The Benefits and Side Effects of Thyroid Medication
Thyroid medication is meant to bring the body back into balance by replenishing an insufficient hormone supply. As you can imagine, the process has both benefits and drawbacks. This article will look at both sides of that coin.
Form and Function: Restoring a Delicate Balance
Your thyroid hormone is meant to support cellular metabolic functions in the body. As such, when you do not have enough or when you have too much, it can effect everything from energy level to heart rate, and from weight gain to fertility.
The good news is that once your thyroid medication is in full effect, many of these symptoms self-correct. The symptoms that don’t can be minimized and managed with dietary and lifestyle changes. It will take about 6 months for the full benefit of the drug to be realized.
All of that probably sounds pretty promising after spending months dealing with a myriad of unexplained symptoms, but even with the problem successfully identified, there are things that patients need to know about the realities of thyroid medication.
The Realities of Thyroid Medication
Your drug therapy is adjustable. That statement may initially be met with an eye roll, but the adjustment extends far beyond a simple change in dosage.
Many patients find it beneficial to try several drug therapies before selecting the one that works best. While it can make the first 6 to 8 months of treatment difficult, it will start to balance out when patients discover the right match.
There are three main downsides with this medication:
1. Some patients have a religious objection to medications with animal by-product in them. This includes some thyroid drugs that are marketed as a natural solution.
2. Allergic reactions to medication are also possible.
3. Drug interaction – this is a big one. Patients need to always tell their medical provider about all the drug therapies they are taking so dangerous drug interactions can be avoided.
Other than that, work with a specialist who has an open approach to treating thyroid conditions.
Since the knowledge base for this is always changing, it’s a good idea to find a doctor who is on the cutting-edge of that knowledge, and brings to bear the latest treatments in a patient’s best interest.
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