5 Causes Of Hypothyroidism You Should Know
Hypothyroidism basically means that the thyroid gland is not functioning properly. It refers to the low functioning of the thyroid gland.
Hypothyroidism is not governed by any lifestyle factor
- Hypothyroidism is the deficiency of hormone production by the gland
- It needs you to take a life-long course of medication
- Hypothyroidism can occur due to surgery of the neck
Thyroid disorders are very common. 12% of the world's population is dealing with this condition and shockingly, women are at a much higher risk. Yes, women are 8 times more likely to suffer from thyroid disorders. One such condition of the thyroid gland is hypothyroidism. This condition refers to the low production of the hormones from the thyroid gland. Dr. Atul Luthra says, "Hypothyroidism basically means that the thyroid gland is not functioning properly. It refers to the low functioning of the thyroid gland or the deficiency of hormone production by the gland."
Also read: 7 Natural Ways To Prevent And Treat Hair Loss Due To Hypothyroidism
The one thing you must know about this disease is that it is not backed by your lifestyle habits. What you do, what you eat and what your workout schedule is, neither affects the risk of this condition. This treatment usually needs you to take a life-long course of medication. But what factors are responsible for this condition, let's find out.
Also read: Is it safe to undergo radioactive iodine treatment for hyperthyroidism?
We have compiled a list of the 5 major causes of hypothyroidism. Keep reading.
1. Auto-immune thyroid disease
This one is caused by antibodies made by the immune system against the thyroid gland. This is known as an auto-immune thyroid disease. This disease is known as Hashimoto thyroiditis. This condition is triggered when the thyroid gland gets destroyed by the immune system. It is usually triggered by a stressful incident and is more common in women than in men. It may lead to fatigue, nervousness, and irritability.
Also read: Do I have hypothyroidism?
2. Surgery or radiation in the neck region
Sometimes, hypothyroidism can occur due to surgery of the neck. The neck is where the thyroid gland is located so this is why the risk of hypothyroidism increase. It usually involves the thyroid surgery which is the removal of a part of the thyroid. This surgery is meant to reduce the thyroid function which is why it may result in hypothyroidism. However, going through this surgery does not conclusively mean that you will develop hypothyroidism.
Also read: 8 Natural Treatments For Hypothyroidism
Certain drugs like lithium can sometimes lead to hypothyroidism. Besides this, epilepsy drugs, chemotherapy drugs, and other drugs which contain iodine may even trigger hypothyroidism. But keeping all these aside, lithium continues to be the strongest cause of hypothyroidism.
4. Severe iodine deficiency
In only a few cases, an iodine deficiency can lead to hypothyroidism. But when we say iodine deficiency, we refer to severe iodine deficiency. You can prevent this from happening by using a substantial amount of iodine. Checking the iodine levels in your regular table salt in one way of doing the same.
Also read: How can hypothyroidism be managed?
5. Treatment for hyperthyroidism
Sometimes, hyperthyroidism treatments can also trigger hypothyroidism. Hyperthyroidism is just the opposite of hypothyroidism, that is, it involves the excess production of hormones from the thyroid gland. The thyroid treatment formulas used in such a treatment are high in iodine which is meant to boost the functioning of the gland. But in some cases, it may just interfere with the normal functioning.
Also read: The Best Dietary And Other Guidelines To Treat Hypothyroidism
"No particular lifestyle measure can help you prevent the disease because it is not governed by any lifestyle factor. However, women at all ages must get their thyroid checked at least once a year. And if they had a family history of the disease, if any female ever suffered due to the disease in the past, they are at a higher risk of this condition," Dr Luthra concluded.
(Dr Atul Luthra is the Additional Director of the Department of Lifestyle Diseases and Metabolic Disorders at Fortis Hospital, Gurgaon)
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.