MANAGING YOUR THYROID
Thyroid gland is one of the many glands that form our endocrine system. The hormones that are released from the thyroid gland have a very vital role to play in a body’s metabolism. The hormone that is secreted from the thyroid gland is called thyroxin. This hormone is stays in an inactive state till it reaches vital organs such as liver and kidneys. It is these organs that then activate and convert them triiodothyronine. This hormone plays a very important role in not only maintain the metabolism but also the function and development of vital organs such as the heart, brain, lungs etc.
Given the important role that the thyroid related hormone plays in the wellness of our body, it is imperative to ensure the well being of the thyroid gland and its related functions. This would require getting regular Thyroid tests. The Thyroid test is developed around the thyroid antibodies. It must be known to most people that the Immune System is responsible for fighting any foreign entities that enter into human body. As soon as the Immune System recognizes the presence of any foreign entity in one’s body, it triggers immune response to eliminate that entity. The immune response consists of releasing antibodies which target and eliminate the particular antibody. At times for unknown reasons the Immune system starts targeting the entities that are of the same body. If these entities that the immune system targets happens to be the thyroxin hormone, it would lead to many undesirable changes in the body. Since thyroxin is essential in ensuring proper metabolism of the body, any damage to this hormone will damage the metabolism as well. As far as the thyroid system is concerned, there are 3 kinds of antibodies that most frequently occur in a human body. These are anti-thyroid microsomal antibody, antithyroglobulin antibody and thyroid stimulating immunoglobulin.
The thyroid test aims at testing the level of these thyroid antibodies. If the levels of anti-thyroid microsomal antibody are present in high volumes in an individual then he is at risk of auto-immune thyroiditis. In this case the person may be at risk of his thyroid cells being destroyed by his own immune system. People with high levels of this antibody generally have or will have Hashimoto’s disease. This may result in decreased thyroid function over years. The next category of antibodies that is taken into consideration during thyroid testing is antihyroglobulin antibody. The level of adverse impact that their raised volume may lead to is not as high as the other two.
The last category of antibodies is thyroid stimulating immunoglobulin. These antibodies target thyroid stimulating hormone receptors present in the thyroid gland. This results in abnormal activation of these receptors which causes overproduction of thyroid hormones. This is known to cause the Graves’ disease.
Given the highly important role that thyroid hormones play in ensuring proper metabolic function of a body and the diseases that may be caused if the levels of these hormones are not proper, it is imperative for everyone to get a thyroid test. This is particularly important in case of people who are overweight or have had a family history of thyroid related problems.