There is even the possibility that the patient will notice that his or her body temperature is a little lower than usual.
If not treated, more severe symptoms may emerge. These include such physical ailments as constipation or nervous tremors that seem to appear out of nowhere. Women may also notice a change in their menstrual cycles, making the periods more intense and painful. Since the function of the immune system is affected, the patient may also be more likely to catch colds with greater ease.
In terms of mental and emotional function, hypothyroidism can trigger bouts of moderate to deep depression. At the same time, the development of anxiety disorders punctuated by panic attacks may also occur. Extreme irritability as well as difficulty concentrated may become very pronounced.
Beware of Myths About Hypothyroidism
One of the more common myths about hypothyroidism is that the condition can be easily diagnosed using bloodwork. That is not necessarily the case. Currently, the conventional approach to identifying low activity with the thyroid gland involves taking a blood sample and measuring the presence of two hormones. The first is known as the thyroid stimulating hormone or TSH while the other is thyroxine or T4.
Using the blood sample, it is determined if these two hormones are present in what is considered acceptable amounts. If they are not, then the individual is diagnosed with a thyroid problem. Assuming the levels are within what modern medicine considers acceptable limits, the physician is likely to rule out a thyroid issue and pursue other possible origins for the patient’s symptoms. Unfortunately, this can mean that the patient continues to suffer needlessly while other possibilities are examined.
How Standard Medicine Has Fallen Short
The problem with the current approach for diagnosing hypothyroidism is that having levels of TSH and T4 that are normal by currently accepted standards does not necessarily mean the individual is not experiencing hypothyroidism. More information is needed before it is possible to rule out the condition as the source of the patient’s health issues.
Unfortunately, not all physicians will take the time to administer additional testing that digs a little deeper into the function of the thyroid. This leaves the patient with the need to take a variety of medications in order to manage some of the symptoms and dealing with the side effects caused by those medications.
There are a number of considerations that should be addressed. In general hormones tend to work together and have many effects upon each other.
Environmental considerations at times can block receptor function and lead to low T3 levels/hypothyroidism.
Anemia and other conditions can express as fatigue and need to be considered.
Estrogen dominance this is where there is more estrogen then progesterone-this is typical of perimenopausal.
Low Testosterone: can mimic many of the symptoms of hypothyroid.
Altered Adrenal Function: responsible for the stress response as well as metabolism and energy. Depleted hormones such as
Cortisol and DHEA: can increase the demands upon the thyroid.
Heavy Metals may be blocking the conversion of T4 to T3-inactive to active hormone.
Performing an At Home Test for Low Thyroid Function
It is possible to conduct a simple test at home to determine if hypothyroidism is indicated, even if the balance of TSH and T4 are considered within normal limits. All the patient needs to conduct the test is a thermometer and a little patience.
Before retiring at night, shake the thermometer until the temperature reading is below 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the thermometer on the nightstand so that it will be easy to retrieve when you wake up.
Before getting out of bed in the morning, take your temperature. You can accomplish this by placing the thermometer under your armpit and holding it in position for a slow count of ten. Make sure to record the reading immediately. Repeat this process for three consecutive mornings. If you find that the readings are all under 97.6 Fahrenheit, there is a good chance that you have a problem with the function of your thyroid.
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I think anyone who comes to Dr. Dubroff is lucky. He’s been excellent for me. I was dealing with thinning hair, weight gain, failing memory, and dry skin. Dr Dubroff suspected suboptimal thyroid and starting treating me for that. My symptoms resolved! Later I developed severe skin issues unresolved with topical cortisone. Dr Dubroff researched and prescribed a homeopathic treatment. The results were absolutely magical. I’ve had two problems that I truly believed would never be resolved. I whole heartedly recommend Dr. Dubroff for knowledge and his medical abilities.