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This year’s week-long campaign is focusing on hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism in young children in particular. So I will be posting things in relation to this throughout the week.
International Thyroid Awareness Week this year will be aiming to encourage parents to have their children tested if they think they are displaying the symptoms of hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism. Some children are born without a thyroid gland which is why testing at birth is also important.
It is important for parents to be able to spot the signs and symptoms. Testing is simple and children benefit from early diagnosis and management of the condition. Passing thyroid disorders on to your children is possible if you or anyone else in your family have a thyroid disorder. It can also show up with no known family history, too, though.
My doctor told me that I have a 1 in 3 chance of passing my thyroid condition it on to a daughter and a 1 in 7 chance to a son.
In children, hypothyroidism can show as a child that moves slowly compared to their friends and not appearing to grow as fast. They may be often tired and sometimes sluggish. A child with hyperthyroidism could be overly active, fidgety, irritable and easily upset.
If thyroid hormone imbalances are undiagnosed and left untreated, they may have a detrimental effect on a child’s brain development, growth, performance in school, puberty, overall metabolism and general well-being. However, with diagnosis and proper treatment, children can lead normal and healthy lives.
Where Can I Order Testing From?
If your doctor won’t test your child for a thyroid condition but you believe they 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).
Do you know the signs of a thyroid condition in children?
You can click on the hyperlinks in the above post to learn more and see references to information given.
The book You, Me and Hypothyroidism: When Someone You Love Has Hypothyroidism, which is for those who know a thyroid patient, such as parents and carers. Learn how you can support your loved one with 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 authoring books, writing articles, her email newsletters, blogging and speaking on podcasts, as well as being a founding board member for the American College of Thyroidology and The WEGO Health Patient Leader Advisory Board. Rachel has worked with The National Academy of Hypothyroidism, The BBC, The Mighty, Yahoo, MSN, ThyroidChange and many more. She is well-recognised as a useful contributor to the thyroid community and has received multiple awards and recognitions for her work and dedication. She has authored two books: ‘Be Your Own Thyroid Advocate‘ and ‘You, Me and Hypothyroidism‘. Rachel is British, but advocates for thyroid patients on a global scale.