Treatment for hypothyroidism
Treatment for hypothyroidism focuses on supplementing the thyroid hormone. At present, doctors cannot cure hypothyroidism but they can help people to control it in most cases.
Hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s Disease are medical conditions that have no cure in western medicine and treated by giving patients a laboratory synthesized Thyroid Hormone (Synthroid).
Standard treatment for hypothyroidism involves daily use of the synthetic thyroid hormone levothyroxine (Levo-T, Synthroid). This oral medication restores adequate hormone levels, reversing the signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism.
Common approaches to treatment for hypothyroidism that can help reduce the symptoms described below in this article.
You’ll likely start to feel better soon after you start treatment. The medication gradually lowers cholesterol levels elevated by the disease and may reverse any weight gain. Treatment with levothyroxine will likely be lifelong, but because the dosage you need may change, your doctor is likely to check your TSH level every year.
Determining proper dosage may take time
To determine the right dosage of levothyroxine for the treatment of hypothyroidism, your doctor generally checks your level of TSH after six to eight weeks. After that, blood levels are generally checked six months later. Excessive amounts of the hormone can cause side effects, such as:
- Increased appetite
- Heart palpitations
If you have coronary artery disease or severe hypothyroidism, your doctor may start treatment with a smaller amount of medication and gradually increase the dosage. Progressive hormone replacement allows your heart to adjust to the increase in metabolism.
Due to the side effects caused by medication, lots of people are looking into natural treatment for hypothyroidism.
Hashimoto disease treatment
Hashimoto disease treatment usually depends on whether your thyroid is damaged enough to cause hypothyroidism. If you don’t have hypothyroidism, your doctor may choose to simply monitor you to see if your disease gets worse.
Hypothyroidism is treated is achieved by replacing the hormone that your own thyroid can no longer make. You will take levothyroxine NIH external link, a thyroid hormone medicine that is identical to a hormone the thyroid normally makes.
What is hypothyroidism?
What is hypothyroidism? Hypothyroidism occurs when your body doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormones. The thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland that sits at the front of your neck. It releases hormones to help your body regulate and use energy.
The thyroid is responsible for providing energy to nearly every organ in your body. It controls functions such as how your heart beats and how your digestive system works. Without the right amount of thyroid hormones, your body’s natural functions begin to slow down.
Hypothyroidism is also called underactive thyroid, hypothyroidism affects women more frequently than men. It commonly affects people over the age of 60 years old, but it can begin at any age. It may be discovered through a routine blood test or after symptoms begin.
However, you may be wondering if Hashimoto’s disease is the same as hypothyroidism. Though both are related, it is a different condition and required a very different approach.
What is Hashimoto’s disease?
Hashimoto’s disease is an autoimmune disorder that can cause hypothyroidism or underactive thyroid. With this disease, your immune system attacks your thyroid. The thyroid becomes damaged and can’t make enough thyroid hormones. Hashimoto’s disease is also called Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis, or autoimmune thyroiditis.
Causes of hypothyroidism
The causes of hypothyroidism are divided into primary causes and secondary causes. A primary cause of hypothyroidism is a condition that directly impacts the thyroid and causes it to create low levels of thyroid hormones. A secondary cause is something that causes the pituitary gland to fail, which means it can’t send thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) to the thyroid to balance out the thyroid hormones.
Primary causes of hypothyroidism are much more common. The most common of these primary causes is an autoimmune condition called Hashimoto’s disease. Also called Hashimoto’s thyroiditis or chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis, this condition is hereditary (passed down through a family). In Hashimoto’s disease, the body’s immune system attacks and damages the thyroid. This prevents the thyroid from making and releasing enough thyroid hormone.
The other primary causes of hypothyroidism include:
- Having a family history of thyroid disease
- Having other autoimmune diseases (such as rheumatoid arthritis, type 1 diabetes, or lupus)
- Having undergone thyroid surgery
- Having a history of exposure to radiation to your neck or upper chest
- Iodine deficiency (not having enough iodine in your body).
Symptoms of hypothyroidism
The symptoms of hypothyroidism often develop slowly over the years and maybe mistaken for the natural changes of aging.
