In our recent blog posts, we covered the basic functions of the thyroid in ‘What is a Thyroid, and What Does it Do?‘ followed by our post on Symptoms of Hypothyroidism (Underactive Thyroid).
In this post, we’ll look at hyperthyroidism, or overactive thyroid, which occurs when the thyroid produces too much thyroid hormone.
Hyperthyroidism — not to be confused with hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid — can be caused by a variety of conditions, including Graves’ Disease, Plummer’s Disease, toxic adenoma, and thyroiditis.
When the thyroid produces too much thyroid hormone, known as thyroxine or T4, your metabolism speeds up and your body reacts in a number of different ways.
Symptoms of HYPERTHYROIDISM can include any or all of the following:
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat
- Feeling nervous, anxious, or irritable
- Difficulty concentrating
- Feeling too hot, sensitivity to heat
- Excessive sweating
- Warm, red skin that may be itchy
- Tiredness and fatigue, but often with difficulty sleeping
- Weight loss, even with possible increased appetite
- Hand tremors
- Muscle weakness
- Eye discomfort or irritation
- Diarrhea or frequent bowel movements
- Fine, soft hair or hair loss
- Dry, thinning skin
- Nausea and vomiting
- Menstrual irregularities (decreased flow)
- Infertility in women
- Breast development in men
- Enlarged thyroid gland (goiter), swelling at the base of the neck
If you’re experiencing a combination of these symptoms, you may be suffering from hyperthyroidism or overactive thyroid.
Left untreated, hyperthyroidism can have long-term consequences for your health. But the good news is that hyperthyroidism can often be treated fairly easily.
The endocrinologists at Palm Beach Diabetes & Endocrine Specialists, PA (PBDES) specialize in treating all types of thyroid disorders. Our physicians are board-certified in endocrinology and metabolism and have extensive clinical practice, research, and teaching experience.
To learn more about hyperthyroidism treatment contact one of our four southeast Florida offices today — in West Palm Beach, Boynton Beach, Jupiter or Wellington.