THE THYROID, a butterfly-shaped gland in the neck, produces hormones essential for metabolism and brain activity.
Symptoms of a thyroid problem are often vague, but if you notice any of the following signs or have more than one, see your doctor for a simple blood test to gauge your hormone levels. The symptoms of an overactive thyroid and an underactive thyroid are both easily treated.
If you’ve always been a good sleeper but suddenly can’t snooze through the night, it could signal a thyroid problem. An overactive thyroid pumps out certain hormones (triiodothyronine, known as T3, and thyroxine, known as T4) in excess, which can overstimulate the central nervous system and lead to insomnia, says Dr Hossein Gharib, a Mayo Clinic endocrinologist. On the flip side, if you still feel tired after a full night’s sleep (or need to sleep more than usual), you might have an underactive thyroid, in which case your body doesn’t produce enough hormones.
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