Hypothyroidism symptoms in Adults
Look out for these potential symptoms of hypothyroidism:
- Weight gain
- Sensitivity to cold temperatures
- Dry skin
- Thinning hair
- Heavy menstrual periods (in women)
- Trouble sleeping
- Difficulty concentrating
- Pain or swelling of the joints
- High cholesterol levels
- Muscle weakness
Hypothyroidism symptoms in Infants
Hypothyroidism is most common in middle-aged and older women. But sometimes infants and children can develop the condition, such as infants who were born without a thyroid gland or who have a thyroid gland that doesn’t function properly.
The symptoms of hypothyroidism in infants may include:
- Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes)
- Frequent choking
- Puffy face
Hypothyroidism symptoms in Children and Teens
Symptoms of hypothyroidism in children and teens are similar to symptoms in adults and can include the following:
- Poor growth or short stature
- Delayed puberty
- Slow reaction time
- Weight gain
- Coarse, dry hair or skin
- Muscle cramps
- Delayed mental development
- Increased menstrual flow (in girls)
Natural treatment for hypothyroidism
The standard treatment for hypothyroidism is taking daily thyroid hormone replacement medication. Of course, medications often come with side effects, and forgetting to take a pill might lead to more symptoms.
This is where natural treatment for hypothyroidism comes inline, it causes no side effects and fits into your overall lifestyle better. The goal of natural remedies for hypothyroidism is to fix the root cause of the thyroid problem. Thyroid problems sometimes start as the result of:
- Poor diet
- Missing nutrients in your body
Changing your diet and taking an herbal supplement are two ways you can help your thyroid condition. These options may have fewer side effects than taking thyroid medication. Listed below are hypothyroid natural treatments.
Home remedies for hypothyroidism – an important addition to any approach to the treatment of hypothyroidism
Those who suffer from thyroid problems can look at home remedies for hypothyroidism to deal with the issue more comprehensively without causing any side effects. Listed below a few home remedies for hypothyroidism that works.
Coconut oil is a home remedy for hypothyroidism that has medium-chain fatty acids that help in the better functioning of the thyroid gland. Coconut oil is a natural remedy for hypothyroidism, specifically when taken in a non-heated form, helps lose weight, increases metabolism, and balances body temperature.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar helps in the balanced production and expression of hormones. It improves metabolism and helps to alkalize the body environment. Apple cider vinegar helps regulate body fats, wash away toxins from the body, and absorption of nutrients. Apple cider vinegar can be added to water along with honey and can be taken every morning
This is one of the easiest home remedies for hypothyroidism as it is easily available. Ginger is rich in essential minerals like potassium and magnesium and helps combat inflammation, one of the primary causes of thyroid issues. It is easiest to have ginger tea.
Vitamins are another home remedy for hypothyroidism that helps to fight the underlying causes of thyroid problems. Vitamins from the ‘B’ family are essential for proper thyroid function. Vitamin B12 is especially instrumental in helping people with hypothyroidism. Including eggs, meat, fish, legumes, milk, and nut in daily diet might help with a steady supply of Vitamin B.
The deficiency of vitamin D can lead to thyroid problems. Since the body can produce it only when exposed to the sun, ensure that you get a minimum of 15 minutes of sunlight daily. This will also lead to better calcium absorption and good immunity.
Diet for hypothyroidism – an essential component of any treatment for hypothyroidism
You do not need to follow a special diet for hypothyroidism when using thyroid hormone medications, with a few exceptions. Limit foods high in soy protein, because large amounts of soy can interfere with the absorption of thyroid hormone. Also,
avoid excessive amounts of iodine, both in medications and supplements, as this can potentially alter the level of thyroid hormone. Most iodine-rich foods, like iodized products or fish, are acceptable. In addition to these restrictions, you are free to eat what you want but aim for a healthy diet that includes lots of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
Adopting a nutritious thyroid diet not only keeps you feeling good when your thyroid levels are normal, but it also helps your digestive system to function smoothly and your heart to pump efficiently – both supporting a healthy metabolism. If you still don’t feel well despite the medication, improving your diet and starting an exercise program can help. The following are some tips for healthy eating.
