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The 25th May this year is World Thyroid Day, so you can expect any thyroid awareness organisations, advocates and charities to be posting about it; including me!
The Thyroid Foundation of Canada say that 200 million people in the world have some form of thyroid disease, including 1 in 20 people in the UK. As many as 60% are undiagnosed, and of those diagnosed, a lot are not adequately treated.
This is why we need to keep on sharing information about the condition and encourage anyone with symptoms of hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism to get checked out.
Though of course, for those who do get it checked out or who are diagnosed, we need them to know that not just TSH should be used to check for hypothyroidism, so we need to create awareness that a full thyroid panel needs doing.
If your doctor won’t test you for a thyroid condition but you believe you may have one, or if they won’t run all the tests you need, you can explore ordering your own from online lab services.
Medichecks is a popular place in the UK, where you can order the all important thyroid function test, Reverse T3, cortisol testing for your adrenals and thyroid antibodies to check for autoimmune hypothyroidism (Hashimoto’s).
I’ll be posting photos on my Facebook page about different areas of hypothyroidism that need to be raised awareness of, throughout the week.
Symptoms for hypothyroidism include: ongoing fatigue, muscle aches and pains, sensitivity to cold, depression, weight gain, sleep disturbances, low libido, dry skin, brittle hair and nails and never feeling fully well.
Symptoms for hyperthyroidism include: anxiety, palpitations, unexplained weight loss, flushes, irritability and sensitivity to heat etc.
For those of us already diagnosed, we can gain awareness about how to check our thyroid glands regularly for any abnormalities, what vitamins may help us and what tests we need to ensure our doctors are doing on us. We should also be aware of what results we are looking for.
We should also share any resources we’ve found helpful. Check my list out here.
World Thyroid Day is about creating awareness of thyroid disease and disorders as a whole – for those going undiagnosed, for those going untreated or under-treated and for those doing well like me, but can always learn some more about this far-reaching condition.
You can click on the hyperlinks in the above post to learn more and see references to information given.
What are you doing to help raise awareness this World Thyroid Day?
The book Be Your Own Thyroid Advocate: When You’re Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired, for the ultimate guide in getting your health and life back on track when you have Hashimoto’s and/or hypothyroidism.
Rachel Hill is the highly ranked and multi-award winning thyroid patient advocate, writer, speaker and author behind The Invisible Hypothyroidism. Her thyroid advocacy work includes writing articles, authoring books, producing her Thyroid Family email newsletters and speaking on podcasts, as well as being a founding board member for the American College of Thyroidology. She is well-recognised as a crucial contributor to the thyroid community and has a large social media presence. Her books include “Be Your Own Thyroid Advocate” and “You, Me and Hypothyroidism”.