Hyperthyroidism - FAQs
What is the thyroid gland?
The thyroid gland is a gland responsible for producing thyroid hormones that help the body use energy, stay warm and keep the brain, heart, muscles, and other organs working normally. It is located in the neck.
What is hyperthyroidism?
Hyperthyroidism is the ‘over functioning’ of the thyroid gland, producing excessive thyroid hormone. This, in turn, affects a number of bodily functions, including an increased heart rate, resulting in hyperthyroid symptoms such as weight loss, anxiety, diarrhoea, insomnia and other symptoms of an overactive thyroid.
What are the symptoms of hyperthyroidism?
Symptoms may include weight loss, nervousness, irritability, increased perspiration, racing heart, hand tremors, anxiety, difficulty sleeping, increased bowel movements, fine and brittle hair, and muscular weakness, especially in the upper arms and thighs. Those with Graves’ disease may experience bulging in one or both eyes.
What causes hyperthyroidism?
The most common cause is Graves’ disease . Another cause is one or more overactive nodules or lumps in the thyroid, a condition known as toxic nodular or multi-nodular goitre. Furthermore, you may temporarily have hyperthyroid symptoms if you have thyroiditis, which causes the gland to leak the thyroid hormone, or if you end up taking too much thyroid hormone medication.
Can excessive thyroid medication given to hypothyroid sufferers cause hyperthyroidism?
Yes. The dosages prescribed may be so strong sometimes that they cause hyperthyroidism. In such a case, your doctor should reduce the dosage of medication until you no longer symptomatically have hyperthyroid and the test results normalise. The same is true in case of hypothyroidism: when the medication for hyperthyroidism becomes too strong, it can lead to hypothyroidism.
How is the diagnosis of hyperthyroidism made?
A physical examination and laboratory tests that measure the amount of thyroid hormone in your blood are necessary. Our doctors may ask you to get a picture of your thyroid (a thyroid scan). The measurement of antibodies in blood that attack the thyroid may help in diagnosing the cause of hyperthyroidism.
What is hyperthyroidism and Graves’ disease?
Graves’s disease is the most common type of hyperthyroidism. It is caused by over-activity of the thyroid gland.
If I ignore my hyperthyroidism, will it go away?
Most forms of hyperthyroid disease will not go away on their own; in fact, not treating them can be very dangerous. Initially, it can lead to irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure and even a risk of heart attack or stroke, leading to a life-threatening complication called the thyroid storm.
How will homeopathy help me with hyperthyroidism?
Homeopathy is a very safe and effective treatment for hyperthyroidism. This treatment not only keeps your thyroid hormones in the normal range but also helps in reducing symptoms of hyperthyroidism. Long-term homeopathic treatment helps in reducing dependency on conventional treatment for hyperthyroidism and prevents complications. Homeopathy treats your hyperthyroidism from the root by improving your immune system.
Myths and facts
- Only older women develop hyperthyroid problems.
While one out of five women around the age of 60 has a chance of developing hyperthyroidism, they are not the only ones to develop the disease. Women are vulnerable to hyperthyroidism at any age, in particular, during the post-partum period and as their hormones begin to change in their late thirties. However, men in their mid-thirties and forties are also at a risk of developing thyroid conditions. The symptoms of hyperthyroidism differ as per gender.
- Everyone with hyperthyroidism gets bulging eyes.
Even though ‘bulging eyes’ is one symptom of the thyroid eye disease, there are exceptions.
- People with hyperthyroidism cannot gain weight.
An overactive thyroid does cause weight loss, but there are exceptions. If you experience abnormal weight loss, hyperthyroidism may be one of the possibilities, provided your other symptoms match. Our doctors will help you understand reasons for your weight loss.