Millions of Americans suffer from various thyroid conditions. The two most common are hyperthyroidism (and overproduction of specific hormones) and hypothyroidism (a lack of thyroid hormones). As the thyroid regulates many automatic processes throughout your body, it is always wise to seek advice from a medical professional if you suspect that an issue may be present.
However, might it be possible to check the condition of your thyroid at home? While this is certainly not as accurate as a firm diagnosis, it could still be wise if you hope to detect some physical symptoms. Let's take a closer look.
Initial Symptoms to Recognise
Before performing any type of do-it-yourself thyroid check, we should highlight some symptoms that may indicate that a problem is present. Signs that you may be suffering from hyperthyroidism include:
- Difficulty sleeping
- Weight loss
- Increased appetite
- Trouble sleeping
- Weakness in the muscles
Hypothyroidism (an underactive gland) can be associated with these symptoms:
- Weight gain
- Excessive sleeping
- Increase appetite
- A lower heart rate
- Feelings of malaise or depression
It is a good idea to check out this link to learn about other symptoms that may exist. Of course, there can also be times when a more serious issue such as thyroid cancer is causing problems. Either way, obtaining a professional diagnosis is essential.
The At-Home Thyroid Test
Although hyperthyroidism cannot be detected without the help of a doctor, it may be possible to spot the signs of hypothyroidism. One of the most common causes of hypothyroidism is a condition known as goiter. A goiter is an abnormally large thyroid gland.
If you wish to perform a self-examination, you will first need a mirror. Try to follow these simple steps:
- Hold the mirror out in front and focus upon the lower portion of your neck (immediately above your collarbones and just below your larynx).
- Gently tilt your head back and take a sip of water.
- While swallowing, watch your lower neck for any signs of bulging.
If you note any type of protrusion, be sure to speak with your physician as soon as possible. However, do not make the mistake of confusing your thyroid gland for your Adam's apple (in both men and women). This picture will be useful if you have trouble finding its location.
Taking a Proactive Approach
Do you suspect that your thyroid gland may be enlarged? Assuming that this is caused by hypothyroidism, there are plenty of options. Whether referring to natural supplements such as Armour Thyroid medication or prescriptions provided by a physician, your issues can normally be resolved.
Still, never delay if you believe that an issue is present. Most thyroid problems do not resolve themselves without medical intervention and it is always prudent to rule out more serious health conditions such as cancer.