Eat nutritious foods. Eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and whole grains to improve your overall health. Protein in your diet for hypothyroidism should derive from lean sources such as fish, soy, or beans. Rely on healthy oils such as olive, avocado, and truffle oils.
Herbs for hypothyroidism – great natural home-based treatment for hypothyroidism
Herbs for hypothyroidism is a natural treatment for hypothyroidism that has been proven to be effective without any side effects. Listed below are some of the herbs for hypothyroidism that are effective to help reduce the symptoms of hypothyroidism:
Centella asiatica, or Gotu kola
Gotu kola is a great herbal remedy for hypothyroidism that is considered one of the safer adaptogenic herbs and is generally well tolerated by patients. One of the most common subjective symptoms that hypothyroid patients report is “brain fog”. Centella in the herbal formula can help support cognitive function.
Fucus vesiculosus is another herb for hypothyroidism that is alternatively known as Bladderwrack. It is the herb most commonly associated with the treatment of hypothyroidism. This is a kelp and seaweed product that is often used in hypothyroidism due to the high iodine content.
This herb for hypothyroidism is also often found in hypothyroid formulas. It is a wonderful herbal remedy for hypothyroidism and a great choice for patients that are extremely fatigued. With the added bonus that it can help with insulin sensitivity and cardiovascular health. However, once again, Cordyceps Sinensis has not been shown to improve thyroid function directly.
Homeopathy for hypothyroidism – #1 natural treatment for hypothyroidism
Homeopathy for hypothyroidism is a natural remedy for hypothyroidism that does not only considers symptoms of the disease but also considers the constitution of the patient. That means the physical, mental and emotional states of the patient.
Homeopathy for hypothyroidism is highly effective and especially useful for people who want to avoid the side effects. When hypothyroidism is not treated, signs and symptoms can gradually become more severe. Listed below are homeopathic remedies for hypothyroidism:
This homeopathic remedy for hypothyroidism is one of the commonly prescribed homeopathic medicines for treating hypothyroidism. It is prescribed in obese people who cannot tolerate cold temperatures at all. The person requiring this remedy may exhibit excessive sweating on the head and are extremely sluggish in their work.
This homeopathic remedy is prescribed in those individuals suffering from hypothyroidism who are extremely angry by nature and get offended very easily. They are very sensitive to all external impressions. This medicine also helps in relieving obstinate constipation in hypothyroid patients.
Similarly, there are other remedies for hypothyroidism like Lycopodium Clavatum, Sepia, and Graphites which are prescribed for hypothyroidism as per their personalities. However, self-medication is not recommended. An expert homeopathic doctor takes a detailed case history and prescribes a suitable homeopathic medicine for better treatment outcomes and a longer disease-free period.
Acupuncture for hypothyroidism – an ancient Chinese treatment for hypothyroidism
Acupuncture is one of the hypothyroid natural treatments that has been used to treat the underlying conditions of hypothyroidism.
Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) regards both hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism as Yin/Yang imbalances, and often uses acupuncture, herbal medicine, and dietary therapy to rebalance Yin and Yang (the concept of duality forming a whole).
According to the World Health Organization, acupuncture for hypothyroidism is very effective. A study at the Shanghai Medical University in China found that symptoms of hypothyroidism improved significantly when treated with a Chinese herbal preparation to stimulate the kidney energy channel, confirming the tie between hypothyroidism and a deficiency in kidney energy.
Listed below are some of the benefits of acupuncture for hypothyroidism
- Increasing levels of thyroid hormones in people with hypothyroidism
- Lowering levels of thyroid hormones in patients with hyperthyroidism
- Reducing sensitivity to pain and stress, as well as promoting relaxation by acting on specific areas of the brain
- Increasing the release of the chemical adenosine, which decreases sensitivity to pain
- Improving muscle stiffness and joint mobility by increasing blood circulation in small blood vessels, which aids dispersal of swelling
- Reducing inflammation by promoting the release of vascular and immunomodulatory factors.
Acupuncture for hypothyroidism is beneficial and safe for the treatment of thyroid as many patients have shown significant improvement after starting the most popular treatment in Chinese Medicine – acupuncture.
