Hypothyroidism is mainly due to the problem within the thyroid gland. A small percentage of cases could be due to the non-functioning of the pituitary gland which has a role to play. Pituitary gland produces a hormone called thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH).
This hormone stimulates the thyroid gland to produce the thyroid hormone. If the pituitary gland does not produce TSH, the thyroid gland does not get the stimulant required for producing the thyroid hormone. Hence, the thyroid gland may not produce the hormone required to run the body’s metabolism.
The majority of hypothyroidism cases are due to autoimmune reaction. The immune system in the body wrongly identifies the thyroid cells as invaders and produces antibodies to attack them. This disorder is called Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. The damaged thyroid gland is unable to produce the thyroid hormone and this gives rise to the condition of hypothyroidism.
The symptoms of hypothyroidism develop gradually over a period of time and they are mistaken for symptoms of depression. The most common symptoms of hypothyroidism are given below. Individual patients experience them differently.
- Dull facial expressions
- Hoarse voice
- Slow speech
- Droopy eyelids
- Swollen face
- Weight gain
- Sparse and dry hair
- Dry and thickened skin
- Slow pulse
- Muscle cramps
- Eyebrows become thin or fall out
- Increased menstrual flow
Some patients suffering from hypothyroidism experience extreme thirst as their first symptom of something being wrong. Extreme thirst is considered to be the first sign of an endocrine problem and usually associated with diabetes mellitus. However, even hypothyroidism can cause it. If you are experiencing extreme thirst for no reason whatsoever, it is best to consult a doctor.
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