Thyroid gland disorders include changes in its structure as well as disorders of thyroid gland function. Benign pseudocysts, struma or tissue changes may all appear on the thyroid gland.
What you probably did not know about the thyroid gland
The thyroid gland falls under the classification of endocrine glands. It is located on the sides of the larynx and in the upper part of the trachea. The functional aspect is ensured through small, spherical sacks referred to as follicles. The sacks are composed of a wall from epithelial cells and filled with colloid within which the main thyroid gland hormones tyroxine and triiodothyronine are located. The gland also contains the a third hormone known as calcitonin which can be found in the interstitial ligaments between follicles. One of the main functions of the thyroid gland rests in increasing the metabolic activity of cells and metabolizing carbohydrates. It also has an impact on the circulatory system, increasing the central nervous system’s activity and development.
Overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism)
For those suffering from this disease, the thyroid gland produces a significantly greater amount of thyroid hormones and is accompanied by increased peripheral tissue reaction. The most common type of problem doctors encounter is the Graves-Basedow disease which occurs at a young age primarily with women. Patients suffer from excessive thyroid gland activity and they can appear more agitated, nervous, uneasy and have difficulties sleeping. Symptoms of this disease can also include mild hand tremors, diarrhea and osteoporosis. Patients suffer from heart palpitations, sweat more, appear agitated and suffer from intolerance to heat. With the help of laboratory examinations, the doctor is able to determine the hormone levels and thyroid antibodies from a blood sample.
Underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism)
Patients can fall ill for several reasons which can include hereditary predispositions, post-operative conditions, radiation to the neck area and lack of iodine (uncommon in the Czech Republic). As a result of insufficient thyroid gland function, the person may feel tired, clumsy, suffer from constipation and cold shivers. The patient’s body does not work at full capacity and they can often be forgetful and prone to depression. Their muscles and joints ache and their lower limbs can swell. Their skin can also appear to be visibly dry.
Quality examinations will ensure early diagnosis
Treatment is most commonly carried out with the help of prescription medication. Surgical procedures are seldom needed. The patient must undergo a comprehensive endocrinological examination by undergoing clinical, laboratory and ultrasonographic evaluations. Based on the blood sample results which aim to determine THS levels, the doctor can determine whether a patient suffers from thyroid gland disorders or whether the problems may be associated with a different illness.
Thyroid gland during pregnancy
The correct function of the thyroid is essential during pregnancy to ensure that the baby is born healthy. Hormones of the thyroid gland harmoniously develop the baby’s nervous system in the womb during the most important trimester of a pregnancy. However, a healthy thyroid is important for the following months as well. Decreased thyroid function may lead to premature birth, abortions, abdominal discomfort or delivery through a C-section.
Thyroid disease in children
Children suffer from the same symptoms as adult patients. When parents identify such symptoms, they should seek out a pediatrician who will then refer them to specialized facilities. During regular examinations, the doctor will examine the size of the thyroid gland by sensing it with his/her hand. Often, the only symptoms of increased thyroid gland activity may manifest itself through problems with studying, lacking concentration, nausea and general muscle weakness.
Hypofunction of the thyroid: what foods are suitable?
With this diagnosis, the patient does not need to adhere to any specific diet, but can opt for foods which help in speeding up metabolism. Those foods should be in line with healthy food guidelines.
Limit consumption of cauliflower, broccoli, radish, cabbage, kohlrabi (all kinds of similar vegetables) because they contain substances which prevent the thyroid gland from making use of available iodine in the body. On the other hand, foods that are welcome include nuts, leaf vegetables, seafood, algae, fish, iodized salt, root vegetables and seeds. Make sure to eat lean meats, low-fat cheese, yoghurt and consume low-fat milk. Reduce consumption of fats and fatty meats. You can season your food with ginger, garlic and turmeric. A healthy diet can also be improved by ensuring regular exercise, stretching and yoga.
Hyperunction of the thyroid: what foods are suitable?
Eating sufficient amounts of cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage and kohlrabi is suitable. Substances found in these vegetables help in eliminating harmful substances produced by an overactive thyroid gland. Antioxidants can be introduced to the body by consuming berries (strawberries, blueberries, currants, raspberries and blackberries). Bone tissue loss can be countered by sufficient intake of vitamin D which can be found in mushrooms. Make sure to also consume olive oil and linseed oil which are both rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Turkey meat and sufficient intake of dairy products is also advised. Avoid consumption of fried foods, red meat, eggs and coffee, also ensuring that your cut down on your sugar intake.
Do you suffer from any of the above mentioned symptoms and feel that they can be associated with thyroid problems? Do any of your family members suffer underactive or overactive thyroid function? Do you often visit your doctor but they seem unable to help you? Book a visit to our specialist in the field of endocrinology by dialing (+420) 235 360 133 to ensure that you undergo all necessary examinations.