Acupuncture for hypothyroidism has served as an effective alternative treatment for many ailments including also Hashimoto’s Disease. For the sake of introduction, let’s take a look at basic things about Acupuncture especially how it works.
Acupuncture involves the insertion of fine needles into specific points on the body called acupuncture points. There are many points networked together, and they form meridians in the body system. These points run longitudinally on the body surface, and they make 20 meridians in the entire body. 12 meridians out of these are referred to as the primary meridians which are connected to specific organs of the body. These Acupuncture points have fine needles inserted to bring about healing for the different parts of the body or particular points for a certain ailment.
Another important fact about Acupuncture is what is called the term Qi which is regarded as the flow of energy in the meridians. These meridians are connected to different systems in the body, and this includes the gastrointestinal system, immune system, endocrine system, and Acupuncture helps the proper flow of blood through all these systems to guarantee their wellness. Acupuncture reduces stress and pain in the body by stimulating the release of neurotransmitters and endorphins. Acupuncture also can modulate the immune system.
How acupuncture for hypothyroid can treat Hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s Disease.
Hypothyroidism and Hashimoto’s Disease can be primarily described as an under-active thyroid gland in an individual and these show different symptoms in patients such as slow speech, puffy face, hoarse voice, constipation, dry skin and hair, weight gain, and depression.
TCM for hypothyroidism uses the combination of Acupuncture for hypothyroidism, dietary therapy, and herbal medicine to treat such disorders by balancing Yin and Yang to the appropriate proportion in the body.
Mechanism of TCM and Acupuncture for hypothyroidism
Acupuncture for the thyroid tends to improve the well-being of patients with Hypothyroidism and act as a potent alternative to substitution therapy. Acupuncture for hypothyroidism treats Hashimoto’s Disease by modulating the immune systems. This modulated immune system through the help of Acupuncture can also improve immunological conditions such as allergies, immunodeficiency syndromes, autoimmune conditions, and infections.
World Health Organization (WHO) attests to the potency of Acupuncture in the treatment of thyroid disease and specifically, there are several studies on the benefits of Chinese Medicine for hypothyroidism especially Acupuncture for hypothyroidism. For example, a one-year study in a Chinese university by the name Shanghai Medical University on 32 patients with Hypothyroidism came out with significant improvement.
For people with Grave’s disease and Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, Acupuncture for thyroid works for this category by modulating the immune system but does not correct whatever trigger responsible for the condition. For example, in the case of a person with a leaky gut that is caused by gluten intolerance (H. Pylori Infection), Acupuncture will not directly heal the condition of a leaky gut or H.Pylori infection. The healing will come from the combination of Acupuncture with other natural treatments and modulate the immune system.
Acupuncture for hypothyroidism – Most common treatment in Chinese Medicine
Chinese Medicine for hypothyroidism often recommends the combination of Chinese Medicinal Herbs Aconite (fu zi) and Cinnamon (rou gui) and Acupuncture for hypothyroidism. Another common herbal formula used is Kidney Yang Tonic (Jin Gui Shen Qi Wan) and Right Restoration Formula (You Gui Wan). These are combination therapy administered to ensure that the patient is free from Hypothyroidism.
The benefits of Acupuncture are not limited to Hypothyroidism or Hashimoto’s Disease alone; it is beneficial to treat infertility, asthma, acute and chronic pain, migraine, and many other conditions.
Acupuncture for thyroid is an effective alternative treatment when it is administered by a reputable and experienced acupuncturist. The right procedures which include proper diagnosis and the required number of sessions that will be needed for total recovery will be discussed with the patients. Acupuncture for the thyroid brings about the tranquility the body requires and this will be achieved when the right acupuncturist administers treatment.
If you are interested in the treatment of Hypothyroidism or Hashimoto’s Disease using holistic medicine approaches, Chinese Acupuncture, and/or Homeopathic remedies – make an appointment for an Alternative Holistic Evaluation at Philadelphia Acupuncture Clinic.
Dr. Tsan and associates will examine you and propose the most customized treatment plan.
Contact our clinic at (267) 314-7575