Thyroid – The Difference Between an Overactive and Underactive Thyroid

The thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped gland that is situated in the neck, right below the Adam’s apple. It is responsible for regulating the body’s metabolic processes. Thyroid hormones help regulate how tissues in our bodies function. Abnormally high or low thyroid hormone levels can manifest in different ways. Problems can arise from an overactive thyroid or and underactive thyroid.

Overactive thyroid also known as hyperthyroidism is most common in women ages 20-40. Some people think thyroid problems only affect women. But in truth they can affect both sexes. Symptoms of overactive thyroid will be similar in most of the people who suspect that may have this thyroid condition.

Symptoms include: weakness and fatigue, infertility, increased perspiration, changes to menstrual cycles, eye irritation, anxiety, frequent and looser bowel movements, sensitivity to heat, shaky hands, weight loss, increased heart rate, to name a few.

Underactive thyroid or hypothyroidism is often referred to as low thyroid. This thyroid condition produces another set of symptoms. Symptoms of low thyroid are a result of a declining hormone levels. The symptoms of an underactive thyroid are: sluggishness and fatigue, weight gain, dry hair and skin, brittle nails, menstrual irregularities, sensitivity to cold, constipation, depression or irritability, headaches, muscle and joint pain, among other things.

Those who have family members with thyroid issues are more at risk genetically. If you know that your family has a history of thyroid problems it is very important to watch for these symptoms. One or more of these symptoms may indicate a thyroid problem. If you suspect some of your symptoms might be attributed to thyroid dysfunction it would be advisable to seek help. Figuring out your thyroid function is something best left for people who specialize in providing thyroid support.

It’s easy to see that experiencing any of these symptoms can be frustrating. These symptoms can be dealt with on a daily basis. Because they cause irritation but are not necessarily disabling, patients might feel as if they can just “live with them”. It’s important to remember that ignoring these symptoms, whether from overactive to underactive thyroid, might have long-term consequences.

If these symptoms are ignored your condition may worsen. Problems can steamroll into bigger problems such as rheumatoid arthritis, anemia or neurological disorders. If you continue to suffer from symptoms of thyroid problems for weeks, months or even years your condition may become more complicated. It is never a good idea to risk one’s health. In this case procrastinating would not be in your best interest. You don’t have to find the answers on your own. You can learn more simply by seeking help from someone well versed in thyroid function.

Any person is suffering from any of these thyroid symptoms should know that there is hope. By finding an expert in thyroid support a patient can well be on their way to finding answers to their thyroid questions. Finding direction and assistance in unlocking some of the mysteries surrounding your symptoms may help set you on the road to a happier healthier you.