May 18th, 2017 Written by a Staff Member of Hair Loss in Women
The thyroid is a butterfly shaped gland on your neck that is below the Adam’s apple, and along the front of the windpipe. It’s one of your largest endocrine glands. It’s job is to produce hormones that regulate the speed of your metabolism. Imbalances in the thyroid and hair loss may be related.
If your thyroid is out of balance, it can affect many systems in your body. In general, if your thyroid is out of balance, you will feel it. Thyroid issues are especially common in women.
And since your hair cells are some of the fastest growing in your body, when your thyroid is producing too little, or too much thyroid hormones, you will often see your hair breaking easily, dry hair, thinning hair, and even shedding.
If your body is under a lot of stress, it may stop producing hair to focus on another system in the body. So the health of your hair is one way to check your overall health.
Symptoms of Hyperthyroidism and Hypothyroidism
A underactive thyroid is called hypothyroidism (the most common thyroid imbalance), and an overactive thyroid is called hyperthyroidism (which is more common in women).
Both can affect your hair, and not just on your scalp. Both types of thyroid issues can cause hair to fall out. The good news is that usually your hair will grow back once your thyroid has been successfully treated.
Women suffering from hyperthyroidism may also have itchy and dry skin.
Changes in weight is one of the most common symptoms of thyroid issues. Hyperthyroidism will cause weight loss, and hypothyroidism will cause unexplained weight gain. So if you’ve been exercising and watching your diet and you’re STILL putting on weight, you may have a underactive thyroid.
A underactive thyroid will cause a lack of mental clarity, and often making people feel tired, having no energy, and sometimes depressed.
An overactive thyroid can cause your heart to beat faster (even causing heart palpitations), create a feeling of being amped up, and may include anxiety, sweating, and an aversion to heat. It may also cause problems sleeping, and irritability.
Another way to tell if you have a thyroid issue is to check for swelling in your neck below your Adam’s apple. If you’re not sure, try drinking water in front of a mirror. Tilt your head back and look for bumps or protrusions.
Thyroid issues can affect the menstrual cycle. Sometimes women think they’re going into menopause, when they’re actually dealing with a thyroid imbalance. It’s possible to be going into menopause and have thyroid issues.
Hyperthyroidism can also cause frequent bowel movements, whereas hypothyroidism can cause constipation.
A family history of thyroid issues increases your chances of having an imbalance. If you have some of the above symptoms (for either imbalance) please see a doctor. A doctor can give you simple blood test to see if you have thyroid issues.
Have you experienced an under or overactive thyroid and hair loss? Please leave us a comment below.