Thyroid problems come from over or underproduction of thyroid hormone, known as hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism, respectively. To balance hormone production, hyperthyroidism is cured by treatment, and whole hypothyroidism is cured by hormone replacement. In cases where the hormone production is not badly off, diet supplements, exercises, and herbs rely on might be included in one’s day to day life.
Since thyroid hormones are generated and are released to the bloodstream where they thrive, doctors can test and know the levels of the hormones in the blood. Through a blood test, a doctor can tell the level of the hormone itself as well as the thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), which is a chemical that triggers the thyroid to produce more or less.
For hypothyroidism, the level of TSH is usually higher so that it may trigger your thyroid to produce more hormones. In contrast, for hyperthyroidism, the level of TSH is significantly low for the lower production of hormones. Thyroid cancer can be tested through the blood, testing for the hormone called calcitonin needed to build bones.
The iodine test is mostly used to determine the cause of hyperthyroidism by checking the amount of iodine absorbed by the thyroid gland leading to the production of the hormone.
Nodules are fluid-filled sacs that may appear on your neck, and a doctor may have a look at them using an ultrasound. A biopsy may be conducted depending on the thyroid’s size and your chances of getting cancer by taking a sample tissue of your nodule for further cancerous tests.
Treatment options for different types of thyroid conditions.
- Subacute thyroiditis- this condition may not require medical treatment unless it leads to hyperthyroidism. Most prescriptions for this type of thyroiditis are the aspirin for relieving any pain that the inflammation may have caused. Your doctor might also prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs to be used on a short-term basis.
- Hyperthyroidism – the reduction or the production of the thyroid hormone might be done by radioactive iodine treatment, which involves swallowing a tablet containing radioactive iodine to damage the cells on your thyroid. Another option might be taking antithyroid medicine, which you might take for about one year. The last option will be surgery at a thyroid clinic, mostly recommended for pregnant women or if a cancer nodule is detected.
- Hypothyroidism- this is one of the most severe conditions of the thyroid, and it requires a patient to take thyroid hormone replacement for the rest of their life. A common thyroid hormone is levothyroxine, with minimal side effects apart from nervousness and chest pains in rare cases.
- Thyroid cancer- The first option to treat the cancer is usually surgery to remove the cancerous tissue. The spread of cancer will lead to the removal of the affected tissues as well.
Other options might include changing diet and nutrition by including many foods rich in calcium, iodine, magnesium, and all vitamins that will assist your thyroid to work effectively. Cleaning the body and the immune system is another common way people reduce thyroid problems. Still, it is important before embarking on this journey to visit a thyroid clinic for more insight.