For women, becoming a mother is an exciting experience. After all, it brings happiness and new challenges in their lives. But did you know that some women also struggle with additional health challenges apart from the common ones? Yes, thyroid in pregnancy is one of the most challenging health issues women can face. It is because the thyroid affects the health of both the mother and the baby. In such circumstances, understanding what thyroid conditions are, their symptoms during pregnancy, and how they can be managed is crucial. So, if you’re willing to do so, give this blog a quick read. 

What is Thyroid?

To those unaware, the thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland located in the neck. It plays a vital role in regulating the body’s metabolism, which is how the body uses energy. Now, the thyroid produces hormones like thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). These hormones control many bodily functions, including heart rate, body temperature, and weight. But when the production of these hormones begins to fluctuate, it becomes an issue for one. And change in thyroid levels in pregnancy is possible. 

Can Thyroid Issues Happen During Pregnancy?

Yes, thyroid issues can happen during pregnancy. You can get to know this with the help of a thyroid test in pregnancy. 

For some women, it can happen before pregnancy, and vice versa. Yet, there are two main types of thyroid disorders. 

  • Hypothyroidism: This condition happens when the thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormones
  • Hyperthyroidism: This condition occurs when the thyroid gland produces too much thyroid hormone. 

The point women should note is, that both conditions can have major effects on pregnancy. Thus, maintaining normal thyroid levels in pregnancy becomes essential. 

Thyroid Symptoms in Pregnancy

Here are the thyroid symptoms in pregnancy to look out for:

Hypothyroidism Symptoms

  • Fatigue: If you’re feeling extremely tired.
  • Weight Gain: Sudden weight gain can be a sign.
  • Cold Intolerance: Feeling cold all the time.
  • Constipation: Long-time constipation that doesn’t improve.
  • Dry Skin and Hair: Too much dry skin and hair loss.
  • Muscle Cramps: Constant and severe muscle cramps.

Hyperthyroidism Symptoms

  • Weight Loss: Sudden weight loss despite normal eating habits.
  • Rapid Heartbeat: A heart rate that feels unusually fast.
  • Heat Intolerance: Feeling hot even in cool surroundings.
  • Increased Appetite: Feeling hungry all the time.
  • Nervousness and Irritability: Feeling unusually anxious or irritable.
  • Tremors: Slight shaking of the hands or fingers.

Treating Thyroid in Pregnancy

Let’s finally get into the treatment part. 

So, the main treatment for hypothyroidism is a ‘synthetic thyroid hormone’ called levothyroxine. It helps hormone levels to get stable. However, it is essential for pregnant ladies to keep their thyroid levels in check. They have to stay in touch with doctors for future problems. 

On the other hand, treatment for hyperthyroidism is more complex. Minor cases usually do not need immediate treatment. For severe cases, anti-thyroid medications can be prescribed. 

Apart from that, a balanced diet can help during the thyroid in pregnancy. For hypothyroidism, foods rich in iodine are good. However, avoid excessive iodine intake, especially in hyperthyroidism. 

Lastly, regular exercise can help manage symptoms, but always consult your doctor before starting any new exercise.

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Final Words

Overall, thyroid in pregnancy can be challenging. After all, it doesn’t affect you but your unborn kid. That is why prior diagnosis becomes necessary. With the right treatment and approach, mothers can take care of themselves and their newborn babies. Hope the article helps.