Why Women are More Likely to Get Thyroid Disease

Thyroid disease affects millions of Americans every year, but women are ten times more likely to have an imbalance than men. There is no definitive answer as to why this is, but doctors speculate it is likely due to different hormones and the reproductive system. For any general health questions or concerns, visit AFC Urgent Care West Hartford. Out physicians are able to diagnose you or refer you to a specialist depending on your needs. 

Different Types of Thyroid Disease

Thyroid disease can include hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, and thyroid cancer. No matter what the illness is, thyroid diseases are most commonly caused by autoimmune disorders in the United States. They are a result of either an over or underactive thyroid gland. Graves’ disease is a common form of hyperthyroidism. Symptoms of hyperthyroidism include:

  • Anxiety or irritability
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Losing weight 
  • Muscle weakness
  • Irregular menstrual periods

With hypothyroidism, symptoms are the opposite. These symptoms are common in a variety of illnesses. Getting regular check-ups and talking with doctors about health concerns can help keep you safe. Symptoms include:

  • Fatigue
  • Gaining weight
  • Intolerance to cold temperatures
  • Heavy and frequent menstrual periods

Family medical history, age, presence of other autoimmune disorders, and having down syndrome or Turner’s syndrome can all increase the risk of having a thyroid problem. Additionally, changes in hormones within the body all have an impact.

Effects on Women

Hormones highly impact thyroid diseases. This means that experiences such as puberty and menstrual cycles, pregnancy, and menopause all have impacts. Irregular or light periods can be caused by thyroid issues if they are common in a family’s medical history. They can also impact ovulation and the ability to get pregnant. Thyroid diseases can also become a problem during pregnancy, but especially after pregnancy. They can cause miscarriages, stillbirth, and postpartum hemorrhage. Lastly, thyroid diseases can cause an early menopause (around 40s). 

If you are or have experienced any of those hormonal imbalances, it’s important to let your doctor know. 

Treatment of Thyroid Disease

The overall goal is to get thyroid levels back to normal, whether they are higher or lower than normal. Your doctor may recommend different prescriptions, treatments, or surgery. In some cases, your doctor may recommend removing part of or the entire thyroid. The recovery period for this is typically around two weeks before being able to return to normal activities. 

While uncomfortable, thyroid disease can be manageable with hormone treatments. AFC Urgent Care West Hartford can provide you with all of the answers and information you may have. Visit us today to get a proper diagnosis and treatment options. 

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